The mobile phone functionality we know and have become reliant on today has only really been around for just over a decade. But early iterations of mobile phones were making waves from as early as the 1970s.
Over the last few years we’ve seen these handheld gadgets evolve from big and bulky tools with retractable antennas to more compact and lightweight slide and flip phones. We’ve used physical and digital keypads and experienced the move from monochrome to full-colour displays.
At first, one could only make phone calls and send texts, but now our mobile devices allow us to do everything from reply to emails and order a taxi to find love and capture memories.
It may be hard to believe but the first iPhone was only released in 2007. And since then, the market for these handheld computers has exploded. To put this explosion in context – in 2017, just 10 years later, around 1.54 billion smartphones were sold across the globe. Looking back on how smartphones have evolved, one has to wonder where this technology will be in the next five, 10 or 50 years?
Here are a few of the hardware and software features and functionality that may become the norm in future smartphones.
- According to industry insiders, future devices will be made of different materials. Some reports suggest that smartphones will have ceramic cases, not metal. There are even suggestions that smartphones could one day be made of wood.
- From a screen perspective there is talk about retractable displays, flexible screens, curved screens and even a device that can bend/fold.
- When it comes to smartphone batteries, most of us will agree that this technology hasn’t advanced as much as users would like. But in the next few years, users can expect batteries made out of everything from foam and magnesium to graphene and gold nanowires, capable of super fast 30-second recharging and even air charging.
- Future smartphones will use augmented reality (AR) to offer users rich experiences by layering digital information on to objects in the real world. Imagine being able to take out your smartphone when you’re in a new city and an AR map brings all of the stores and restaurants nearby to life?
- With built in projectors, future smartphones could one day be turned into interactive gaming consoles – all you’ll need is a flat surface. As camera and voice technology improves, users could eventually be able to interact with objects and features projected on these screens.
- Voice control isn’t new, but in the future, it is only set to become more accurate and advanced. And combined with gesture controls, we could eventually be using our smart devices without even touching them.
- We’ve discussed how screens may change physically, but now it’s time to discuss how their use will evolve. While current smartphones provide a resolution that is sharper than what the human eye can perceive, the evolution of the smartphone will introduce 3D displays enabling users to enjoy hologram projections.
So, what does all of this mean for business?
Well, we already know that the future of business is mobile. As such, it is the businesses that embrace these tools and technologies, and successfully use them to boost user and customer experiences, that will really make their mark in the future.
To ensure you’re one of these businesses, you need to stay ahead of your competitors. Want some help doing so? Our monthly newsletter is a resource packed with all the latest happenings in the business, telecoms and digital space. Subscribe below.