As we head swiftly into the new year, Livven gave us a look into the past 12 months for XDA. The tech world at large has had a great year, and there doesn’t seems to be any signs of next year slowing down. With that in mind, Azrienoch and I have put together 10 predictions for the next year of tech.
10 - The Samsung Galaxy S III will not, contrary to many rumors, have 3D. Not only would 3D technology increase Samsung’s precious device thickness, but the technology itself has a long way to go before overcoming the pitfalls it found in the LG Optimus 3D and HTC EVO 3D. We’d be surprised if a single mobile device bearing 3D pops into the lineup of even the remotest of companies in 2012.
9 - HTC will become the first truly GPL-compliant major Android manufacturer, following their recent move to unlock bootloaders previously locked by carrier demand, and their release of every available device’s source code. This means that the Android kernel source code is released the same day as the Android device. After that, either Sony Ericsson, Motorola, or Samsung will make the commitment next. Both Samsung and Sony Ericsson are close to GPL compliance now, and when Google’s purchase of Motorola is complete, Google will see to that schedule. On that note, Motorola will also begin unlocking bootloaders with the backing of Google.
8 - In the wake of lawsuits against Carrier IQ and the manufacturers and carriers who used it, Carrier IQ will go bankrupt. They may attempt a change in their company name, but Carrier IQ stocks will continue to plummet. Researchers and developers will begin work looking into Motricity, Verizon’s analytics and diagnostic equivalent to Carrier IQ, but the reaction to whatever is found won’t be as devastating.
7 - Apple will achieve minor victories against Android manufacturers for patents currently in suit. Depending on the changes to Android that come with the conclusion of Oracle’s lawsuit, Apple will file suits against Google directly, either out of desperation or emboldened by those minor victories, already mentioned.
6 - Research In Motion ceases to exist as anything but a service provider. This outcome may or may not be pushed over the edge by a couple of RIM executives getting drunk, breaking into prison, breaking out again, and jaywalking across every intersection they can find before being arrested for defacing a twenty dollar bill.
5 - HTC will produce the Jellybean Nexus phone, using an OMAP processor. Scoring points with developers by unlocking bootloaders and achieving GPL compliance, switching from Qualcomm to OMAP on their Sense phones, and Samsung occupied with creating the Nexus tablet, will all play into Google’s decision to contract HTC with the next Nexus phone.
4 - Sometime in mid 2012, Microsoft will release their highly anticipated attempt to revolutionize their OS with Windows 8. Whether or not it will be the wunderkind Microsoft hopes it will be has yet to be seen, but what it will do for sure is create a unified look and feel to all if their products. With users on PCs and Xbox 360s adopting to MetroUI, Windows Phone will be a comforting visual counterpart and cause a serious increase in sales. MetroUI support for cross platform functionality will mean a serious dedication to Windows Phone apps as well.
3 - As companies notice the growing disdain for carriers and contracts across the US and Canada, services like Republic Wireless will grow a serious following, forcing the carriers to eliminate 3 year agreements and return unlimited data. A happy accident of this situation will be a carrier-released, 100% CyanogenMod phone.
2 - Oracle and Google will continue to battle throughout 2012. It will become clear that neither organization is interested in a settlement or compromise. By the time Google finally wins, Android will be the last major project using Java, forcing Oracle to sell Java to Google.
1 - Samsung will leverage their existing relationship with Intel and Microsoft from the Windows 8 tablet to gain favor with Google to make a Google approved Tablet with an ATOM processor. This “Nexus Tablet” will be the first x86 Android Tablet, likely sporting Jellybean.
On behalf of all the staff at XDA, we’d like to wish everyone a safe and happy New Year!