Thursday, July 24, 2008

Future trends for Cell phones, PDAs and Mobile Internet Devices

These days, our cell phones can take and send pictures/video. We can text message, download ringtones, watch streaming music video and even download and play mobile games. Not only that we can watch DMB and surf internet as well. The services available now couldn't even be imagined by most of us 10 years ago. The rapid advancements in information and communication technology have made it possible to do all these things. Before lunching 2G in Finland for the first time in 1991, today’s revolutionary 3G/4G communication were out of imagination. 

PDA is a handheld computer having many uses: calculation, use as a clock and calendar, accessing the Internet, sending and receiving E-mails, word processing, use as an address book, making and writing on spreadsheets, playing computer games and Global Positioning System (GPS). PDAs can access the Internet, intranets or extranets via Wi-Fi, or Wireless Wide-Area Networks (WWANs). Many PDAs employ touch screen technology. 

Mobile Internet Device (MID) gives an internet experience in our pocket. MID represent a portable and mobile devices category that gives wireless connectivity and long battery life. Samsung Q1, is an example of Mobile Internet Device, comes with a 7" (18 cm) LCD and exists in several different versions.

However, people are beginning to appreciate the value of connecting to the internet from their portable mobile devices. Carrying multiple devices is not convenient, so they prefer single device having versatile capabilities. New generation cell phones (smart phones) are capable of performing PDA’s tasks. Today most smart phones sold worldwide incorporate at least one advanced feature. Competition among phone manufacturers is primarily based upon a race to add additional features within accepted price ranges. The smart phones (with 4G+ or future technological standard) in the near future will bring the complete solution for the user by providing all in one solution.

The iPhone is a one example of the media based mobile device. Mobile companies they are selling iPhones are generating revenue not only by selling a phone plan, but also charging on bandwidth for audio and video downloads. Also, they are making money through mobile marketing.

Technically, in my opinion, in the future cell phones will dominate the future internet. Because IEEE 802.11 is not channelized, so control packets, such as RTS, CTS, and ACK, use the same channel as data packets. This leads to complex arbitration schemes and potentially unfair bandwidth allocation due to hidden and exposed terminals. Cell phones use channelized media, which intrinsically share the wireless medium better and are immune to a variety of hidden terminal problems. Moreover, unlike a WiFi-based PDA, a cell phone cannot be blocked from accessing the channel because the data channel is hogged by another cell phone. For these reasons, it appears that a channelized cell phone may better use wireless spectrum than a WiFi-based laptop or PDA. Incidentally, cell phone spectrum is licensed, so it is also immune to interference from cordless phones and microwave ovens that occupy the unlicensed ISM bands.

Generally, these handheld devices will become powerful computing devices, comparable to desktop systems. But there will be no market for standalone, handheld devices like only PDA, MID or Cell phones. Growing popularity shows all portable devices including cell phones, PDA and Mobile Internet Devices will come in one device.

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