Smartwatches, interactive glasses, rounded screens, foldable smartphones – from a big cloud a little rain?
Smartwatches, interactive glasses, rounded screens – whether you're into it or not, you must have heard of them. Even my 80-year-old grandfather, who does not have a computer, has heard of them. Do you think they will be a revolution – the next big thing – as the manufacturers would like?
In fact, most of these devices have been with us for years. We could not use them, but they were with us, present in pop culture – books, comics and sci-fi movies. If you've watched „Minority Report” then I'm sure you all associate them.
Currently on the market we already have a few, if not more than a dozen devices that we can put on the wrist and try to expand with them the range of possibilities of our smartphones. Smartwatches, however, will not be a revolution as smartphones. In their current form, they are only a controller for the devices we connect them to. In addition, they have a very limited battery life, which makes them useful in situations such as driving in the car, when the phone is in our pocket. Besides, who would like to shorten the working time of their smartphone by charging it with a constant connection to the network?? Besides, let's consider whether watches were accidentally one of the items that were replaced by cell phones? It used to be that children were given watches on the occasion of the first communion, now it is rather my first cell phone.
Not that I negate the idea of a smartwatch, on the contrary, it is very cool. I think that in addition to controlling music playback, reading emails, text messages, notifications, weather, navigation and answering calls, it can be quite a nice gadget for the eye. I'm even willing to bet good whiskey that one of the more popular apps would be one that offers to buy skins from watch manufacturers. Imagine this – on Tuesday Rolex, on Wednesday IWC, and on Friday Patek. How cool is that?
For several months we can follow and get excited about more reports about GoogleGlass. A device that many believe will be an incredible breakthrough. Yes, it has a chance. I had the opportunity not only to use Glass for a while, but also to prepare an application for this hardware. In my opinion, in the first place it will benefit people who want to increase their productiveness, improve their multitasking, and only in the second place (and after another discount) can become a device for a more mass user, pursuing lifestyle needs –taking pictures, capturing views and memories – as it is presented in the spots from Google. For now, the barrier to the massification of this equipment (besides the obvious fact that it is not yet commercially available) is, in my opinion, the same as for smartwatches’s – battery and the fact that neither Google Glass nor smartwatches in their current form are fully independent devices – to use their full potential they need to be connected to a phone. If only the Google glasses could last a whole day (let it be 20h) without charging, could make calls, connect to the network, recognize more languages and maybe even display the keyboard on the desk – I would gladly get rid of my smartphone and tablet. And I bet you another bottle of whiskey that such self-propelled glasses will be the next big thing.
Curved and flexible screens
In October, the Samsung Galaxy Round hit the Korean market, followed moments later by the LG G Flex. Both have curved screens. Each in a different direction. The first, held in a pocket, is shaped to fit our thigh or arm, the second fits the oval shape of our face. I do not know if, apart from showing that despite the size of the organization both companies remain innovative, it makes more sense. They supposedly offer the added value of tilting the smartphone lying down and displaying information without unlocking the screen and better ergonomics, but do you need it? It is rumored that Apple is also working on a curved screen, but according to rumors it will be a convex screen, rather than concave as presented by the Koreans. To accurately assess this would be necessary to use these devices, unfortunately they are currently unavailable, so there is probably nothing left but to note these attempts.
Flexible screens, on the other hand, have been announced for several years. One of the first prototypes was the Nokia Morph, which according to. The original idea was to be like plasticine, and its user could wear it on his wrist or fold and unfold it like a piece of paper.
Another idea for a flexible screen was also featured in „Minority Report” (ah those screenwriters from Spilberg!) It was something that resembled the size of tablets, which, instead of the form of a rectangular board, were shaped like a roll and unfolded between two handles. Through the use of flexible displays, are we to move again from tablets (no longer stone) to scrolls (no longer papyrus)? Flexible displays and devices seem to be more versatile and convenient, and after all, the quest for economy of movement and effort has always driven the proliferation of technological innovations.
Dreams of personalization, improving elements that are important to the individual user – camera, processor, battery, etc. – such a beautiful vision is dreamed up by the guys from Phonebloks and Motorola. Smartphone, which would consist of a motherboard, and the remaining modules can be freely added, increasing their parameters, seems to be a vision as tempting as unrealistic. Knowing Android's problems with fragmentation (… sorry differentiation) I do not think that any of the available operating systems will be able to function stably, on hardware, the configuration of which the user can manage, also reducing its performance.
To conclude and sum up. Many of the devices that today are more or less boldly introduced by manufacturers or described through the media straight from the laboratories and heads of their creators, are just noise in the evolution of. Let's not get too attached to any of them. Time will tell what will become popular and who won two bottles of whiskey.