They’ve come a long way in their relatively short history, but what does the near future of smart phones – 2021 look like?
Whether we need to check the weather forecast, instantly message networks of family, friends and followers on social media, consult a variety of apps to help us with our business, or just entertain ourselves with our favorite games, music or videos, it’s fair to say that we all rely on our smartphones to come to our aid at the swipe of a touchscreen. So, will the future of smart phones – 2021 bring more of the same, or can we expect radical advances?
What Should We Expect from Near Future Cell Phone Technology?
Consumer demand dictates the speed of change. Future cell phone technology will have to reflect and keep up with an increasingly Internet-dependent world, as well as cope with shifting work trends. As such, faster wireless connectivity will be an absolute must.
The questions we need to address, however, when looking at the future of smartphones are complex, yet exciting. What will the future of cellular technology bring? How will future cell phones attract the interest of a new tech-savvy generation? Will smartphones become obsolete? In short, what can we expect from the future of cell phones and, in particular, the future of smart phones – 2021?
There are two ways in which we can predict future cell phone technology. First, by identifying current trends in the market and the demands of the consumer. Secondly, by studying new innovation, notably the impact and emergence of 5G, which was set to be the future of cell phone technology 2020, and will continue to determine the overall future of smart phones – 2021.
Future of Smart Phones – 2021: Trends and Demands
Videoconferencing, digital collaboration and telecommuting have become central to our everyday working life, bringing with them a vital need for reliable connectivity and greater bandwidth. We cannot afford to be disconnected, and, as we continue to combine domestic and business activities, the future cell phone technology must incorporate hardware to fully support 5G. For example, the future of smart phones – 2021 revolves around being able to easily sync home and office experiences, instantly stream video content and unlock the potential of future smart technologies as the Internet of Things dictates. Mobile networks are changing with 5G.
Stretchable Screens and Foldable Phones
Flexible, stretchable display screens are likely to play a role in the future of cell phone technology. While consumers love larger screens, tablets are bulky, and for the sake of convenience, mobile phones need to fit into pockets. Foldable phones may to some extent fulfil this need, but the future of smartphones – 2021 is likely to include a greater range of larger yet thinner stretchable and foldable screens on offer. Similar to how an elastic band stretches to increase its length, the future of cell phone technology is for screens to extend from perhaps 6 inches to 7.2 without affecting the quality of display through screen distortion, and for more phones to be foldable.
Mobile phone companies have hinted at a wearable future of smartphones – perhaps wrapped around the wrist, or transformed into a GPS-enabled belt clip, or as a pair of glasses (rumors have been increasingly circulating about the release of the Apple Glass, which may or may not fare better than the Google Glass, which ultimately failed a few years ago). Devices, indeed, could soon be totally reshaped according to individual needs. However, whilst the concept of flexible phones has been demonstrated at trade shows and exhibitions, manufacturers have been slow to bring wearable phones to market, suggesting that the future of smart phones – 2021 may not include phones as wearables.
Banking and Payments and Their Impact on the Future of Smartphones – 2021
Increased uptake of mobile apps related to banking, retail and general commercial functions suggests that the future for cell phone technology lies in a greater adoption of mobile payment technologies, which effectively transform smartphones into credit card and contactless payment devices. It’s likely that the future of cell phone technology will double up as a means of authenticating identities through a combination of unique identifiers – for example, GPS technology, biometrics, etc.
The future of smart phones – 2021 will also continue to contribute more and more to the complete transformation of both traditional and online banking procedures. With the capacity to capture screenshots of checks through banking mobile apps, for example, or apps that enable near real-time card-to-card money transfers, smartphones will continue to automate traditional banking tasks and will play a huge part in the continuing shift to online banking.
Has Smartphone Technology Reached Its Peak?
Is there a limit to the capabilities of smartphones? Indeed, will smartphones become obsolete? Features such as camera resolution may become sharper. Shapes, dimensions and designs change to encourage customers to upgrade models. But, if there’s no longer a marked difference in new features, where does that leave the future of smart phones?
Disruptive technology will continue to shape the market as manufacturers constantly seek innovative ways to attract a more discerning clientele. Whilst it is fair to predict that artificial intelligence in the form of smart devices such as Alexa, Echo and Siri will play a major role in future home technology, such is our reliance on (some would call it an addiction to) our smartphones, it’s also fair to say that the day when these devices become obsolete (if it ever happens) is beyond sight at present.
The smartphone means different things to different people, but it is an indispensable part of most people’s lives – so it may not change dramatically over the next few years. People love handheld devices. They love to while away time playing games, listening to music or videos while travelling, the instant communication they bring via messaging apps and social media. They love having a powerful portable computer in their pocket providing instant answers to issues as they arise. Smartphones meet consumer needs in so many ways – it’s difficult to see a future without them.
It can be argued that traditional smartphone design has reached its limit – hence the emergence of foldable phones and expandable screens. The long-term future of cellular and mobile technology may well be wearable, but, shorter-term, the future of smart phones – 2021 will be increasingly intertwined with the Internet of Things, 5G-enabled, and supporting ever-more sophisticated apps to handle more and more of our payments and finances.