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A Vision of our Digital Future

Today’s world foretold…

A revolution in interaction

In 1997, McKinsey Quarterly published a piece titled simply “A revolution in interaction.” Examining how people and companies work together, it predicted a two- to fivefold increase in our capacity to interact—an increase driven by the expansion and falling cost of computing power and telecom networks.

The article envisioned the world we live in today. As it foresaw, businesses “benefit from the superior economics of specialized suppliers.” Customers “search exhaustively” for “the exact product of their choice at the lowest price”—which might come “from nearly anywhere in the world.” Intermediaries such as travel agents have foundered as providers go “directly to consumers via telephones and the Internet.” Web browsers “capture information about the interactions” with customers. And new techniques make it possible to transmit “music, photographs, and video in standard formats over a single electronic channel.”

Read this classic Quarterly article to learn more about today’s world—foretold nearly two decades ago.

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