Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Convergence: The World In My Pocket

Ultimate convergence
Last night before going to bed I pulled out the contents of my pockets and laid them on my dresser. Splayed out before me were $1.47 in change, my 4Runner keys with the cigar punch key ring, a crinkled parking receipt, a worn black leather wallet, a mobile phone, my business card holder, and one wadded up ten dollar bill that my wife missed in the wash -Ha! it's still mine! Then my adult ADHD (my poor excuse for lack of focus at times) kicked in or  the after effects of the double shot of espresso I had after dinner but I suddenly had this urge to organize my laptop bag. 

What a difference between my bag and my pockets. I own a 17" laptop so my bag is fairly large. Yes, I know- I'm insane. Inside my bag were my HP laptop, it's charger, a wireless mouse, various cables and wires, my spare mobile phone charger, a yellow notepad, several copies of my business cards, various papers and receipts, several ink pens- two of which didn't work, my emergency parking meter money, two pairs of knot cuff links,  and my ScanSnap portable scanner and all it's accompanying wires. Who needs the gym after schlepping this bag around. Not much to organize since all this stuff was in their individual pouches, pockets or divider. However it was a great exercise in understanding one dilemma of modern day technology; convergence.

Recently I watched a YouTube video of Stephen Dewitt, a SVP at Hewlett-Packard, discuss his theory of convergence. His theory was that technology does not converge except if it fits in your pocket or the "pocket theory". "How true", I thought, "the world will all be in my pocket."

Today as I'm writing this article I agree that the one piece of equipment that encourages convergence is the mobile phone. Ten years ago we would of laughed if we were told your cell phone would also be a camera and your "Walk-Man." Soon even my wallet will be replaced. NFC (near field communications) is around the corner to replace debit cards or cash transactions. Even a digital driver's licenses is not inconceivable. Currently all my rewards cards reside in an app on my mobile; Key Ring, great app by the way. Half the stuff in my pockets could be digitized in some fashion in my mobile with apps Evernote or Expensify. Even the company I work at, The MobiSolution, created a digital business card called MobiCard to replace paper business cards. Leaving only my keys. I can imagine a remote bio-metric key system for vehicles to be downloaded on your phone not too far off.  Just think,  before my kids graduate high school I will only have two things in my pockets my mobile phone and my cigar lighter with built in cigar punch. Even the lighters are converged. Plus no more cash to lose to my wife in the laundry.  

Our next digital frontier is the mobile phone and mobile internet. All converged in to one device. The only downside is then I might have to join the gym because I'll have little need to schlep my seventeen pound bag around.


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