Techdirt Podcast Episode 132: Is There Any Smartphone Innovation Left?

from the not-so-smart-anymore? dept

Smartphones have been one of the most world-changing innovations of our time — and for a long time, smartphone design was a hotbed of innovation. But more recently that innovation seems to have stagnated. So where does this technology go next? That's the subject of this weeks episode, in which we try to figure out whether smartphone innovation is still happening.

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  • identicon
    Thad, 1 Aug 2017 @ 3:28pm

    Google's allegedly working on a new, non-Linux-based mobile OS, though I'm not sure they intend for it to look much different from Android to end users.

    I think there's a lot of niche potential for user-serviceable phones like the Fairphone, and GNU-based phones like Ubuntu Touch (abandoned by Canonical but still under development by the UBports community, and fairly mature), Plasma Mobile, and (I think?) Sailfish. I don't think it's likely that a new OS will break through the Apple/Google duopoly, but they could occupy a similar enthusiast niche to what Linux does on the desktop.

    That stuff's all evolutionary rather than revolutionary, though. As for any major shifts in how we use phones...well, if I knew that I'd be working on those projects myself.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • icon
    DB (profile), 1 Aug 2017 @ 5:46pm

    There are a huge number of potential innovations on the horizon. Many are based around spacial sensors and image processing -- stereoscopic vision, time-of-flight sensors, IR imagers, etc. Gesture recognition might become interesting, or entirely news ways of interacting with the device might become suddenly popular. Eye,and even focus tracking might become input methods.

    Who knows, after more than a century, typing might be gone in the blink of an eye.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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