mobile & desktop website development
Since developing our first mobile website in 2001 on a 2.5G network, we have always firmly believed that mobile devices would be the primary device for content consumption and e-commerce.
We have evolved with the technology from WAP to HTML and then to HTML5 in 2005, before the iPhone revolutionised mobile technology and consumption in 2007.
It is now 13 nears on from the iPhone and nearly 17 years on from the launch of 3G.
Nearly all of today's technologies like text and MMS chat, social media, video downloads, e-ticketing, mobile TV, video calling, GPS & location based services were all available in market in 2003.
The problem was the lack of bandwidth and data allocation by the telco's (nervy about network capacity after billions in investment and not sure how to price the data at the outset and educate consumers on what data actually was then) with download speeds of just 384 kilobits per second.
It wasn't just the lack of bandwidth that stopped all these features we find essential today in the COVID-19 era being adopted, people's behaviour needed time to adapt to the technology as an explosion of supply-side innovations hit the market quicker than people knew they needed them.
Today's Australian, mainstream 4G+ networks are delivering download speeds of around 10 Megabits per second, with 5G rolling out promising download speeds of Gigabits per second to accommodate smart cities, homes, autonomous, vehicles and literally billions of new devices coming online in the next 5 years in the iOT or internet of things.
Today's abundance of mobile bandwidth is complemented by the NBN which has replaced the decades old ADSL technology, and runs on a fibre backbone nationally. it's fatal flaw (apart from being over budget and almost obsolete as 5G / wifi hybrid hubs will come online within the next few years as they have done in Europe for almost a decade on 4G.) is the 100+ year old copper network that became the 'last mile' solution costing 11.1 Billion dollars from Telstra back in 2015.
You may have noticed your internet slowing down at times during lockdown especially in peak usage times with millions working and studying from home in a matter of weeks since early March.
It's the copper last mile that is the bottleneck and the exchanges that receive the data at optimum speed until routing to your home through the antiquated copper lines that are the source of the latency.
With worldwide adoption of 5G technology being accelerated as a result of the Coronavirus Pandemic, we will have 1000x increases in speed compared to 4G with advances mobile radio wave encoding and compression, coupled with mobile chipsets that double in speed and memory every 18 months as per 'Moore's Law (Gordon Moore was a co-founder of Intel).
None of this would be possible without the innovator who would be known as the father of information theory. "the signal in the noise" as Bell Labs pioneer quantum physicist, Claude Shannon theorised in the 1950's, which became a reality half a century later through a small US start-up called Qualcomm, who had devised a new digital communications technology called CDMA, or code division multiple access otherwise known as multiplexing.
In a layman's analogy it means that if you and a friend are in a noisy room you can still hear each other with CDMA because everyone else is speaking a different language which you aren't focusing on.
All communications between you both are encoded and only the two of you can decode and receive each other's voice, photo's, video or data for the duration of your call without ruining any of the other guests' conversations,
Before, Qualcomm's CDMA breakthrough, TDMA was the global telecommunications standard (time division multiplexing) and in the same analogy if you and your friend wanted to talk to each other using this technology in the same noisy room full of people, you would only hear parts of the conversation when the noise of the room was low enough for you to hear it.
That's why Analogue technology, (which relied on a constant feedback loop and the signal to noise ratio's would spike and dip erratically depending on the environment and traffic) and 2G GPRS (general packet radio switching) mobile devices would drop out frequently.
Before CDMA the main global standard of TDMA meant that once you used up the concurrent capacity in the nearest cell tower, it would try and re-route the packets to a nearby cell tower with more capacity, revert to half the bit rate or simply drop out altogether.
CDMA was a controversial technology, going against the GSMA's (Global System for Mobile Association) widely adopted TDMA standard, known as UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunications Standard.) Up until 3G there were two main communication standards for sanding data over radio networks:
- circuit switching: this standard relied on creating a dedicated 'circuit' on the home carrier or cross-network which is fundamentally dependant on the capacity and handover capability of reachable cell towers.
- packet switching (GPRS /General Packet Radio Switching) this was a revolutionary technology in itself because for the first time it allowed users to send packets of data from voice / music / video / SMS / MMS / Machine to Machine on one data call which instead of requiring a dedicated circuit, would concatenate the rich media files into tiny packets routed simultaneously from router to router across the internet and are then decoded and reassembled into the original file that was sent.
The network you send files over uses fixed-length packets of 1,024 bits (1 kilobit). The header of each packet is 96 bits long (this is essential to the successful delivery as every packet has the same destination IP address) and the trailer is 32 bits long (the information on the assembly order of the packet), leaving 896 bits for the payload (the file or message itself).
Both standards operated on the decades the TCP / IP protocol, (Transmission Control Protocol / Internet Protocol) invented in the 1974, coinciding with Bob Metcalfe's invention of ethernet, was an extremely reliable way communicating across the low bandwidth analogue radio networks of the time whether through fixed networks or analogue radio waves.
It worked by sending data such as email in evenly spaced packets divided into octets and scattered across the network with 'best to host' connectivity and error checking to ensure all packets arrived and were correctly re-assembled.
It was an elegantly simple but robust solution for sending data of any type across networks and became adopted as part of the protocol stack we use on mobile and fixed networks today.
Many of the principles that enabled mobile technology have been applied to digital marketing and branding through the use of algorithms, tracking and analytics, designed to find your customer in the right place at the right time wherever they are online.
You start by serving your target audience an algorithmically designed ad at the right time and in context by programmatically buying impressions or viewable minutes or video at the optimum CPM (cost per thousand or 'cost per mille') creating a real time feedback loop to gain learnings, optimise and scale on the fly.
Ironically the foundation principles of Analogue technology mirror that of digital marketing processes, with it's 'signal to noise' servo mechanism ensuring the message is heard, capturing feedback in the form of impressions, clicks, sign-ups and purchases.
Many of the world's best marketers and entrepreneurs share the same motto: "Fail fast, learn often."
This means to get to where your brand or company needs to be you need to continually refine the UI and UX continually to ensure potential leads are 'experiencing' your brand, and subscribing as a warm lead through our performance driven design, that is centred around your target demographic and geographic area.
A website is not a static thing with a blog attached. it's an intimate customer experience created through learning about your audience with 3rd party data points.
Once built you can use Google Analytics and a favourite analytics program that anyone in a boardroom can understand called Crazy Egg. this application requires 5 lines of code in the header metadata and like the famous Arnie movie Predator, shows an 'infrared' heat map which goes from deep blue for minimal engagement on a single website element, (like a CTA button) to a hot glowing red for the highest point of engagement,
Google Analytics is basically an Analogue of Crazy Egg, so whether you're a number cruncher or more visual a combination of both tracking applications is recommended due to it's ability to speak to non-technical executives and board members for an agile marketing approach and optimisation along each stage of your digital sales funnel.