Anyone born in the 1980s remembers Inspector Gadget’s feisty niece, Penny. Penny had a cool book/computer thingy not totally unlike your old iPad. Remember when the idea of that little book-puter was the thing of – quite literally for some of our team – dreams?
Well, now you’ve got your old iPad, the New iPad, the Asus Transformer, Kindle, the Samsung Note and a bunch of other tech misfits that could easily pass for Penny’s book-puter. We’re living our childhood dreams, baby!
Oh but then there’s this seedy underbelly of tech lust where we admit, privately and with a sense of shame, that when we sell laptops, smartphones and tablets, we’ve not really used all the cool gadget-y features we once kicked up such a fuss about.
Item #1 Libby’s Nokia N900 Smartphone
Libby updates our Twitter feed and is an avid fan of tea and Oreos. She has a Nokia N900 that she chose carefully twenty-three months ago after lots of research. The N900 won because it has a QWERTY keyboard, calendar, camera, blah, blah, blah. All lovely and concealed within one lovely handset – all new, all convenient and easy to use! But Libby is the first to admit she rarely uses anything but the basic call/text/browse features. Why? Because a tiny flaw in something like touchscreen response time can ruin everything. Back to pen and paper she goes.
Item #2 Jon’s Samsung E330 Non-Smartphone (gasp!)
“What’s with trying to create one single bit of tech that does everything? I have a phone to make calls and texts. I have a GPS in my car, an iPod for music, an old Kindle, an old iPad (because who even uses Facetime!) and a Macbook. That’s it. I’m done upgrading, re-learning, messing about with chargers and relying on one poxy gadget to get me through my life! You will be grasping this Samsung E330 from my cold, dead, battle-scared hands!”
Enough said? It’s true though, at what point will we be happy with the megapixels on our smartphone camera, touchscreen response, usability and all the other odds and ends that make up the perfect smartphone?
When you sell laptops that we buy for healthy rates, it’s usually because you want to get paid to upgrade to something new. We love technology, you do too and that’s why we’re all after the Holy Grail of gadgets (which we’ll recognise when we see it, won’t we?) But how many of us really use all the super features of our smartphones? And on that note…
According to Eric Schmidt’s Google keynote address at the Mobile World Conference in Barcelona, smartphone features are kind of heading for obsoletion in the coming years, as technology veers towards the same kind of “assumed utility” electricity is today. Future tech won’t be so much about the latest gimmicky smartphone features, but about absolute connectivity to whatever you need, simply and efficiently, anywhere in the world with the minimum of hardware. And we’ll be here when you want to sell laptops, old iPads and stuff to fund this fabulously fluid future of super-connectivity!