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Is 2012 the year the Smartphone Paradigm Turns on its Head?

Is 2012 the year the Smartphone Paradigm Turns on its Head?

Smartphone Paradigm disrupted?

If you follow the market analysts in the field of Smartphone Research and Development then one of two things is going on right now; analysts are either seeing a drastic change to the existing smartphone paradigm of who is making new Smartphones or these guys have been imbibing some very interesting stuff.

Breaking Rumors and Old News.

Until now we have had the big OS / Ecosystem players selling their phones: –

However recent rumors indicate several cases of a new trend:

  • Codename Buffy: Facebook and HTC have formed a partnership to develop a Facebook Smartphone intended to be as it’s codenamed “A Slayer”. The potential market attraction to fans of the show and of course the colossal demographic that is Facebook users lends itself to this.

    FB-logo

  • Kindle Phone: Citigroup analysts were quoted only this week across the web as anticipating Amazon releasing a Kindle Smartphone during 2012. The expectation is  that this phone like the Kindle will be sold under cost with the phone providing a platform for ROI using the Amazon ecosystem.

kindlephoneamazon-logo

Sheer Speculation and Tongue in Cheek.

Are competing platforms to Facebook going to sit still and watch while The Buffy slays the competition? Probably not. So the question is;

Are Twitter and Linked In quietly developing their own Smartphones?

  • The Twitter Phone: Codename Get ShortyIf Twitter sticks to their 140 characters what will that do to a Twitter Smartphone? SMS gone and replaced with Twitter DM or Tweeps as your Contact Book. Perhaps Voicemail will be as short and sweet as a tweet.

twitter-logo

  • The Foursquare Phone: Codename The Stalker – If Foursquare were to develop this Smartphone will it anticipate everyday, habitual routes based on frequent checkins (at the same coffee-shop), use NFC for checkins, offer deals based on location and or ping you when 4sq Friends are in proximity?

4sq-logo

In a nutshell.

Speculations (tongue in cheek or otherwise) aside, the Facebook-HTC Buffy is interesting for many reasons: –

  1. This turns the smartphone paradigm on its head: instead of an app on an OS (iOS, Android, Mango, Symbian etc.) we will see a Platform like Facebook defining the phone.
  2. Facebook has substantial investment from Microsoft which leads to the reasonable assumption that Buffy will be a Windows Phone, Search (Social or other) will be Bing based, photography will be one-click integrated with both Facebook photos and presumably Skydrive . Facebook’s video chat is based on Skype which coincidentally or not is now owned by Microsoft. HTC already make several Windows Phones but for this to work I guess that this phone will be aimed pricewise at the lower end of the market to allow all those younger Facebook users to get the phone.

If this shift holds true and platforms that were formerly only an app on a Smartphone define the whole ecosystem of the phone then what does the future hold for apps but more importantly what does the future hold for the consumer?

The author of this blog reminds you that this piece is speculative and somewhat tongue in cheek .. but not entirely: You heard it here first.

 
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