There's so much talk about convergence these days when it comes to the gadgets you carry around with you. Apparently, we're supposed to expect our mobile phones to be music players, remote controls, pocket computers and navigation devices as well. However, for all that talk of convergence, why is it that we keep seeing new single-purpose devices hit the market? For about the 800th time in the last decade, Reuters is running a story about electronic paper, and how it's really (no, seriously!) about to come out for real. However, what's the killer app they see? The ability to read traditional newspapers on the train. Sorry, but that's generally not how these types of technologies catch on. They have to offer some real benefit for the user, that simply wasn't possible before. There are some benefits to reading the paper electronically, but unless there's some element that's vastly superior to what people do now (mixture of paper and web), a standalone device doesn't make much sense.
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