ABI Research: What's NOT Going to Happen in 2011

For the sixth consecutive year, ABI Research puts a different twist on the traditional December activity of surveying the year just past and speculating about what the new one will bring, with a white paper titled “What's NOT Going to Happen in 2011.”

As 2010 winds down, we seem to be receiving conflicting messages. Economic recovery is slow, but corporate profits are up. Budgets are tight, yet innovative companies continue to rewrite the rule-books. So it's a bold pundit who will make definitive statements about what is going to happen even in the short-term. That doesn't stop many from trying though, often with hilarious results.

Slightly easier is discerning the developments that are unlikely to take place in the coming year. So nearly two dozen of ABI Research's experts have put their heads together to debunk some of the most-hyped predictions about what will happen in tech-related industries around the world. They cover a vast range of topics including mobile devices and applications, femtocells, mobile commerce, home entertainment, 4-G, Wi-Fi, telematics and location-based services, mobile networks and mobile Internet devices, home networking, automotive technologies, RFID and NFC, and much more.

  • The holiday shopping season is upon us, and some say — where have we heard this before? — that Real Soon Now mobile marketing will transform our buying habits. Or not!
  • Location-based advertising will NOT be huge.
  • So thank goodness all those shopping offers are still coming into the “conventional” Internet we access at home and in the office. Because smart phones won't replace computing devices for access to the Internet.
  • Sometimes there's no getting around it: Internet or no, you just have to go out to shop. In the US and other spread-out countries, that usually means driving (unless you're rich enough to have a chauffeur!) What a hassle, especially the parking! But Google revealed in October that a vehicle it developed had been quietly driving itself around California. The car was doing all the navigating and driving, and was capable of unconventional parking maneuvers. Public reaction to one article covered the gamut from “I want this yesterday” to “You can pry my car keys from my cold, dead hands.” But we won't see self-driving cars in 2011.
  • OK, forget the auto-pilot. The all-electric Nissan Leaf debuted in a number of countries in 2010, but guess what, we're NOT all rushing to buy electric cars.
  • Whether we're driving electric or petroleum-fueled cars, we have become ever-more addicted to our navigation devices, and smart phone navigation has been making serious inroads in this market. But they won't complete their conquest of the car in 2011.
  • So what is on your holiday wish-list this year? And if you can't have it in December, what tech gadget do you crave in 2011? Want a quad core smart phone? The smart phone market will see eventually quad core phones, just not in 2011.
  • There's another kind of smart phone that hype-merchants have been touting: the NFC-enabled one. But US consumers won't be giving up their wallets in favor of NFC-capable smart phones in 2011.
  • Video games are of course perennial holiday favorites. But are consoles now for the birds? Nope, 2011 will NOT be the year Cloud Gaming dampens console sales.
  • This year few would be surprised to see iPads under the Christmas trees of the well-heeled. But PC vendors won't challenge Apple's early leadership in media tablets.
  • In 2011, netbooks are expected to remain more popular than media tablets. But demand for devices with embedded mobile broadband modems will NOT overtake demand for external modems.
  • The holidays sound like a good time to set up that long-planned home media network. But interoperability issues will be around for a while.

The holidays will be over all too soon, and the “real world” will intrude again. What else won't happen in 2011?
  • The carrier community will not handle the traffic explosion!
  • Femtocell offload will NOT be the solution of choice for countering this data tsunami.
  • LTE consumer femtocells are unlikely to be deployed in 2011.
  • The Wholesale Applications Community will not go anywhere fast.
  • BlackBerry will NOT be eclipsed by enterprise iPhones.
  • Android will NOT begin to eclipse Apple in 2011.
  • Nokia will NOT collapse in a heap.
  • Smart meter rollouts will NOT lead to adoption of smart Wireless sensor network (WSN) devices connecting to the meters within the home . . . . at least not in 2011.
  • M2M markets will NOT achieve significant standardization in 2011.
  • The ITU still WON'T have the right to define 4-G in 2011.
  • LTE will NOT be massively deployed.
  • TD-LTE will NOT kill off WiMAX in 2011.
  • Huawei will NOT become the No. 1 wireless infrastructure vendor in 2011.
  • China's FTTH market will NOT be the biggest in Asia!
  • Chinese authorities will NOT be issuing 4-G licenses in 2011.
  • Carrier Ethernet for backhaul will NOT see a substantial boom in 2011, and legacy backhaul won't completely disappear.
  • RFID tagging of retail items, e-ID, and contactless smart card programs will NOT be challenged by “mounting” privacy and security concerns.
  • Google TV is NOT dead on arrival, and yes, it will live past 2011.
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