Article out today on Fast Company, titled “The Smartphone Revolution is Over.” And I agree. In terms of form they’ve pretty much reached the limit of the current form factor. They got small, now they’re getting bigger, flatter, bigger screens, etc. Sure they might develop a model with a folding screen (to make it bigger again), or smaller (to fit on a wristwatch – oh joy!), or curvier, or in purple.
But personally, I think if products lead with “now available in a color” in their advertising (as Motorola’s Razr is doing) the category has jumped the shark a bit, so to speak.
The question is, what happens next? Since being able to communicate in any way you want, wherever and whenever you want – well, that’s not going away.
Coincidentally Google announced today that they will sell “Heads-Up Display Glasses” by the end of 2012, a pair of glasses that will be able to “stream information to the wearer’s eyeballs in real time.” Given advancements in voice interaction and jawbone-type microphones, why wouldn’t this be a form for a future “phone”? I’m actually of the opinion that the form factors are going to fragment, and potentially become modular a la Transformers…add or subtract whichever module you want or need.
And I’ve already talked about how there should/will be devices that are the “node points” for all communication and content, then send the right content to the right place – and how that will disintermediate the entertainment industry.
But so far, everyone’s still playing it boringly safe. I’m looking forward to seeing the impact Google’s glasses will have. Until then, it’s all been a little ho-hum.