In just a week I'll be jetting off to Barcelona, to bring you all the latest phone launch excitement at this year's 3GSM conference. And what a great opportunity to pre-empt the event, only to be crushed when none of my predictions come true. We'll call it Prediction Bingo.
So, this year, I'm expecting phones to be...
...Cheaper. We've seen an increase in the number of handset and network operators open to VoIP and applications like Skype, notably from 3's X-Series. So, expect more of this, with operators finally coming to the conclusion that services like this are not going to go away, and we're not going to pay hand over fist for their precious mobile minutes.
...Touchier. This doesn't mean that they're all going to be sensitive little flowers, but that we will see more interesting ways of using our phones. Apple have already announced that the iPhone will have a touch screen, as will the new LG Prada phone. And Samsung have given details about their vibrating screen. So, hopefully there will be lots of things for us to quite literally get our sticky fingers on.
...Thinner. The Size 0 debate rumbles on on other Shiny sites, and we've got our own version over here. It may not be Dior, but we like it... The number to beat is 6.9 - the number of millimetres thick the thinnest phone around is, by Samsung. I'll be spending time trying to snap the contenders in half, making myself eternally popular with those spokespeople hanging around the stand.
**... Smarter. ** It's not enough that your phone makes and takes calls (it hasn't been for a while now, not sure if you noticed) it's got to be able to enrich your life in ever more imaginative ways. Expect lots of talk about in-built GPS (you're no one if you're lost), health monitoring tools and ever increasing gadgets and gizmos.
...Prettier Yay! They get it! Girls buy phones, and girls like things that look good and work well. And not in a pink way. The LG Chocolate set the bar last year, and those same guys are hoping that the Shine is going to do the same thing this year. But are there other contenders? I'll be carrying around my trusty video camera, to share with you the prettiest of the pretty.
There'll be live blogging on Monday and Tuesday next week, so check back to get all the latest stuff.
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