3 Technologies of 2010 that will impact 2011
As I sit to write this on New Years Eve and look back on 2010, I can hardly believe how fast it has passed! It seems like just recently that I returned from my tour of duty in Iraq (Aug 2008 – Sept 2009) in support of OIF.
As I came home, I found my passion for all things technology still as strong as ever, especially when it comes to the technology we have surrounding us in our homes. To me, Home Technology takes on a completely personal meaning. This is due, in part, to the fact that when it comes to implementing the technology we choose to surround ourselves with at home, each implementation becomes the personal creation of an environment that matches our needs, wants, and personality!
Over the past year, we’ve seen some really amazing advances in technology, as well as a number of notable new innovations that are really starting to bring the spotlight into the Home. This is important because the more people start to pay attention to the new growth an innovations in this niche, the faster the momentum will continue to pick up. This, in turn, means that companies will realize the huge market potential of the Home User and begin to focus more and more attention to the home technology market. With that focus comes even more innovation!
2010 saw the introduction of some amazing advancements in the Home Tech industry. Here are 3 technologies that I feel made a significant impact on our lives in 2010 that will continue to be refined in 2011:
While many people are still on the fence about whether 3D television is going to stick or not, there is a small percentage of the population that believes it is just a fad. However, it really seems that manufacturers are viewing these new advancements as viable because all of the major TV manufacturers have jumped into the game. Hopefully this time it will stick because it’s always been my opinion that if implementing 3D technology in a TV set is as easy and inexpensive as it apparently is, they why wouldn’t you want the capability of watching a movie in 3D if you had the chance? I am hoping that as TV manufacturers continue to work with & improve 3D technology and as the movie studios keep producing quality 3D titles, that 3D TVs become the norm in 2011!
Yes, I really do think Google TV is one of the innovative products of 2010! Do I think that it needs some work? Yes, but the concept of what Google implemented is actually quite different than any of the other Streaming Media devices out there while sharing the same media playback capabilities. By inserting itself between your TV signal and the TV, Google created an “overlay” that you can call up at any time while watching TV. From this interface, a multitude of options for streaming content await you.
As I mentioned, I don’t believe that Google TV was ready for primetime when it was released, but at the same time, I agree with Google deciding to release it. The release served to test the waters to see how the General Public dealt with concepts like having a keyboard in the living room as well as interacting with their TV in a new way.
I feel that Google TV will be a technology to keep a very close eye on in this next year. With the impending release of Honeycomb, the next iteration of the Android Operating System, I anticipate that Google will not only be addressing cries from the public to produce a version of Android designed for tablets, but that Honeycomb will also apply a much needed facelift to Google TV. Once the SDK is release for Google TV and the Google Marketplace opens up, then I see Google TV really taking off!
Xbox 360 Kinect
The vast majority of people out there probably have no clue that the Kinect, a motion and sound sensing game controller sold for Microsoft’s Xbox 360, has a bright future outside the game console realm! With Microsoft’s release of the SDK for the Kinect, some very visionary types have gone and started creating applications for the Kinect that will allow you to interact with your TV and HTPC (Home Theater PC) by using hand gestures.
While this is one of the most recent technologies to break into the Home Technology field, it certainly is very exciting to think of a future where we can interact with our homes via voice command and hand gestures. Imagine turning down the lights or closing the blinds simply by gesturing with your hand!
It will be very interesting to see where people take the Kinect when implementing it for the purpose of home system integration!
Looking toward the Future
It is easy to see that these three technologies alone have not only had a huge impact on our worlds at home over the past year, but also seem to have great things in store for them in the upcoming year as people explore the different possibilities with each.
Could 2011 turn out to be there year that Home Technology really comes into it’s own? Well, the extent at which the previous statement becomes true depends greatly on everyone’s attitudes towards innovation…
I believe that if we take the approach of embracing new technologies, even if they are released only to find that there are still some kinks to work out, we will not end up risking the possibility of stifling innovation! Google TV is a prime example of this as many of the more established bloggers had no mercy when reviewing the devices running Google TV or even just the concept of interacting with your TV via a keyboard in your living room!
For us to keep moving forward, especially if we want to increase the rate of innovation in this very exciting field, I feel that we should take a more positive approach as new technological innovations are released! Instead of focusing on minor bugs and interface issues, let’s recognize true innovation for what it is: advancement! Innovation does one thing very well, it sparks innovation in competing companies. So unless someone produces a device or technology that is truly garbage, let’s try to focus on growth in our industry!
If we approach advancement and innovation in this manner, I know that 2011 will be an even bigger year for Home System Integration than 2010 was. This is the time to raise public awareness about all of the cool technologies that are already available to implement within the home and look forward to a future where the connected home is the norm rather than a hobby for early-adaptors!
Wishing you all the best in 2011! May you and your families be blessed and may there be peace!
[New Years graphic via king-style.net]