Normally, each year in the dead of winter, I publish a predictions article about the coming year. Earlier this year, we published my 12th consecutive predictions for the mobile industry. However, today, I would like to dust off the crystal ball and push it a little bit further into the future to look at how the messaging industry might evolve over the coming five to 10 years.

April 24th, 2015 ushers in a new era of the Apple Watch. As many others did, I watched with anticipation, the March 9th Spring-forward Apple announcement that included information about the Apple Watch. Apart from the availability and pricing, little new information was provided that we really didn’t already know. As I review a large number of tweets, opinions, and articles, the first results indicate a very mixed set of views (from extremely positive to extremely negative [“the iFlop”]).

Here we go once again: another 2015 prediction article.  This is my 8th annual predictions blog posting and I can say it never has been more difficult to prognosticate on where this industry is headed.  Mobile in the context of an operating environment has never been more important to consumers and businesses, worldwide. Today, if a business or enterprise does not include mobile engagement as a priority, then I believe they are behind before they even begin.

In the late afternoon on Wednesday, February 19th (Eastern Time, USA), Facebook announced that it was acquiring WhatsApp for $19 billion in cash, stock, and restricted stock.   While I’m not a financier, I think $19 billion was a bit much as I’ve read that it roughly translates to $42 or so per WhatsApp subscriber.  I think it was a good move, nonetheless.

Welcome to 2014!  Before I embark on my 7th consecutive year of mobile industry predictions, let’s wrap up 2013 with a review of last year’s predictions.  Overall, it has been another exciting, challenging, but overall profitable year for the mobile industry.  We saw some rises and falls, new iPads, a new iPhone, new Samsung devices, new mobile OS’s, consolidations, acquisitions, as well as a myriad of new products and innovations.