In 1968, Alan Kay of Xerox PARC designed what he called a “personal, portable information manipulator.” The device, which might be described as the overweight, ugly offspring of an iPad and a Blackberry, was dubbed the “Dynabook.”
How the world has changed in 30 years. Given the advancement of iPhone development, iPad development, and mobile app development, bulky mobile computers are ancient history. From phones that do nearly everything except brush your teeth for you, to the ability to watch 3D even on your iPhone, our various “personal, portable information manipulator[s]” have utterly transformed the way we live, work, and play.
Having witnessed so many incredible developments in mobile technology over the last several years, what types of changes should we expect in the future? Here are a few ideas.
Development of 3D Technology
It’s sometimes hard to remember that the movie Avatar is only 2 1/2 years old. The movie ushered in a wave of 3D movies and 3D video games, but all without those silly, headache-inducing red and blue glasses.
New 3D technologies will not require glasses at all. However, these newer technologies are challenging for developers; the larger the screen, the harder it is to achieve a glasses-free 3D experience. That’s why 3D experts are looking at things like iPhone development and iPad development – mobile device screens are the perfect size for glasses-free 3D. According to ABI Research, a tech market intelligence company, 11% of mobile devices will offer glasses-free 3D technology by 2015.
The original 1991 ad for the Mac PowerBook (you can view it on YouTube) includes a woman who claims that the PowerBook allows her to always stay “connected.” Her idea of being “connected” is laughable today; after all, in 1991 Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was only seven years old and WiFi was still in the R&D phase.
Twenty years later, app development that makes social networking, social gaming, and other ways of staying truly connected to networks and individuals shows no signs of slowing down. New connectivity trends to watch out for include:
More games and apps using mobile devices’ GPS
More apps that use your friends’ activities to make recommendations for you
Games and interactive movies that use information from your social networking accounts will only get more popular
3D technology and new connectivity apps are just two of the many ways that mobile devices will evolve over the next several years. What else is coming our way? Only time will tell.