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Desktops are the Future of Mobile Devices (Kind of)

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A new post from I, Cringely called "The Secret of iOS 7" takes an engaging look at Apple's latest release by predicting products that are yet to come. The not-distant-at-all future predicted in the post involves desktop hubs and shell laptops, both simply monitor and keyboard husks waiting for a mobile device to connect with them. Even for the die-hard mouse-and-keyboard believers among us--those unnerved by Apple's transition from desktop company to mobile company, for example--it's an interesting idea.

While it's hard to say what Apple is planning for the coming years and debatable whether the post's predicted future is an improvement, a single, consolidated personal device would be a big innovation for both desktop and mobile computing. There is definitely something appealing to me about the idea of sitting down at my desk, at work or at home, and having my phone effortlessly interface with a monitor and keyboard. Lots of possibilities immediately come to mind, and neither the products nor the technology to bring such a set-up to fruition are far-fetched at all.

Then again, maybe there is something to be said for having a number of discrete devices. Check out the full post and see what you think. Does that future sound good to you?


Alied Pérez replied on Mon, 2013/09/23 - 3:59pm

 yes, I like that idea; I have been doing some (modest) attempts at home on that too; and it's not a new Apple "innovation" either. The Canonical guys are betting there with their "Ubuntu Edge" (I'm typing from memory), as well since some time ago. There have been some early attempts with other phones (Motorola, I guess, if my memory is still working).

Besides, a phone like the Nokia N8-00 (man. 2010, still my primary phone) features almost all pieces needed: 720p HDMI output (actual dedicated standard mini-hdmi connector, no fancy-only-my-brand-overpriced-adaptor), USB OTG (it supports, among other devices, mouse and keyboard; the down side is that does not support USB hubs, so choose either one), and independent Nokia 2mm charger plug, so you can have both host-mode USB and power, plus WiFi, VoIp, FM Tx/Rx, Bluetooh, etc. The down-side: its 680MHz CPU and only 256MB RAM. I could not try with the 808 PureView (it was not sold here in Argentina), but I guess it should be way better, specially on the USB part.

I guess that future is not that far. Current phones are more powerful than my PCs from a few years ago.

Cheers from Argentina


P.S. still, I believe my ethernet-wired--desktop will remain to be my primary computing device for a time. I love opening the case and throw the new Kingston-whatever-the-speed-is, or a new SATA-the-latest-spec SSD in it.

P.P.S. I'm a software developer.

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