It is interesting to watch the cell phone and Internet tablet market. Cell phone have been around for many years and it has been fun to watch how the technology has improved, how the phone have gotten smaller and how the features have evolved. From the original Motorla "brick" released in 1973 to today's smart phone has been quite the evolution. And it seems that the evolution is reaching a point where these hand-held devices are so packed with features that the phone capabilities is a small component of the actual device. The ads often lists the features and you need to read the fine print to see any specs about the phone capabilities. Apple suffered the consequences of not focusing on the phone when they released the iPhone 4. Great toy but the phone was hard to use due to the antenna design.
Now with the introduction of the Internet tablets, the line between phone and computer is becoming narrower. Apple, once again, found that out the hard way when they did not have phone capbilities in their iPad. Of course people still bought them but were dissappointed with the lack of a phone and camera which seems to be the defacto standard for hand-held devices.
One player noticably missing from the mix is Microsoft. Bill Gates and company has been given much of the credit for the computer revolution but does not seem to embrace the cell phone market potential. Microsoft has never been innovators. Even their original software product, DOS, was a copy of CPM. They have tried serveral time to enter the market with dismal failure and a new attempt is on the horizon. MS is so far behind the leader, they will never catch up.
By the end of this year, the smart phone / Internet tablet market will be heating up. With iPad competitors on the horizon, MS in the market, RIM fighting to maintaining its smart phone lead, Apple releasing new devices and Nokia trying to maintain its cell phone market lead, it going to be a very interesting time for hand-held technologies.