In 2014, One Direction will inevitably continue to go from strength to strength, thoroughly establishing themselves as one of the all time great recording artists; Danny Dyer will take Eastenders to new highs, picking up an Emmy for Best International Soap Newcomer in the process; and the Xbox One will pound the PS4 into the ground (or vice-versa).
But we’re not here to talk groundbreaking entertainment; we’re here to talk mobile phones and tablets. I’ve been gazing into my crystal ball, and you’ll never guess what I’ve seen.
Apple’s range of iDevices will diversify
While Android devices are available at anything from 3 to 13in, Apple currently sits at 3.5in (iPhone 4S), 4in (iPhone 5, iPhone 5s, iPod touch fifth gen), 7.9in (iPad mini, iPad mini Retina), and 9.7in (iPad 2, iPad Air).
Back at the end of 2012 (I found it, yes!), I pointed out that there’s a lovely gap between the 4in iPhone and the 7.9in iPad mini, begging for a 6in iPhone to snuggle in.
Similarly, I suggested that Apple might introduce a gargantuan iPad tablet at 13in. I’m like some sort of prophet; who knew?
See, in 2014, both of those things are tipped to become a reality. The rumour mill can’t quite settle on a size for the iPhone 6 (4.7in? 5in? 5.7in? 6in?), even going as far as to suggest that there’ll be two sizes, while it’s generally accepted that the iPad Pro will weigh in at 12.9in – possibly with an optional keyboard.
And not forgetting the iWatch, which brings us to…
The smartwatch explosion
Going hand-in-hand with flexible display technology as the Next Big Things, it’s wearable tech. More specifically: smartwatches (no offence, Google Glass).
Smartwatches have been around for a while now; they’re far from a spanking new concept, but they look set to explode in 2014.
The much-discussed boom will inevitably be helped along by the arrival of Apple’s iWatch. It’s been rumoured for almost a year now, and while the specifics remain elusive, it’s widely tipped to launch in the second half of 2014, at which point people will wonder how they survived with naked wrists.
Why smartwatches? Because, uhm, you can check notifications without taking your phone out of your pocket, and make calls by holding your wrist up to your head like an actual idiot.
Yes, we’re cynical, but then we were cynical about tablets (being luxury devices with little additional functionality above smartphones), and look what happened there. Moral of the story: don’t listen to us.
Samsung will continue to pump out an endless array of baffling devices
It’s interesting that releasing an endless array of ultimately confusing devices is credited with causing - or at least contributing towards - HTC’s downfall, while the same tactic has helped Samsung secure its position as the world’s number one smartphone manufacturer. Go figure.
We’re only a week and a bit into 2014, and already it’s clear that Samsung has no intention of changing up. We met four new tablets at CES 2014; the Samsung Galaxy Tab 3 Lite is tipped to offer much in the way of wallet-friendliness (and little in terms of specs); and MWC 2014 will likely welcome the Samsung Galaxy Grand Neo and Galaxy Note 3 Neo.
Not forgetting the next Sammo flagship, the Samsung Galaxy S5, and the first in the ultra-premium Samsung Galaxy F range, the latter tipped to come in an HTC One-style metal casing (the HTC One having garnered endless praise for its design in 2013).
Er, I didn’t mean to ramble on for quite so long. Looks like there’ll be a part 2 next week. Which conveniently gives me time to consider what else I’m gonna write about, ahem…