It’s the start of the year and you might be wondering what’s in store for us from the IT industry in 2012. Will there be a new breed of computing device that will change how we perceive computers? Like the netbooks a few years ago or tablets last year? What will the mobile phone industry look like this coming year?
Allow us to share to you what we think are the top 5 tech trends this coming year here in the Philippines.
Rise of the Ultrabooks
The Ultrabooks are super thin, light, and powerful with decent battery life notebooks. We saw a teaser of what Ultrabooks are capable of, their design, and price in the last quarter of 2011.
Expect for manufacturers to kick it up a notch by introducing newer design or more affordable configurations for Ultrabooks this year. A decent Ultrabook at 40k or under would entice a lot of users to switch from a regular laptop or netbook to one of these sexy beasts.
Tablets and smartphones continuity
Sadly I’m not foreseeing any new innovations or features when it comes to tablets and smartphones. Instead, companies will just continue to extend and enhance their current lineup.
What a lot of people are expecting is the emergence of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich devices and Nokia’s Window Phones. The most interesting is Android 4.0 because it will force manufacturers to push for dual-core processor devices. Maybe we’ll be seeing affordable dual-core Android phones this year and with that, really cheap entry-level smartphones. More Galaxy Y variant from all manufacturers perhaps?
In the case of tablets, the upcoming iPad 3 should be interesting while we’re going to see even more new Android tablets in all shapes and sizes.
Microsoft’s Windows 8 is expected to be released this year. We’ve seen the beta a few months back and the large-scale Metro UI looks to be a really nice fit for tablets. Unlike Android’s issues with fragmentation, Windows 8 can easily interface with Windows Mobile phones so we’ll probably be seeing Windows-based tablets and phones to be a seamless extension of your desktop/laptop.
Getting into the Cloud
Probably the major factor hampering the use of cloud computing in the Philippines is bandwidth (which is also the source of other tech-related problems) but with Apple’s introduction of the iCloud late last year, more people would see the value of doing common tasks online.
I still see a lot of people are not aware that they can create/edit Word and Excel files online with just their browser. Dropbox is immensely popular with smartphone users and we’ll see more features built into it with their Automator which allows you to automate tasks whenever you upload files. We’ll probably see cloud computing become more popular not only to consumers but also to the enterprise.
Emergence of NFC applications
NFC or near field communications is like Bluetooth but made easier and more secure. NFC-enabled devices can communicate with each other by just being near one another. We’ve seen this feature in Nokia smartphones, new BlackBerries, and the Samsung Galaxy S2 just to name a few.
Right now, the only application we’ve seen is pairing Nokia phones to NFC-enabled speakers and headphones but this year, newer application for the technology could crop up. We could probably see NFC applications for gaming, file management and to what I think the best use of NFC is”¦ mobile payment. Want to pay for gas? Just tap your phone onto an NFC scanner and key in your secure code. I do hope we could see Google Wallet here in the country.
Of course, some of these are just speculations based on news that we heard in 2011 but still they’re pretty much what we’ll have for 2012. Sadly, I’m not seeing any innovations when it comes to photography. It’s been stale since 2 years ago when micro 4/3rds came out. Same with gaming, Microsoft Kinect was awesome last year and I’m not seeing anybody topping that this year. Augmented reality perhaps but it’s still a long way.
So what are you excited about for 2012?