Gaming and the Impact on Customer Care

I’m becoming more and more convinced that over the next several years we will see shifts, albeit small at first, towards providing customer care in channels where we previously did not have a presence.

First, there has been a consistent and significant pattern of growth in a number of gaming user demographics. Some key points:

72% of American Households play computer or video games

37 years-The average game player age

29% of gamers were over the age of 50

These figures look a lot like your workforce, don’t they?

When you couple these factors with training program evolution to include virtual/augmented reality and scenario-driven training it says a lot about the current and future workforce.   I see our current and future workforce, and that of our customers, ready to conduct business in a more virtual setting.  This will likely include tutorials and training via environments like SecondLife and Teleplace. Teleplace, in particular, is ready for the “enterprise prime time” in that it has been made to look and feel fairly “corporate”.

AT&T Labs, our research arm, has been using SecondLife for data visualization, and conducts many of their meetings in-world as it allows for a completely different thought model than you would find in a traditional teleconference.

Culturally, I don’t know we are there yet, but I expect in the near term (3-5 years), we will be.

I’d love to hear your thoughts. I know there are going to be some strong feelings on either side of this one. Leave a comment and add to the discussion!

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