This book provides a good mix of enthusiasm tempered with realism about what mobile commerce will mean for all types of business. After outlining the rise of mobile phones across the world, the author delves into what types of m-commerce applications will potentially thrive. From travel and electronic ticketing to gambling and games, the author outlines a promising vision for the future, illustrated with current online ventures (often from Europe and the U.K.). As this book went to press last year, there are a few anachronisms after the dot-com fallout. (While Webvan, for example, is no longer an example of successful e-commerce, the force of the argument here for m-commerce is still quite convincing.)
Later on, the author discusses the infrastructure of mobile commerce, including the differences between traditional and mobile networks. Next comes a full tour of today's mobile devices, from phones and PDAs to smart cards and even wireless devices for cars (which are a prime market for new m-commerce applications). There's also a quick tour of WAP and WML for creating wireless user interfaces. This technical material is suitable for IT managers and even developers new to the world of wireless. The book concludes with some predictions about how the move to wireless will impact society, along with some issues that may help or hinder its adoption.
All in all, this title provides a good introduction to the new possibilities of wireless, one with a nicely worldwide perspective. As North American companies get onboard with mobile commerce, this guide to how m-commerce has been implemented in Europe and Asia can benefit any decision maker or planner with some good ideas, along with providing some intelligent predictions about how m-commerce might change the ways companies do business in the very near future. --Richard Dragan
Topics covered: The emerging mobile device market (trends and predictions, market drivers); business opportunities for mobile commerce (m-commerce); moving beyond e-commerce into m-commerce; customer relationships; mobile services described (including e-mail and messaging, location finding, and digital content products); consumer m-commerce (travel, ticketing, banking, stocks, gambling, games, and shopping); business m-commerce (mobile markets, collaboration and better management through m-commerce); m-commerce network technologies; global, local, and personal networks; cellular networks and standards described; third-generation (3G) networks; types of mobile devices (including phones, pagers, PDAs, smart cards, and cards); overview of WAP and WML; XML and mobile content; payment systems and security issues; societal issues surrounding m-commerce (including privacy, health, access, geography, obsolescence, and cost per customer); and reference to m-commerce resources.