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Future(?) Design of Mobile Phones 162

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the well-ok-not-quite dept.
Sad Loser writes "The future of the mobile phone is here, or at least a bunch of Nokia-sponsored industrial design students' take on the problem. The BBC also has more pictures." Most of these designs are quite silly (a necklace with squeezable beads for an address book?) but at least amusing.
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Future(?) Design of Mobile Phones

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  • 2015? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by tygerstripes (832644) on Wednesday June 14, 2006 @08:47AM (#15531693)
    TFA suggests that these phone designs are concepts that may be workable by 2015.

    2015? As in, nearly ten years from now? Nobody seriously expects phones to be recognisably unique devices by then, do they? It's nigh-on impossible to buy a mobile phone these days that does not incorporate, to a significant degree, functions for which there are already devices available.

    It's widely accepted in the industry that within 10 years', when cameras, mp3 players and all sorts of other gadgets are sufficiently advanced and shrunk, everyone will be toting Multi-Function-Devices such that calling it a "phone" would be like calling a laptop an "electronic typewriter".

    Now, those of us who are of a practical or ludditish bent will say that we prefer our devices to be discrete (as in separate) so that we don't have to upgrade everything at once and can stick with what we like. Personally, I'd like to see a move towards modular technology with standard interfaces - you buy your basic model, and detach/reattach parts as they become more advance and cheaper, so you swap out your 2M camera module for a 10M SLR, or a gaming processor unit, or whatever. However, it's not likely to happen as it means phone manufacturers have a smaller turnover, smaller businesses can get a better foothold, and service providers can't tie you into replacement schemes with the contract.

    Still, a guy can dream.

  • I wish... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by truthsearch (249536) on Wednesday June 14, 2006 @08:48AM (#15531698) Homepage Journal
    I wish the future of cell phones was more like the past, just smaller. You know, a phone that's just a phone but fits in my pocket comfortably. Why do they make me feel like I'm asking for too much?
  • personally... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Churla (936633) on Wednesday June 14, 2006 @08:52AM (#15531729)
    Things I would want from a mobile device:

    1) Phone
    2) PDA
    3) MP3 player
    4) Camera

    Things I DON'T want in a mobile device:

    1) Smells
    2) Life philosophy
    3) Being locked into one service provider

    It's funny how how 5 years ago my want list would have made me a cuttng edge geek, and now it makes me a luddite.
  • by rdmiller3 (29465) on Wednesday June 14, 2006 @08:55AM (#15531749) Journal

    My present mobile flips open, lets me talk speakerphone style holding it out in front of me, and I can contact whomever I want by saying their name or saying the phone number... very much like the communicators in the original Star Trek series. (I wish I could reprogram it to chirp like a 'communicator' instead of its "Say a command.")

    We've seen those Bluetooth earphone-mic sets. What about a Bluetooth speakerphone badge? The main phone would be somewhere else on your person, but the little badge could be worn closer to your head and have a simple touch-to-activate/hangup interface like in the "Next Generation" Star Trek series.

  • Silly? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by NetDanzr (619387) on Wednesday June 14, 2006 @08:58AM (#15531760)
    The beads are not silly; they are the marketer's dream! Imagine the recurring revenue the phone operators get from selling more of the beads for people who gave them all away. A phone company could also lock customers in, with using a proprietary format for these beads. It could also serve as a differentiator for companies. I wish I could come up with something like those beads, patent the idea and then develop it further for a large wireless company.
  • Re:Here we go again (Score:3, Interesting)

    by dbIII (701233) on Wednesday June 14, 2006 @09:29AM (#15531975)
    Won't it be nice to be able to ssh into your server the moment you get a warning?
    Nokia 6800 - they made thousands on the expectation that people would want a qwerty keyboard to send text messages, so I got one dirt cheap and use it for ssh. Other manufacturers are also trying the same thing and may hit the same pitfall, so you may be able to get something newer that can do the same thing dirt cheap.

    I thought the most useless feature on the thing was the radio until I took a bus to work a few times and used the radio each day. If only it could do ssh over IR (you can't get to IR with any publicly available programming methods on the thing) and it had a torch the thing would be ideal.

  • by Solo-Malee (618168) on Wednesday June 14, 2006 @09:47AM (#15532128)
    I once saw an interview with Prince Charles (about 5 years ago). He was congratulating two students on an award they received for a new design for a mobile phone. The conversation when like this...

    Prince Charles [While admiring the half brick sized phone in his hands] "Ahhem, it's really amazing how small you can make these things"..."but what's to stop you maing them even smaller?"
    Designer [While thinking what a dumb ass question that was]: "Well sir, the distance between your mouth and your ear"

    With hindsight, who's the smart one now...technnology moves ever forward, apparently there is nothing to stop things getting ever smaller except maybe cramming more and more functionaility into it, at which point, when does it stop being just a phone?
  • Re:Silly? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by sethg (15187) on Wednesday June 14, 2006 @10:16AM (#15532379) Homepage
    I can imagine the necklace-phone being a real hit with eleven-to-sixteen-year-old girls. They could compete for status based on how many beads they had on their necklaces, who they had distributed their own beads to, having the beads from the popular kids, not having beads from unpopular kids, etc.
  • crazy cell phones (Score:2, Interesting)

    by sciencecneisc (980820) on Wednesday June 14, 2006 @07:06PM (#15536448)
    more important is Apple. there's the RAZR iTunes phone but what about Apple? MacRumors.com has a page 2 link about a patent that Apple may have issued on an iPod video/iChat AV/cell phone. how will it get battery life? the batteries will shape the device.

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