Monday, September 15, 2008

Final Project Innovation Prediction Stage 2

Final Project Innovation Prediction Stage 2

The convergence of the Laptop and the Cell Phone


The availability of information and the quest to understand the evolution of technology and its use can be seen as some of the drivers that experts and others use to gauge where the future of technology will be in the years ahead. To the layman this is called a prediction. Several other terminologies that are used to understand the evolution of technology relative to predictions. Determinism, forecasts, theories and others are some of the popular terminologies that are used to describe the intricacies of predictions (Sherden, 1998).

Nonetheless, the desire to know more and to compete in the current global economy fans the flames of predictions (Sherden, 1998). While experts and others make predictions on a daily basis, they do not always come through, nor do they all fail (Leigh & Wolfers, 2007). Although it is sometimes difficult to understand the true rational that drives one to predict, predictions are made daily and will continue to be made (Sherden, 1998).

Synopsis of the Computing Evolution

The history of modern computers might be traceable to the inception and gains from the strides (advancement) made from LEDs, programming, operating systems, applications, circuit and circuit boards, transistors, storage devices, input and output devices, memory and other components (Bellis, n.d). Undoubtedly, the demands for micro and mini computers have helped to pave the way for new generations of computing devices.

Laptops, and other handheld devices have benefited from the evolution of larger computing devices. In addition, the advent of wireless handheld devices provides instant communications with other systems, have become popular. Thus, it not uncommon to see a telecommuter, or a student with a laptop connected to a wireless handheld device to access the Internet. Usually these connections are either done with a cord, a PCMCIA or a USB card attached to the laptop. Figure 1. Shows the un-converged devices used to make calls using a cell phone

Nonetheless, the speed and convenience that users obtain from these connections are impressive. Moreover, the user usually sacrifices the use of their cell phone to go online. Thus, the cell phone will not available for accepting or placing calls while it is connected to the laptop. The ubiquity of laptops has come a long way. They have gotten smaller, faster, lighter, cheaper and vendors are constantly pushing the envelope to launch new and exciting products to enhance the user experience. In the recent past, we have seen laptops that come with Wireless Local Area Networks (WLAN) cards and Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access (WIMAX) technology is lurking the horizons. Figure 2. Shows the projected growth for wireless communications.


While cell phones can be used via a specialized cord to enable the same functionalities as modems to facilitate broadband connectivity, the author predicts that the new frontier of convergence will foster laptops that have a built-in docking station for cell phones. The cell phone will sit on (in) a docking interface on the laptop. It will allow the cell phone to charge, accept calls and enable broadband connectivity wirelessly to the laptop simultaneously. Fourth-generation (4G) wireless communications may be required to make sure that end-to-end connectivity receives the quality of service (QoS) necessary to enhance the end-user experience. Third Generation (3G) wireless technologies are here but they are not mature. 4G is expected to enable enhance use of the existing 3G technologies such as WiMAX and WiFi.

For instance, while the phone is docked on (in) the laptop, a few mouse clicks can be made to specialized software on the laptop to engage the phone to connect to the Internet. Through multiplexing, compression and other 3G/4G technologies, the broadband capabilities will enable calls to be received via the blue tooth port on the phone, laptop or the speakers (speakerphone) on the laptop. This capability (convergence) can also enable video conferencing for telemedicine (Halal, 2008).

With new and emerging technologies going to market on a daily basis, products that are untested along with poor design practices can impede the adoption of new tools, services and devices. Furthermore, even though when industry best practices are used, hackers and others may find ways to circumvent secured WLANs.

Moreover, when systems updates, monitoring and other best practices are employed, WLANs spectrum can offer security that is comparable to wired LANs. DeBeasi (2008) explained in Figure 4. one of the approaches used to secure wireless communications. This security approach uses strong authentication, public key infrastructure and encryption to protect WIMAX infrastructures.


Bellis, M. (n.d). The Histories of Computers. Retrieved on September 08, 2008 from

Enriquez, J. (2001). As The Future Catches You. Three Rivers Press.

Halal, W. E. (2008). Technology’s Promises. Palgrave MacMillan

Leigh, A. & Wolfers, J. (2007). Prediction markets for business and public policy.

The Melborne Review. Retrieved from on 09/5/2008:

Krishnamoorthy, A. V., Zheng, X., Cunningham, J.E., Lexau, J., Ho, R., &

Torudbakken, O. (2008). Optical Interconnects for Present and Future High-Performance

Computing Systems.16th IEEE Symposium on High Performance Interconnects.

Sherden, W. A. (1998). The fortunes Sellers.

Van Lent, M. (2008). The Future is virtually Here. Entertainment computing. IEEE.

DeBeasi, P. (2008). WIMAX Tutoral. Retrieved on September 08, 2008 from


1 comment:

John said...


When I travel, I sometimes need to connect to the web in spots where there is no WI-FI. I'm able to use my laptop tethered to my Blackberry (runs on the EDGE network). Here is the link if you want to check it out Basically, it gives me reasonable ~256Kbps internet speed for about $15.00 a month.