Wednesday, May 31, 2006


The conventional wisdom (always suspect) is that portable devices will converge on a single platform. In the future we will each carry a single device that is a phone, clock, radio, camera, media player, media recorder, messenger and provide all the functions of a PDA including calendaring, reminding and note taking. This is called convergence.

Well as the song goes "it ain't necessarily so". I have written about this before, however I got to thinking about this again when I wanted another track on my iPod. I use the iPod Shuffle to listen to podcasts. Sometimes, I would like to have a second music track for when I want to concentrate and need background music to drown out distracting sounds. Time to trade up to a more sophisticated iPod? Well the alternative is just buy another iPod Shuffle, after all they are cheap enough and I can have one Shuffle with podcasts and one Shuffle with a music mix.

The point is, the devices are so cheap that there is no need to have one converged device. In fact you may be better off with several best-of-breed devices rather than one mediocre do-it-all device. Hence divergence. In fact convergence may be the new disintermediation.


The Editor said...

Digital Divergence is an idea whose time has come. See my blog entry aboit it.

Unknown said...

Convergence, makes life easier for anyone and everyone. Just how the sophistication of devices go and how far the research in this are go is merely a matter of time. I use my Treo for music, web, email, doucments, e-reader, tasks, calendar, file sharing, and camera. I still feel challenged with the speed of the processor and multi-tasking of various items, cause the technology is still being worked on and is only couple of decades old, with most of the development happened in past decade or so. So I'd say we'll see more and more advances in the coming decades. And convergence won't only be a word but a part of everyday life and beyond.