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Thoughts for 2013: more cloud, more apps

It takes some courage to dig up your last year’s column to see which predictions one got right and which one did not, N Madhavan writes.

gadgets Updated: Dec 23, 2012 23:18 IST
N Madhavan

It takes some courage to dig up your last year’s column to see which predictions one got right and which one did not. But here I am. I had kind of “recommended” five tech things that one could do to go beyond gadgets into the new digital experience. Let me see which ones really caught on.

I had asked tech users to focus more on apps (applications), try to get better data plans for Internet usage rather than waste money on unnecessary physical gadgets, go for Internet-based “cloud storage” and form offline communities based on online groups.

And then I had batted for smart TVs that enable you to view Internet content on TV.

Looking back, I feel cloud storage and apps are indeed taking off, with Google, Microsoft (Outlook) and Apple promoting both.

But smart TVs are not hot. They are being sold, but have not been the buzz this festive season like I had expected, perhaps because of an economic slowdown. In hindsight, I think smart TVs need easier prices and better keyboard/remote integration for search before people find them hot.

This week’s protests at India Gate following a rape in Delhi, and loads of music/art events I see listed on Facebook show that offline gatherings based on online connections and coordination are becoming normal.

Overall, I got some things right and some not, but it reminded me of a saying that when a new technology arrives, its pace is overestimated and the magnitude is underestimated. So I expect the same trends I kind of wished for or hinted at to catch fire in 2013.