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December 30, 2011

Predictions for 2012

Filed under: Main — Tags: — admin @ 12:01 am

Here I go again! Trying to divine what’s coming up for the year 2012 in high-tech.

Because I’m usually wrong, I should just start out by making a bunch of predictions and then reversing them. But no, I feel the need to pontificate.

Routine, Boring, Certain Predictions

The year 2012 will see the following predictable goodies: The iPad 3, the iPhone 5, and Windows 8.

Will the iPad 3 have a retina display? I hope so. That would be cool. Having a USB port would also be cool, putting the iPad 3 on a par with my Galaxy Tab 10.1.

Will the iPhone 5 feature a new design? How about 4G speed? That’s something Samsung has been poking fun at in recent commercials. I must say, 4G is pretty awesome (as long as you’re on an unlimited data plan, of course). It’s silly that the Apple fanboys have to wait, but they’re silly anyway so that’s not news.

Windows 8 supposedly goes into beta in the first quarter of 2012, so we could see the new OS by the summer and definitely by the fall. I predict it will be called Windows 8.

Ancillary prediction: You’ll see Office 2012 next year as well. I’ve not heard anything about it, and I’m only guessing that they’ll be calling it Office 2012, though “Touch Office” or something similar may be in the works. That’s assuming that Office 2012 borrows heavily on Windows 8 touchscreen interface design.

Apple TV

The Big Tech News of 2012 is the dawn of Apple TV, which was supposedly one of Steve Jobs last projects at Apple. My guess: It will be stunning.

Jobs is all about the interface and Apple is all about being cool with elegant design. I predict that Apple will redefine television, especially the remote control. I predict the control will have one button and be used like the Wii game controller. Or perhaps the TV will interpret your gestures and you will be the remote control?

Apple TV will feature software that integrated broadcast TV, cable, YouTube, and streaming Internet into one convenient package. If successful, it will redefine the TV paradigm. The job of “television network programmer” will go away as people finally get to choose what to watch and when to watch it. If successful, you’ll see Apple TV stir up television the same way that the Internet stirred up print media. Yes, there will be massive wailing and gnashing of teeth by the traditional TV networks and cable companies. It’s going to be fun to watch!

Touchscreen Monitors and Touchpads

Windows 8 has the potential to confuse you with many things. The Interface is completely redesigned, which is going to annoy traditional computer users such as myself, but also confuse regular folk who are used to the desktop metaphor. Beyond that, it’s a touchscreen interface, which means you’ll see a boost in the sale of touchscreen monitors and touchpads to replace the traditional mouse.

Steve Jobs claimed that touchscreen monitors would never work. PCs have them now, but they’re not that popular. The reason? Your arm gets tired. It’s difficult to keep holding up your arm to manipulate objects on the screen. Therefore, more than new touchscreen monitor, you’ll probably see touchpad accessories for touch-input.

Perhaps Microsoft will release something for the PC like the Kinect technology for the Xbox? Just like I predicted with Apple TV (above), you may become the controller for your PC. That would be cool.

Bigger Screens on the Cell Phones

Your cell phone can be no bigger than you pocket. That’s the size limitation. And that size will be pushed next year, as more cell phones with larger, higher-resolution displays hit the market.

Seriously: Cell phones can get faster processors. They can get newer software. But the only place hardware has to go for improvement is a larger display. I predict you’ll see them next year.

2012

Nope, I don’t think that the world will end on December 21, 2012. It certainly will be an interesting date, but so was January 1, 2000. Remember how everything was going to fail because of the Y2K problem? I think the Mayan Calendar’s 12-21-12 is simply their own Y2K. It will be No Big Deal, but it will make a lot of news.

Off-the-wall Prediction

Get used to saying, “President Romney.”

4 Comments

  1. I never understood how you could upgrade the AppleTV. It already had HDMI, build in WiFi, and the ability to use a lot of online music and movie services (Hell, they even went the extra mile and made the second one smaller). I thought they would add some sort of built in storage to download movies or music, they could milk a lot more money by putting iTunes on the AppleTV. I don’t believe in motion controls.
    The Wii was abysmal, only registering 50% of your movements, if you’re lucky. And the Kinect works, but its fussy. Really fussy. It makes you jump through hoop after hoop, and if you don’t do everything exactly right, it crosses its arms and refuses to do anything.

    Which brings me to your Windows 8 prediction. I think you’re right, I’ve seen the Windows 8 beta stuff, and it looks like Windows 7 phone on a desktop. And honestly I don’t think it’ll work. It’ll be a total mess, there’s a reason that the standard template for a desktop hasn’t changed for the past 30 years.

    Comment by gamerguy473 — December 30, 2011 @ 7:18 am

  2. Given Microsoft’s track record of not understanding the market (thanks to their “Usability Labs” and the reverse psychology they use there), plus the fact that this is an even release of Windows, I don’t have hopes for Windows 8. Remember:

    Windows 95 – BAD
    Windows 98 – GOOD
    Windows ME – BAD
    Windows XP – GOOD
    Windows Vista – BAD
    Windows 7 – GOOD
    Windows 8 – ???

    Comment by admin — December 30, 2011 @ 10:18 am

  3. Windows 95 was bad?

    Comment by linuxlove — December 31, 2011 @ 8:48 am

  4. Windows 95 was bad?

    It was an improvement over Windows 3.1 and DOS, and it was its own operating system. But in the grand scheme, Windows 98 was so much better that people re-assessed their views on 95. Eventually people concurred that it wasn’t as good as it could have been.

    Comment by admin — December 31, 2011 @ 9:35 am

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