1. Amazon Phone .. With No cellular Voice calls. I predict the Amazon will enter the smartphone space. Not from buying RIM as has been rumored and not just another carrier supported device. I expect Amazon will enter with a low cost device that does VoIP over data only with no cellular calling dramatically lowering the monthly cost of a smartphone. This Carrier disruptive service will likely be provided by LightSquared or Clearwire plus Amazon can further supplement the cost based on expected service and merchandise sales.
2. 7″ Tablets Beat 10″ Tablets – The Tab and Fire have already proven there is a market for a smaller Tablet that fits in jackets, lab coats and pocketbooks. When Apple joins in with a 7 inch iPad I predict these may out sell the existing 10 inch standard.
3. Touch Less Gestures – The iPhone and iPad got everyone used to touching their device ( even standard displays that do nothing in return… ) In 2012 new techniques based on hand gestures and device cameras will start to appear in select Smartphones and Tablets. Maybe we will start to wave at our old monitors soon and expect something to happen.
4. Siri Goes To Work – The iPhone 4S did a great job introducing the power of voice input to the masses although for the most part Siri has been used for simple tasks like reminders, texts and alarms. In 2012 Siri and other Voice driven apps will be put to work in multiple work applications beyond the existing specialized verticals like healthcare. The real explosion will happen when Apple opens up Siri to developers .. watch for WWDC announcements.
5. NirvanaPhones Go Pervasive
– I have been predicting this one for a long time.. but 2012 will be the year that most high end smartphones will provide high resolution video-out enabling connection to full sized displays and keyboards. This along with an app like Citrix Receiver accessing Virtual or remote desktops makes them qualify as a true NirvanaPhone
. A new standard called MHL
that combines Video and USB in a Micro USB connector will help standardize the issues around proprietary docks. ( like what held back the ATRIX in 2011 ) Some will say that the increase in popularity of Tablets will make NirvanaPhones less compelling and to some extent that is true given the added mobility and availability of Tablets. Although the same use case of plugging into large displays and keyboards will also be possible qualifying some tablets as a “Nirvana Device”.
6. iOS Kills Flash .. On the Desktop – In 2012 if your website relies on Flash your losing significant traffic and business. iOS and the iPad will become part of the standard testing matrix for compatibility just like testing for multiple browsers. The popularity of iOS and the population it represents will be too significant to ignore. This will in turn expedite the adoption of HTML5 as a Flash alternative.
7. BYOD Exceeds Corporate Owned Mobile Devices – 2012 will be the year that ” Bring Your Own Device ” out numbers the traditional company supplied device. The user pull, executive pressure and cost benefits will compel the majority of businesses to support or at least allow BYOD. The key for IT is to support this effort in a safe way without exposing the company to significant security risks.
8. Massive Security Breach – This will be the year of a significant mobile security breach, probably on the Android platform. This has been predicted before but so far most issues have been over hyped with limited actual impact. I think 2012 will see a significant incident that reminds IT organizations of the risks of unmanaged data and apps on mobile phones.
9. Windows Phone Gains Share … And Respect – Microsoft knows how important Mobility is and will not give up at any cost. The deal with Nokia will start to pay off and OEM fears of the Motorola -Google acquisition plus patent protection will drive more OEMs to offer Windows Phone 7 devices. I expect WP7 and BlackBerry to be fighting out for 3rd place.
10. Health Monitors – The FitBit and the Jawbone Up provided a taste of Mobile device enabled health monitors for early adopters. 2012 will see an explosion of health related apps and devices driving this category to go mainstream. This kind of app will also further the pressure for BYOD vs company owned devices.
What do you predict ?