When designing an e-learning course, you must consider content in addition to appearance. Both of these need to inspire motivation in a learner in order to keep their attention focused on working through a course, and not simply skimming the content in the hope that they finish it early. When looking at what keeps your…
Tech Preview 2013 - 7 Jan 2013
Looking back over 2012, it was a great year for gadgets. In this short article we have tried to look at some of the devices and technologies that could make an appearance in 2013.
Apple, iPhone 6, iPad 5 and iPad mini 2:
We’re expecting follow on devices for the iPhone, iPad and iPad mini during 2013, although the naming may follow a different path. The rumours are that the iPad mini will gain a retina display along with some other tweaks, if so, this will give it a good shot at being the best tablet computer available. A new iPhone is always eagerly anticipated and it’s looking likely this will be released later in the year. However, Apple may need to ensure that they regain the upperhand in technology, after the iPhone 5 wasn’t as well received as the rumours that surrounded it. It’ll be interesting to see if the next iPhone has NFC, if it does then it’s likely that mobile payments using a phone will take off in a big way. The iPad rumours suggest the next iteration of this market winning product could be thinner with more processing power and memory. Rumours are also suggesting the iPad 5 will be drawing inspiration from the mini and this could mean a new look to the device. We’re not even going to speculate on a full Apple TV!
2012 saw the launch of a superfast mobile network to a couple of major cities in the UK thanks to EE. Early in the year the government will be launching its highly anticipated 4G auction, the only question is if there be a new network in the mix or just the familiar faces.
Admitably, Google Glass may not be released this year, however, it is guaranteed to have a large amount of air time. Like some science fiction movies the idea is the glass just above your line-of-sight brings you a personal heads-up display. The brains behind the project hope it will eventually be able to do everything your smartphone can do. One competitor to Google glass, Vuzix, is seeking to outrun the giant by releasing a similar product earlier. Currently the Vuzix product is being released into the hands of developers.
Flexible screens may come into focus during 2013… and they have been a long time in making the transition from development to the production line. Users and manufacturers want clearer, cheaper, higher definition screens without added bulk and with low power usage, so any improvement in screen technology will generate massive hype. Rumours suggest that Samsung have an unbreakable folding screen that can be used in mobiles, if this is true then who knows what this could mean for all other mobile devices. This could bring more entertainment and power to our hands in ways we could have only dreamed of before.
Samsung’s Galaxy S4 and Note 7:
Many are expecting Samsung to unveil some highly competitive devices this year as the gadget war with Apple continues. Speculation is growing that a Galaxy Note 7 will be launched earlier in the year than later. Rumours suggest this will house a 1280 x 800 display resolution and run Android 4.1.2 Jelly Bean. Other tablet manufacturers Acer and Asus, may also be launching affordable 7-inch tablets to try and gain some market share. The Samsung Galaxy S4 should be announced soon even though Samsung only released the S3 about 6 months ago. The S3 is now facing some stiff competition from the Google Nexus 4 in the fast growing and changing Android market.
Rumours at the moment are about a possible Amazon phone, designed around the Amazon strategy for the Kindle, sell the product at cost price and link it fully to the Amazon Store for digital content. This is where Amazon makes the money. If the rumours are true and it’s anything like the Kindle Fire HD, this could be a very strategic move and an exciting one for those who are not into the eco-system of apps that Apple has built.
So far the PS3 and Xbox have largely dominated the dedicated gaming market, leaving barely enough space for the Wii and other smaller devices that casual gamers use. We can’t foresee the new Wii U or any other device breaking this two-horse race.
So, quite the exciting year ahead, we think it’s safe to say there will be some competitive gadgets being released this year. All eyes are now on the CES show in Las Vegas Jan 8-11, 2013.