Devices for Instructions
-Impaired"> There is a remote possibility that some devices using Windows CE 5.0 may make it by the fourth quarter of this year. The products generally will show up in late 2005 due to the development time needed to create both the hardware and the software that will best make use of the platform. More of the devices will be voice-enabled, something weve certainly seen in a number of cell phones but that will show up more broadly and consistently in automotive products, hand-held computers, A/V products and vertical offerings (kiosks, point of sale, etc.) Beyond just voice command, many of these devices will use VOIP so they can make better use of their connected nature and users can get in touch more easily.PDAs and smart phones will probably see the biggest change. A PDA could sense that its on the dash of a car and lower the display resolution, switch to GPS mode for navigation and queue up a set of songs that it transmits wirelessly to the radio. Since it is pulling power from the car, it also would pump up the display, and should a cell phone call come in, it would lower the radio volume and switch to cell-phone mode automatically. A smart phone could do many of the same things. Because this kind of thing would be automatic, those of us who are "instructions impaired" could find the results very compelling. That would make for an interesting, and probably lucrative, event for the developers when their products come to market. For us "consumers," well clearly have something to look forward to next year other than simply becoming another year older. Rob Enderle is the principal analyst for the Enderle Group, a company specializing in emerging personal technology. Check out eWEEKs Mobile & Wireless Center at http://wireless.eweek.com for the latest news, reviews and analysis. Be sure to add our eWEEK.com mobile and wireless news feed to your RSS newsreader or My Yahoo page:
Think of asking for help from an ATM, making a low-cost voice call from your PDA in a hot spot, or using single-button technical support built into a complex consumer electronics offering. You could even use a piece of exercise equipment that is connected to a virtual exercise class.