Random Thoughts — The Wireless Mobile Web

We’ve been pretty much accustomed to having web access the past number of  years now on laptops, tablet PC’s or home computers thanks to WiFi, and even more so since the introduction of Apple’s iPhone.

Since the iPhone came out, and gave people true web access from anywhere without having to carry multiple devices, letting us view the web the way it was designed (anyone who had a Blackberry device and tried web surfing pre-iPhone knows what I’m talking about), it now seems all the phone makers have followed suit with their smartphones, hoping to be the ultimate iPhone killer.

This post is not so much about the iPhone, or other smartphones, but something I wrote about nearly 8 years ago. While at Stellcom, I was pretty hot about where we’d be in less than 10 years with technology and devices we could carry in our pockets that would let us surf the web, see movie previews as we drove past a theatre, and even buy tickets. This was before the advent of 3G. There wasn’t a 3G network, and we were still pretty much in what was the first generation phone or data network – eg it was very slow for any data transfers.

So, I present to you a white paper I wrote on what I called the wireless video world, though I do talk about how wireless devices would allow us to do so much more. I focused on video because I was really into video production and streaming, knowing someday soon people would be able to watch real time video on handheld wireless devices (FloTV anyone?).

Qualcomm hadn’t even begun to work on it yet, but a small company in San Diego called Packet Video had, though what they offered could be considered at the time something similar to the very early days of Apple’s QuickTIme — 5 frames per second video sent in packets to one’s handheld device. Note that only some phones allowed this as well as some early handheld devices, tethered via WiFi. The Blackberry could not – it was merely a portable email device when it first hit the streets.

So, I give to you the white paper I wrote. Keep in mind this was written about 8 years ago. Though my writing has improved over the years (whose doesn’t?), you should get the gist of what I was getting at at the time. I don’t consider myself any kind of futurist or Svengali of Technology. At the time I was just a senior designer, but I  wanted to take my best guess as where technology should be heading.  I think I came pretty close, but I’ll let you decide.

Although the paper was in it’s second draft (I never got to finish it), I challenge you to look at what I predict in it, and then look at what we have available today, less than 10 years later.


2 thoughts on “Random Thoughts — The Wireless Mobile Web

  1. Thanks Steve.
    As far as where technology’s going to be in 10 years I don’t really know yet. But if one goes with the Japanese school girl theory, whatever they’re doing now will be the big thing in about 5 years.

    Meanwhile I’m waiting for my hovercar that was promised 20 years ago…

    Seriously though, I think it will become mainstream in the next 6 to 8 years for people to not need any cash or credit cards on them. All of that information will be accessible via our mobile handheld devices, and as we buy stuff in the store and go to check out, the register will handshake with your mobile device, access your bank info, draw the amount from your account via debit, or you can tell it to charge via credit card account. Afterwards your receipt is both stored on your device as well as emailed to you (Apple emails receipts now).
    If you lose your device and someone else tries to access your data, it automatically wipes any information it has stored within minutes since each one is paired to its owner using some form of biometrics built into the case.

    At least that’s how I see it. Hmmm. Maybe that should be in my next blog post.

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