Will smartphones be around for long?

One of the rather silly predictions that I made recently, more in jest than in sober seriousness, was that smartphones with small screens will not be around for that long, because tablets will take over the telephony functions, or there will be foldable or expandable smartphones. It might be a good time to rethink about it.

Whenever I go on the tube in London, I’m struck by the large number of people who are using smartphones. A good few years ago, many people would have been reading newspapers, and still quite a lot of people do, but more and more people are using smartphones, possibly reading online newspapers. The most important factor for small-screen devices in my view is that they can be used with one hand, and they do not require both hands to operate. In most cases, tablets require the use of both hands. And there is a limit to the physical size of the device that could be held and operated by one hand. While on the move using public transport, and often carrying a bag or umbrella or something, it is unrealistic to expect people to have both of their hands free. Given many people can spend quite a lot of time commuting each day, the amount of time spent on smartphones may be quite substantial, as well as regular.

For some people, smartphone has become the main, or even the only, device that they use to access the internet. Equally, many others have become adept at using different devices for different purposes and different occasions. Smartphones now seem to be part and parcel of modern-day life, and even though things can change dramatically and extremely quickly in consumer technology, it looks as though they will be around for some time, and my prediction is looking sillier all the time.