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Handbook of Research in Mobile Business: Technical, Methodological, and Social Perspectives

Handbook of Research in Mobile Business: Technical, Methodological, and Social Perspectives
Author(s)/Editor(s): Bhuvan Unhelkar (University of Western Sydney, Australia)
Copyright: ©2006
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59140-817-8
ISBN13: 9781591408178
ISBN10: 1591408172
EISBN13: 9781591408185


View Handbook of Research in Mobile Business: Technical, Methodological, and Social Perspectives on the publisher's website for pricing and purchasing information.


The Handbook of Research in Mobile Business: Technical, Methodological, and Social Perspectives is the premier reference source for the latest research and scientific findings in the constantly expanding field of mobile business. This two-volume collection of 63 comprehensive chapters brings together the practical experiences and knowledge of researchers and academics, making it the single most significant contribution on understanding the usage and application of mobile technologies and networks in global business.

The Handbook of Research in Mobile Business: Technical, Methodological, and Social Perspectives provides ground-breaking strategic input into the future of mobile technologies, bringing together the best in thoughts and practices of this fascinating, global technology.

Table of Contents



Communication is the key!!


The search for extraterrestrial life is becoming more urgent—lest we humans end up with claustrophobia! Jet travel could not have shrunk physical distance at the speed with which the Internet has meshed the world of words, sounds, and pictures. Businesses of all types and sizes find a level playing field in the cyberspace and, barring a few troglodytes of no particular age group, the world is connected. Alvin Toffler was right when he asserted in his popular book, Third Wave1, that not only are we all affected by change, but even the rate of change is accelerating. A quick look around you as you read chapters from this book—sitting, traveling, working, or sleeping—ratify Toffler’s thoughts. And if, indeed, the rate of change is increasing, we are already beyond the third wave of information. This Fourth Wave, which is right upon us, is the wave of communication! Everyone is connected to everyone else independent of time and location. And mobile technologies provide the underlying basis for this age of communication, ensuring that businesses and people are connected directly and personally irrespective of where they are and what time of day or night it is. Riding on the back of the traditional Internet, mobile networks ensure that information that was available through a physical computing gadget at a fixed location is now available anytime and anywhere. This has obviously resulted in the tremendous popularity of mobile applications in the business domain. Furthermore, the infrastructure related to mobile technologies is also unique and, in some sense, distinctly different from the physical Internet. In simple business terms, setting of a transmission tower for mobile communications is relatively easier than installing physical lines to provide connectivity. Even the use of a satellite for communication purposes is becoming easier and cheaper for large organizations and governments than setting up of the costly fiber optics or similar physical wires and networks. Thus, because of their ease of usage from an end user’s viewpoint, ease of setting up and usage of infrastructure, and rapidly dropping costs, mobile technologies are influencing global business like never before. Based on this phenomenal importance of mobile technologies, especially to mobile business, this book compiles contributions from a wide range of researchers and practitioners in their investigations and usage of mobile technologies in business.


Advances in mobile technology are reshaping the relationship between business and technology. There is a “paradigm shift”—it is now no longer just a matter of providing technological solutions for business problems. This is so because mobile technology is now becoming a creative cause for hitherto unknown new business models and business processes. This leads to complexities in adopting mobility in business, as both technology and business forces need to be balanced against each other. A similar balance is also aimed in the compilation of chapters in this book that bring together the technical, methodological, and social dimensions of mobile business to the fore. For example, while some chapters discuss the strategic needs of a business as a reason to use mobile technologies, other chapters demonstrate how mobile technology itself is considered as a driver for new business challenges as well as solutions.

The paradigm shift in terms of mobile technology adoption has occurred because, in practical terms, mobile technologies, including mobile applications, gadgets, networks, and content management systems, together work as a catalyst for deep structural change in how organizations accomplish goals. Although such a change requires significant effort in terms of BPM (Business Process Modeling), still the effort in applying mobile technologies to business processes and organizational structures is worthwhile as it allows organizations to gain greater reach and leverage new kinds of service delivery and interaction, culminating in significant productivity gains. In fact, it is not just organizations that stand to benefit with the advances in mobile technologies; the potential ease with which individuals can interact with organizations globally through mobile technologies also creates tremendous opportunities for easing the quality of life of people and society. Thus mobile technologies are becoming a creative cause for a paradigm shift in the business world that requires thinking, understanding, and case study experiences, as have been gelled together in this treatise.


The aforementioned discussion highlights the crucial need to bring together the thinking and practical experiences of practitioners and consultants together with researchers and academics. This crucial need has been satisfied in this book, making it a significant contribution to the literature on usage and application of mobile technologies and networks in global business. This book provides significant strategic input into ‘mobility’, aiming to bring together thoughts and practices in technical, methodological, and social dimensions of this fascinating technology. Stated more succinctly, the mission of this book is:

To make a substantial contribution to the literature on ‘mobility’ encompassing excellence in research and innovation as well as demonstrated application of mobile technologies to mobile business.


For the sake of comprehensibility as well as enabling readers to focus on their area of interest, this book is divided into sections as follows:

  • Location: Deals with location-based services that form the crux of the mobile revolution as applied to businesses.
  • Health: Focuses on the phenomenal potential for application of mobility in the health sector.
  • Technical: Focuses on the core mobile technologies.
  • Network: Discusses the research and application of wireless and mobile networks.
  • Security: Deals with the security aspect of mobile technologies.
  • Strategic: Focuses on the strategic planning and management aspect of mobile technologies in business.
  • Application: Discusses the incorporation of mobility in software applications.
  • Method: Revolves around methodologies and processes related to mobile technologies including discussions on mobile transition processes.
  • Customer: Focuses on the end user/customer aspects of mobility in business.
  • Social: Handles the research as well as thoughts dealing the socio-cultural aspects of the influence of mobile technologies in society.
  • Case Study: Discusses the practical application of mobility in practical business scenarios.


The following are the major categories of readers for this book:

  • Programmers and architects of mobile-enabled software systems will find the discussions on technologies, networks, and security directly applicable to their work.
  • Business process modelers and information architects will find the chapters dealing with incorporation of mobile technologies in business processes quite relevant.
  • Methodologists and change managers will be interested in the chapters that describe the transition processes from existing to mobile businesses.
  • Sociologists and legal experts will find the discussions on cross-border socio-cultural issues in applications of mobile technologies and the resultant globalization of businesses a fascinating read.
  • Strategic management may find some of the earlier strategic discussions in this book quite relevant in setting the strategic directions of their organizations—especially because these chapters have been contributed by practicing senior managers.
  • Researchers and academics will find numerous hooks in the research-based chapters of this book in terms of identifying areas of research, as well as following research methods when dealing with “mobility.” Thus, the strong research focus of this book—especially the detailed and relevant references at the end of each contributed chapter, the research methodologies followed, and the discussions on research results (especially some excellent “action research”-based case studies)—make this book an ideal reference point for active researchers in this area.


1 Agricultural (first), Industrial (second), and Information (third) wave

Bhuvan Unhelkar

Reviews and Testimonials

"An in-depth tool to support mobile business research."

– ALA/RUSA Business Reference And Service Section (BRASS)

I highly recommend this book to both researchers and practitioners in the industry as an invaluable desktop reference. This book will not only aid practitioners in what they are currently doing with mobile business, but will also open up numerous directions for further investigative research work.

– Dr. Elaine Lawrence, University of Technology, Sydney, Australia

Unhelkar's volumes are research intensive demonstrating how the business and technology sectors are supporting each other to make mobile business more secure, ubiquitous, and successful.

– Julia Gelfand, University of California, USA

Author's/Editor's Biography

Bhuvan Unhelkar (Ed.)
Dr. Bhuvan Unhelkar has 23 years of strategic and hands-on professional experience in the field of Information and Communication Technologies. He is also an internationally known expert in the field of software modeling and processes with four books and numerous papers to his credit. He brings a unique blend of industrial consulting and robust research together. Prof. Unhelkar is a senior academic at the University of Western Sydney. His interests are mobile technologies, web services and socio-cultural perspectives in ICT.


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