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Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Rethinking PCs and smartphones in a Pandemic World

Mobility and more, powerful tools and some loss of privacy.     Other implications for their use.

Rethinking PCs and smartphones in a post-COVID-19 world in Computerworld

We are still early into the COVID-19 disruption, but I have little doubt the world will be dramatically changed as a result. The tech hardware world that will exist post-pandemic will have a lot to do with what emerges at Blackberry, Cisco, HP, and IBM.
Personal technology started with terminals, typewriters and wired analog phones. Security was a simple concern, mobility was something out of science fiction, and we pretty much leased everything. Put  differently, everything was a service. From the 1960s until now, we have been trying – largely unsuccessfully – to get back to that simpler time when we didn’t have to be a technician, things just worked, and we could focus more on our businesses, less on and keeping technology running. 

[ Further reading: How AR and VR will change enterprise mobility ]

As the world moved from mainframes to PCs, from wired phones to smartphones, and as we layered on complexity, we often lost focus on what was important. For instance, 50-plus years ago our biggest driving concern was grandparents – who liked to look at us in the back seat while they drove – and drunk drivers. Now, we fear death from the person one car over looking at a smartphone, not the road.

We spend time now with our faces buried in screens: big screens, movie screens, small screens – especially now. The COVID-19 event, and we are only coming to the end of the beginning, is likely to be with us for at least a year longer, and it is already changing priorities. We are more concerned about people around us; we need to engage from a distance because we are working remotely. We aren’t traveling or going out, so sharing everything we do on Social Media isn’t as interesting. And we look longingly at movies, TV, and pictures of a world that once was. ... 

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