Corporate innovation teams may have access to a wealth of resources, but just like scrappy startups they're navigating uncertainty in a rapidly changing environment. To keep up with the latest technological developments that may affect their lines of business, enterprise companies will want to pay attention to the Internet Trends 2016 - Code Conference report from Kleiner Perkins Caufield Byers by renowned venture capitalist and former Wall Street securities analyst Mary Meeker.
Since the report is more than 200 pages long, we thought it would be helpful to share a high-level summary of the trends that are most relevant to corporations:
(1) "In the face of a slowing global economy, key macro growth drivers from the past two decades are less certain."
Takeaway for corporate innovators: With the slowing of the global economy, future markets are unpredictable. Corporations need to be prepared to take calculated risks to outpace competition in the market. That's why corporate innovation teams need structure, diligence, and a long-term mindset.
(2) "Transportation is being re-imagined, as the rise of car computerization, autonomous driving, and sharing transform our understanding of mobility."
Takeaway for corporate innovators: Think of what's happening right now in the global economy as another industrial revolution. With the emergence of self-driving technology, the car that we know and love is about to become a horse and buggy.
(3) "Looking to China, Internet leadership continues, as the country boasts global innovation powerhouses in e-commerce, messaging, travel, financial services, and on-demand transportation."
Takeaway for corporate innovators: Innovation is a global opportunity. Companies from overseas are not just setting up accelerators in Silicon Valley, but around the world. Same goes for participants; Startup are coming from around the world.
(4) "More efficient and often more convenient than typing, voice-based interfaces are ramping quickly and creating a new paradigm for human-computer interaction."
Takeaway for corporate innovators: Artificial intelligence (AI) technology is finally getting the infrastructure it needs to turn dreams into a reality. In a few short years, AI tech will power the wearables and other multitude of devices that are entering the market today. Corporate innovation teams need to prepare themselves for the coming AI landscape.
(5) "Internet user growth remains consistent (led by acceleration in India), while smartphone user and shipment growth have slowed."
Takeaway for corporate innovators: Even the Internet is still in its infancy, with massive opportunity for growth. New consumer markets are emerging around the world. Enterprise R&D teams and corporate innovation programs need to focus on markets that they may not have yet considered.
(6) "The proliferation of data generated by a multitude of devices has fostered tremendous business opportunity, but privacy concerns abound."
Takeaway for corporate innovators: As almost every enterprise leader knows, the Internet of Things (IoT) is one of the biggest yet-to-be-fully-realized opportunities. Even though the market may seem mature now, the speed of innovation is about to begin accelerating.
(7) "New online-first brands have rapidly grown in popularity for the millennial generation with their focus on omni-channel and personalized distribution strategies."
Takeaways for corporate innovators: Imagine how the world of devices has evolved in a few short years. Corporate innovation strategies need to account for a technology landscape that is dramatically different than what exists in key markets today. Corporate innovation must factor in the growing demand for personalization.
The biggest takeaway from Mary Meeker's report? It isn't just corporate innovation teams facing these challenges, startups are also facing similar challenges. Corporate organizations need structured programs to meet their goals—to create stability when facing uncertainty.
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