Wednesday, November 28, 2007

I'll Pass on Smart Phones, Thank You!

Jack Trout has a great piece in Forbes magazine about why convergence is a pipe dream. Convergence refers to the idea that we will eventually have a single device that handles all our needs. The iPhone has been labeled a giant leap for convergence. Trout argues that the idea of getting something without a tradeoff is impossible. An excerpt:
Palm was wildly successful with organizers; then they introduced the unreliable and unremarkable Treo, essentially an organizer that makes phone calls as well ... BlackBerrys are great at e-mail, but the phone is barely adequate. The Motorola Q crashes almost as often as the Treo. The Apple iPhone is terrific for music and media, but lousy for e-mail and phoning. For marketing reasons, everybody is trying to cram all these complicated features into ever-sleeker, ever-thinner boxes, while also adding longer battery life, and so on. Invariably, smart-phone designers have to make compromises that mean some functions don't work especially well.

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