convergence devices sucks

Been out on the whole saturday afternoon with Ice at robs, there's this new techie boutique from Pos Marketing. My nokia 6100 phone has been dead after countless flights from my PC table to my floor, so I have been window-shopping for phones lately. We chanced upon this sleek orange sony-ericsson walkman phone on the display. mp3 phone with cam. interesting. convergence device. a do-it-all phone. but i have my ipod. my sister's gonna send me an ixus this year. sure it looks up-to-date. people at la salle's gonna stare at me when im fiddling with this gadget. but why bother?

there's been talk of it for years, now - interactive televisions, fridges with internet access, wrist watch PDAs - combining features from multiple services in one device. but the basic problem with convergence is that it is a compromise: you end up with something which does all of the things it is supposed to do, but it does them all less well than a discrete device would.

if you join together a phone, a PDA and an MP3 player you end up with something which does none of these things well: you have a thing which is too big to be a cool phone, too small to be an effective PDA, has too many buttons to be a usable MP3 player, and has too short a battery life to be used for long as any of these things.

it's like a multi-tool or pen knife with too many tools in it: the knife blade is too short to be useful, the scissors are too fiddly to cut for long, and the screwdrivers can't be used for any screw which has been screwed in properly because there's no leverage and the neck keeps bending. Yes, these tools are useful in an emergency, but for day to day use you need an actual toolkit.

the convergence devices are not intended as emergency items, but the features incorporated are just as stunted as the novelty saw in a multi-blade pen knife.

i can't help but think about those huge bloated applicatoin suites that contain more features than anyone can ever use but which run like a long swim in molasses because all of the unwanted feature code gets in the way of the stuff you actually need. my preference is for much smaller programs which plug together any way you want; they all work well on their own, and none of them get in the way of the others.

is there a way around this, to make convergence devices actually usable for all of their features?

i don't know, but until portable power and UI technologies improve to a point where a convergence device isn't just the worst features of all the things it's trying to be, I will be keeping my devices separate.

im bringing my busted unit to C2K. I will add kapatid's 2nd album into my ipod through iTunes. I will wait for the digicam package from abroad.

im keeping my PhP18,000 in the bank instead.


Jaypee said...

boss! long time no hear. may ara ka pa gali blog wala gid ko kabalo. pano mo nakita ang akon blog? sa page ni boris? anyways, thanx for droppin by. add taka sa blogroll ko ha? later! :)

teodz said...

yup. sa kay bon. hehe musta na?