Seems the rise of the gadget that does everything is inexorable.
A press release from LG Electronics in Korea (sorry, no URL available) says that according to its survey of telecommunications experts gathered at Busan ITU Telecom Asia 2004, 95% said that it was either very likely or somewhat likely (73% and 22% ) that consumers will eventually choose a single converged 3G device (combining phone, camera, video camera, MP3 and others) over multiple devices. Three quarters of these folk expect this to happen within two years.
Apart from the obvious features, what else might these converged devices contain? More than half of the experts said they wanted “digital keys” to open their car, home or office, a quarter wanted a personal security device such as a panic alarm or electric shock function. These features were selected from a list of possible new functions which included image scanning and a calorie calculator.
For what it’s worth (and it’s clearly not worth very much), to me, a phone is a phone is a phone. We had another bomb in our town last week, exploding outside an embassy and killing about 10 people. It’s then that you realise what your phone is primarily there for: To keep you in touch with loved ones, the office, sources, etc, and your brain quickly downsizes and needs simplicity. Who could dial 911 in an emergency on a super smart phone with lots of features, or could sit around while the software reboots, or could scroll patiently through lots of submenus if they hit the wrong keys?
Yeah, I know, this doesn’t happen very often, but it’s one reason why I’ve kept my cellphone real simple.