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Mark Atwood
tv+computers=computers. telephone+computers=?
So it turns out that the answer to the question "when computers and television converge, what will we have" is "computers". link.

So the next question is "when computers and telephones converge, what will we have?"

I think the answer is going to also going to be "computers". Just very portable ones.

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mangosteen From: mangosteen Date: March 12th, 2009 03:54 pm (UTC) (Link)
A cellphone is a very portable computer, and has been for years. How will this change?
fallenpegasus From: fallenpegasus Date: March 12th, 2009 04:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
And high end TVs have been dedicated embedded computers with a big screen and a stupid UI for many years now as well.

The point is the user perception of flexability and the range of solutions that the device can provide.

We're getting there much faster with the current gen of high end smartphones, like the iPhone, gPhone, etc, where the users spend more time in other apps than they do in the dialer/phone application.

Very quickly the social perception is going to fully shift, and most people will carry phones not because they want to make phone calls, but because they want to run mobile applications.
tcepsa From: tcepsa Date: March 13th, 2009 02:28 pm (UTC) (Link)
That's one of the reasons why I am as excited as I am about the Android platform and phones; I think they'll really help people make that shift from "Okay, this is a phone that I can do some PDA and e-mail and websurfing and a couple games on" to "This is a computer that I can also make phone calls on"
From: (Anonymous) Date: March 12th, 2009 05:47 pm (UTC) (Link)

Boiler + Computer = Warm house

My boiler has a simple computer in it to figure out how to optimally heat the house. Among other factors, it takes into account the current outside temperature to minimize energy use. Computers in all degrees of complexity are going everywhere to help manage energy consumption.

My boiler isn't very portable, though.
rhonan From: rhonan Date: March 12th, 2009 06:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
Um, I thought you already had a G1?
fallenpegasus From: fallenpegasus Date: March 13th, 2009 05:06 pm (UTC) (Link)
I do. But most people still "phones" not "handheld computers". But that's changing fast.
lishablog From: lishablog Date: March 13th, 2009 06:05 pm (UTC) (Link)
So, I was thinking of sending you to the videos that I did for Crictor on just this subject but a) I can't even bring myself to watch them and b) I just checked the one video that I think is decent in the series (least amount of stumbling in that damned language they speak here) but it doesn't have subtitles yet.

Anyhoo... I agree that the answer is very portable computers. The fact that devices like the iPod Touch, N810, and even the Samsung Q1 can be used as telephones when you put a program like fring or Skype onto them is a hint in that direction. The fact that devices that are being marketed as MID's by the likes of Compal, BenQ, Lenovo and others have a slot for a 3G sim card is another hint.

People don't buy the iPhone because it makes the best phone calls. They buy it because it does so many cool computer-y things. Ditto the G1.

In an interview I did with Jeff Pulver (again, for Crictor, but this one's in English), he talked about how it's a mistake to think of voice- or tv- (or anything else) -over-IP as being a separate thing. These are all just services that go over the same infrastructure, use the same basic tools with different tweaks. In the past they may have been completely separate, but we don't live in that past any more.

He was talking about the effect of the Internet on these markets, but our phones are part of the Network, too, even if not every voice packet gets sent via IP packets. (Although, I think it would be difficult to find a call that didn't travel over IP at some point on it's journey these days.)

So, what makes the difference between one phone handset and another in the market? It's not just how pretty it is (that's so 2000). It's what the phone can do, of course!
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