20 Mobile Trends and Future Technologies

Spokespeople from Info-Tech Research Group Ltd., Advanced Micro Devices Inc., Sony Corp. and Research in Motion Ltd. provided food for thought on upcoming uses for mobile devices at a Technology Town Hall meeting in Toronto Tuesday.

By Jennifer Kavur
Fri, December 04, 2009

Spokespeople from Info-Tech Research Group Ltd., Advanced Micro Devices Inc., Sony Corp. and Research in Motion Ltd. provided food for thought on upcoming uses for mobile devices at a Technology Town Hall meeting in Toronto Tuesday.

Slideshow: 2009's Top 10 Emerging Enterprise Technologies

Hosted by Ron Huxter, CCTO for Ontario Public Service, the Office of the Corporate Chief Technology Officer (OCCTO) event takes place every year to spark conversation between the public and private sectors on IT trends and upcoming technologies.

The presentations focused on emerging trends and future applications for mobile technology. Here are 20 highlights.

From the RAZR to the 3GS

Five years ago, the must-have mobile device was the Motorola RAZR. Today, it's the iPhone 3GS, said Info-Tech's lead research analyst Mark Tauschek. Speculating on what's to come five years from now and highlighting how much the technology has already changed, Tauschek pointed out that smart phones are as much about the OS as they are about the hardware. He pointed to Motorola's DROID powered by Android 2.0 and the Palm Pre's WebOS.

Smartphones versus MIDs ... and eBook readers

Tauschek anticipates a future convergence between smart phones and Mobile Internet Devices (MIDs) like the new Nokia N900. It's already difficult to tell the difference between the two types of devices, he said. eBook readers like the Amazon Kindle are also turning into multi-function devices with the ability to connect to 3G networks, noted Tauschek, and starting to get picked up in the enterprise space.

Netbooks, convertible tablets and mini notebooks

In his lecture on the "mobile revolution," Tauschek highlighted devices like the Asus Eee T91 netbook and mini notebooks like Sony's Vaio P.

Keyboards and screens become user-friendly with peripherals

Tiny keyboards and small screens are holding back today's mobile devices, according to Tauschek, who anticipates a future focus on peripherals. He pointed to laser-generated keyboards, which produce a full-sized keyboard on any flat surface, smartphones with built-in projectors like the recently-announced LG eXpo from LG and AT&T, and the Blackberry inPulse smartwatch as examples of how to enhance the use of mobile devices.

Wireless carrier networks: faster, more reliable, ubiquitous

Wireless networks have evolved significantly over the last 10 years, Tauschek pointed out, with 2G providing up to 236.8 Kbps in the late 90's to 3G offering up to 56 Mbps in 2005 to 4G expected to bring over 100 Mbps in 2010. In five years, speeds of 50 Mbps or greater will be commonplace and 100 Mbps will not be unusual, he said. Tauschek also suggested increases in reliability and seamless roaming between public and private networks are on the way.

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