Mobile commerce is going to be as big as the Internet, according to the latest Computer Weekly/Harvey Nash poll.
Sixty-seven per cent of respondents believe that mobile commerce will have as much impact on business-to-business trade over the next five years as the Internet had over the previous five. Only 20% said it would not while 13% did not know.
With suppliers such as Nokia, IBM, and Compaq fiercely promoting the benefits of pervasive computing, users will have to decide what benefits it could give their business.
Among the most enthusiastic was one respondent who said, "It will be like the change from clocks to watches."
But there was a common view that technological advances were needed if mobile commerce was to be a hit.
One respondent said mobile commerce would take off "only if a mobile mechanism with greater reliability and bandwidth than the current 9600 GSM standard becomes mainstream technology".
Another said it would not take off "unless there is a substantial shift in the performance and reliability of mobile communications".
Among those who saw m-commerce as a less dramatic change than the Internet, one said, "Mobile commerce and its technology are still in the gimmick phase and very expensive, although clearly it will gain momentum in the next five years."