What's Ho-Hum On E-Commerce Can Be Cutting Edge On M-Commerce

When Pizza Hut last week rolled out new versions of its mobile app for Android and iPad, the latest features included the ability to order without an account and to enter payment-card data right on the phone. Such capabilities have been commonplace on E-Commerce sites for years. But what's old hat on E-Commerce is often cutting edge on mobile. Although such functions are important on desktops, the very nature of mobile devices makes them essential. So why didn't Pizza Hut include these capabilities in its initial rollout last January? "We had to get the app out early based on consumer demand," said Pizza Hut CIO Baron Concors. "You balance functionality versus speed-to-market."

Concors also confirmed what more retailers are concluding, that the BlackBerry's viability as an M-Commerce platform is rapidly dwindling. Saying that his team was focused on platforms from the "top-tier players," he added, "We don't see BlackBerry as one of the options. It was discussed early on [in staff meetings], and it was quickly eliminated. They haven't strategically put themselves in a position to compete." (Ouch! Talk about your RIMshots.)