By the end of 2011 there are gonna be no flying cars, no plots gonna be built in mars and no other sci-fi predictions. But there will be some major advancement in terms of smarter Internet devices and great leaps forward in the area of emerging technologies. This year already gave some fruits like Motorola Xoom, Android Honey comb and some cool stuff. And there are lots to come like iPad2, Play station phone and so on.
So let’s talk about some of those new products which are going to hit the market and leading to revolution.
YEAR OF TABLETS:
The tablets which started addict tech lovers are continuing their legacy in 2011 also. They had a good break through by the release of Motorola Xoom and Blackberry playbook. They may be jus a preview of what tablets are capable of. And by the end of the year there will be few surprises from Apple iPad2, dell, Acer and by many others. Google’s next generation tablet OS, Android Honeycomb, is also one to watch out for. Microsoft might reveal touch optimized Windows OS for tablets by mid 2011, but the most anticipated will be the Palm OS on HP Palm Pads.
The tablet war will be fierce with these new tablets, which might bring steep price drops into the tablet PC segment. At the same time, there will be huge improvements in tablet screens; probably more OLED adoption. Intel might also launch its Oak Trail processor tailored for tablet PCs, and without doubt there will be improvements in processor speed, RAM, storage space and cameras.
Motorola xoom and blackberry playbook respectively
Broadband to speed up with 4G this year:
All of us want a faster connection and 2011 will bring more bandwidth to our mobile world with 4G. It is believed to be 10 times faster than current 3G networks and provides the speed equivalent (or more) than a standard landline wired connection. The launch of 4G around the world will vary greatly as telecoms seek to balance their 3G business with 4G, and as infrastructure is still being set up in many areas. Whether it’s 4G or not, mobile broadband will definitely speed up due to more manufacturers launching cheaper 3G devices and more people switching to 3G.
Motion control gaming:
65% of US households play video games and gaming will grow crazily in 2011, irrespective of the devices—smart phones, tablets, laptops, desktops and gaming consoles. More mobile devices will come equipped with gravity sensors and motion sensitive controls.
Nintendo’s Wii plus, Sony’s PlayStation Move and Microsoft’s Xbox 360 Kinect will become more widespread in 2011. In 2011 gaming consoles will start tracking your movements through cameras and follow voice commands through microphones (examples include the Xbox Controller and PlayStation Motion Controller).
Social gaming was on the rise in 2010 and it will soon get more popular on mobile phones and tablets. Smart phones and tablet PCs will primarily connect your social life in 2011, but with better graphics, more power, and more proficient augmented reality apps.
Google in the PC:
Google entered our lives in 1998 and might revisit the PC again with Google Chrome OS in 2011. Chrome OS is currently in its public beta testing phase on 12-inch Cr-48 notebooks, but might enter into commercial netbooks in mid 2011. Acer, Samsung and many big players are planning to launch netbooks powered by a lighter and faster Chrome OS. The much secured Chrome netbooks will run on 3G connectivity and could bring netbook prices down to USD 100 or lesser. Watch out Microsoft, Windows has a lot to fear from Chrome OS in 2011.
Near field communication:
Near Field Communication or NFC technology will turn your phone into a digital wallet. Although Google Nexus S became the first smart phone to embrace NFC in 2010, NFC won’t be main stream until later in 2011. Google, Apple, LG and loads of other manufacturers have lined up to get their gadgets packed with NFC, a high-frequency wireless communications technology that enables exchange of data between devices at a distance of 10cm or less. So you have to flash your NFC enabled smart phone at a retail outlet instead of your credit card.
Nokia has plans to bring NFC to all its smart phones. Google Android 2.3 already supports NFC and LG will roll out different NFC enabled gadgets this year as well. Apple is taking NFC seriously as well since 57% of iPhone users have shown interest in NFC; and the iPhone 5 is rumored to feature it.
Location based networking and Augmented Real
Twitter, Facebook, FourSquare, Gowalla, and Yelp, everyone wants to show your location and publish recommendation for friends, followers and even strangers. Nokia has inked a deal with China’ leading web portals Sina and Tencent to enable Chinese social users to tag locations in their updates. FourSquare currently has over 5 million users, 25000 new users daily and 2 million check-ins. Analysts expect that to quadruple in 2011. So it’s only going to get bigger.
Apple surprised everyone last year with the iPad. What will be making us go wow in 2011?! The Sony PlayStation phone tops my list, but there are other contenders like the BlackBerry Presenter phone for showing PowerPoint presentations on projectors and monitors using Bluetooth connectivity. The Sony Vaio 3D, which will have a button to switch to 3D mode to play 3D games and watch 3D movies with glasses gets another Sony product near the top of my must play with list. Then there’s the MintPass dual screen dual boot tablet with Windows and Android, iPhone 5, PalmPads and Verizon LTE phones. HTC is experimenting with E-Ink displays and so is Amazon; there might be radical e-readers in the pipeline for 2011. Voice control will improve and more gadgets, from gaming consoles to televisions, will start recognizing your voice. Better Internet connection and improved FaceTime and Skype apps will improve video calls in 2011.
The Shanzhai will continue to gain inspiration from all of these advancements, continuously striving to offer devices at unique local price points, often improving on brand names designs in the process. But what’s potentially very compelling is the possibility of more Shanzhai companies developing into brands themselves. Since the market for smartphones, tablets and other devices is continuously expanding, so too is demand and the room for new players to make an impact.
Let’s watch out the making of history and let’s be a part of it…
Courtesy: various websites and anonymous views
Gopi chand ( MGIT ECE 3rd year)