Real Books Have a Real Future. Deloitte

Deloitte has today shared its latest Technology, Media and Telecommunications Predictions at a briefing in Jo’burg.

Perhaps the most startling prediction for me was the suggestion that the printed book still has a robust future.

Just one book in five these days is sold as an e-book. And while there has been a decline in the number of bookshops thanks to the Kindle and other e-readers, niche bookshops are on the rise again. People seem to like the look and feel, the touch and smell, of a real book.

Newspapers and magazines do not seem to have such a rosy future in their printed form, but when we arrived for the presentation, we were handed a printed guide to the predictions – on real paper.

The Deloitte presentation looked at the big trends, using rather too much geek-speak and jargon, some of which went way above my head. A few other highlights, from what I could grasp…..

• They are expecting 1 million drones in non-military use by the end of the year.
• A drone is being launched to use pepper spray for crowd control.
• 3D printing is mainly used in businesses, but it hasn’t worked in the consumer mass-market. 90 percent of enterprise use is about prototype development, with less than 10% for the final product.
• People who order online and then collect their purchase – the click and collect trend – is booming in Europe. Makro is planning this in ZA.
• Smartphone batteries will get better, but with no big breakthrough. A 5% to 15% improvement in battery life is expected. Battery age often triggers upgrades – good for the industry.
• There will be a big increase in small satellites – Nanosats.
• Enterprises are again driving IT development, after a decade if this being driven by the consumer.
• More innovation in industry for using wearable devices than among the consumer.
• Short videos (under 20 minutes) will grow but never dominate media consumption around the world.
• More people watch TV drama online than music videos.
• The millennia generation is spending a lot of money – 62bn US dollars a year in the US. More on Pay TV than in music. However, they do three things at the same time while watching TV – a multitasking challenge for the advertisers.
• Print is still alive and well, as I noted earlier. The future is “exclusively” in books. 80% of books worldwide are still print rather than digital. Still a very important part of our world. The passion of millennials is still about books.
• In the US, independent book stores have picked up.
• Smartphone upgrades will amount to 1bn during the course of 2015. Tapering off had been predicted. Most are people upgrading from one version of a smartphone to the next one.
• The growing gap in broadband speeds is growing. Those with access to the top range have far faster access than the others.
• The use of contactless mobile payments is gaining momentum. At least 30m people using phones for payment this year.


I am a great purchaser of e-books, but still prefer the printed version. This is especially so for cookbooks and cartoon collections. Long may they continue to be printed.

Tweet of the Day: (@famousquotenet): Redistribution has the same relationship to market economics as rape has to consensual sex. – Will Spencer

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