'Hot gadgets' to dominate next decade

Innovations will continue to catch users by surprise, says a study. (REUTERS)

 

 

The next 10 years will see the emergence of hot gadgets as ongoing technological innovations give rise to newer applications coupled with bandwidth growth, according to findings of a survey.

According to a survey by Pew Research Centre, innovation will continue to catch users by surprise with hot gadgets that even today's savviest innovators may not anticipate.

"Trends and patterns that we will continue to see swings between centralisation and decentralisation, openness and walled gardens, increasing growth of mobile and local information, search and aggregation, but we have no idea what the major gadgets and applications of 2020 will be," said David Sifry, CEO of Offbeat Guides, co-founder of Technorati.

"Most of the top websites of 10 years ago are no longer in the top 10 and we never would have imagined many of the hot gadgets available today in 1999," he added.

"Ten years is not very long, even in internet years. The single biggest change over the past 10 years, I think, has been the prevalence of mobile devices. I got my first iPod nine years ago, but had other digital music players long before that.

"I've been using RIMs since well before they had filed the BlackBerry trademark, again more like 15 years ago," he said. Bill Woodcock, Research Director, Packet Clearing House, a non-profit research organisation, said: "Cloud computing has been talked about for more than 10 years and IPv6 is now 15 years old as well, and neither of those has yet predominated. In short, looking at today's popular technologies, I don't see many that weren't already thoroughly conceived of 10 years ago."

Some of 2020's hot new gadgets are bound to come out of the blue. But for North Americans, the Next Big Thing will be an exponential jump in a well-known commodity: bandwidth.

Residential bandwidth scarcity in both Canada and the US has held back the availability of immersive environments for personal messaging and multi-player online gaming, not to mention telemedicine, telecommuting, real hi-definition entertainment and distance learning.

Most of the users are still stuck with a single-digit Mbit/s connection; highly asymmetric downlink/uplink architectures; high prices; and few choices in service provider.

"If we can get, say, 30 per cent of North American homes on a last mile of 50 megs down and 20 megs up by 2020, we'll experience a sea-change in our online lives. This development will become especially important as more devices become networked, up to and including our kitchen appliances," the report said.

 

 

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