I read just a moment ago an interesting analysis what to expect in the near future on computer and mobile devices fields. What does mobile scale mean? tells that some time in the next six months, the number of smartphones on earth will pass the number of PCs.
This shouldn’t really surprise anyone: the mobile business is much bigger than the computer industry, and there have been more mobile phones than PCs since at least the late 1990s. There are now perhaps 3.5bn to 4bn* mobile phones, replaced every two years, versus 1.7-1.8bn PCs replaced every 5 years.
Mobile phones (on average) are replaced every two years, which means you can sell more phones in a quarter than the PC industry sells in a year. The great majority of mobile users are converting to smartphones running some variation Unix (Android=Linux).
So we will end up with somewhere over 3bn smartphones in use on earth, almost double the number of PCs. There are perhaps 900m consumer PCs on earth (mostly shared), and maybe 800m corporate PCs (locked down).
The entire internet is being changed fundamentally. On the desktop, ‘internet’ has really meant ‘web’, with a few exceptions (such as Spotify or Skype). On mobile web is no longer the only option, very often interaction is done with apps.