Are Flexible Smartphones On The Horizon?

LG, this morning, announced “the world’s first flexible OLED panel for smartphones.” They also very quickly bragged that they would be announcing products – within a year’s time – that would feature the flexible screens. That said, flexible displays don’t necessarily preclude flexible devices; the engineering behind making flexible electronic innards is still a long way off, and even if it were it would likely be prohibitively expensive. For the moment, the most we should expect is a device that curves before the technology is sufficiently developed (and sufficiently inexpensive) for mass consumption. So, succinctly, the answer to the title is: no. 

TV Tech: 4K And OLED Showcases At CES

CES has always been about jaw-dropping TV tech and this year will be no different. While Samsung’s $9,000 55 inch OLED TV made a big splash in 2012, we might see less innovation and more focus on “semi-affordable” products for existing technologies like 4K ultra HD along with OLED.  It is also great to see CES hosting a full-day Second Screen Summit with executives from major networks, tech companies, and agencies including UM¹s Michael Barrett.  We’ll be sure to fill you in on details of that event, which has a special panel dedicated to opportunities in the advertising world.

Is Waveface the future of screens?

Waveface-Light (Asus)With all the hype about 3D television, bendable OLED was not on the list of top CES breakthroughs from most reporters. In fact, the display wasn’t even in the main hall; instead it was tucked away, in just a corner of the Asus booth. “Waveface” is a few years off from hitting the consumer market, but the implications have the retailer in me excited, my eyes filled with the potential communications applications.

What are OLED screens? Micro thin, seamless, smooth, high definition video screens capable of bending around objects. To me it’s the coolest display at CES this year. Imagine a wrist watch where the band, the display, the case – everything – was a seamless video bracelet that wraps around your wrist. Sports scores, weather information, photos of your kids, all moving across the band in one continuous circle of light. Oh and probably the time as well. Continue reading “Is Waveface the future of screens?”

Google just changed the wireless game

Google changes the game for mobile (Google)At the Android press event this morning, Google turned the wireless industry on its head.  On the surface, it looked like Google only introduced a new (albeit very slick) phone, the NexusOne.  But below the surface, there’s a lot more going on.

The centerpiece of the event was the Nexus One phone.  Slightly thinner and lighter than the iPhone, the Nexus One boasts a 1GHz Snapdragon processor from Qualcomm (the fastest mobile phone processor on the market), a 5 megapixel camera with LED flash, dual microphones for noise cancellation, and my favorite bit of all, a 3.7 inch 480×800 OLED screen.  This phone is a powerhouse, and while some in the industry are looking at the current carrier exclusivity of T-mobile (currently the 4th place carrier in the US), it makes a lot more sense when one considers that they just upgraded their network to 7.2 Mbps 3G, twice the speed of AT&T’s current network.

But this barely scratches the surface.  Continue reading “Google just changed the wireless game”

Mobile Evolution: “Robocop-esque”

evolutionofmobileThis Wednesday, I’ll be speaking on a panel at ThinkLA. I’ll be presenting a few short slides on the evolution of mobile specific to the mobile web and applications. Though the panel should be interesting, the evolution of mobile is a much broader topic – one that’s inspired delving into mobile’s future relating to user input and output.

Ok, that last bit sounded boring. Here’s a video of the sixth sense concept from MIT, which presents some of these concepts in a much more interesting manner. The system MIT designed uses a projector to deliver information, and a camera to input controls. This could be the future evolution of mobile input and output – from keypads and screens to projectors and cameras. Continue reading “Mobile Evolution: “Robocop-esque””