June 20, 2006

See you in 2008!

Three big coming disruptive trends, I think, will converge by 2008: (1)Ubiquitous wireless connectivity (wi-max or some other), (2)ultra-portable computing, and (3)applications-as-content.

We see hints of this already - through wireless connections in our home (I'm writing this at the kitchen table while
my kids are scarfing their chocolate chip waffles), web applications, etc. - but I think we'll be reaching an inflection point as these converge.

I don't know what form it'll take exactly - I don't think it'll be
Wi-Max or Origami exactly. But I do think it'll be of that form - not smart fridges and talking wristwatches, but general computing devices over generic, omnipresent (though not ever-present) connectivity.

Two interesting contenders in the application-content space:
XULRunner and Macromedia Flash.

My prognistication is predicated primarily on lack rather than abundance. It feels like, in the last 10 years (last, oh ... 7 or 8, for sure) that we haven't seen a behavioural shift enabled by new technology in the computing sector.

I'll contend there's nothing you really do now, that you couldn't nearly as easily have done then. Sure, things have gotten faster, better, and there's more stuff - but it doesn't seem like we've approached the next plateau yet. How old are the websites you visit most frequently? Or really what I mean is: how different are the behaviours they imply? Search, browse, IM, mail, music (ok, MAYBE video - but
my TV still does that better) are all pretty old hat.

I'm not sure you'd say that for any 5 year period leading up to the last 10 (or so) since the
computing revolution really began, in the 1940's.

Hints are there of what's coming: more web apps, more broadband and wireless (how cool was it when you got untethered for the first time?), notebooks outpacing desktops - but I think the inflection point is waiting for these few enabling technologies to converge (there's one more I didn't mention that I think is also coming) - and the next killer app to make them come alive.


Anonymous said...

I totally agree that instant access to all my digital stuff, from anywhere, at any time is where we are heading.

The ipod will be seen as a pre-cursor to this eventuality... except (at least for now) it requires users to sync with their PC's...

You might want to include Apple in your list of early contendors in the application-content space.

Cute kids by the way.



Sree Kotay said...

:) thanks, I like 'em.

Yeah - but I think Apple's closed system will eventually limit them (not that they won't make TONS of cash in the meantime).

Either the HW or SW's got to be open - I'd do SW if I were them; let other people load music on the iPods, too.

Anonymous said...

in terms of advertising on ipod's closed system, for example, while there are companies that have found ways to dynamically advertise on and track from the ipod (as opposed to merely hardcoding a video ad with the editorial video and tracking number of downloads), apple most likely will find and seal off. might be that apple will partner with one particular company for advertising - say google or aol - or do it themselves. in the end, it's a lot of content that they can monetize..