This Palgrave Pivot explores how communication technology such as the Internet has changed the nature of trade, focusing especially on economy-wide reductions in company size (granularity) and the role of retailers (disintermediation). By increasing access to comparative data, influencing conceptions of time, and reducing the number of intermediaries between creator and consumer, technological connectivity is changing the very definition of competition. In the new network economy, disintermediation and granularity are turning cooperative information gathering and sharing into a vital market institution.
To exemplify the effects of communication technology, Bhatt focuses on two markets with particularly powerful effects on the economy: labor and education, and CIME (communication, information services, media, and entertainment). Mobile connectivity is radically changing the extent, capabilities, and operations of these markets, both in terms of the services they provide and how they interact with consumers. Bhatt also explores how these benefits intersect with new concerns about privacy and security when the line between public and private information is becoming ever more fluid.