Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Digital Prognostications for 2008

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Now that another year is here, what will the quickly evolving world of technology bring in 2008? Here's my attempt to gaze into the crystal ball and this is my theories of the trends in technology seen in the year to come.

1. Bands leave recording companies to distribute direct to fans

This past fall's experiment by the band Radiohead to let fans download their latest album and pay what ever they want shows that many bands hate the recording industry just as much as the fans to. There is an endless trail of bands and solo artists who may have a cult following who have been dropped by record labels due to poor sales. Even artists who sell well have at times have had tumultuous dealings with their labels. Now that online music stores like iTunes, Napster, Rhapsody now are available to use pretty much around the world. 2008 will be the year the year that artists that have been dropped or in dispute with their labels will make deals with the online music stores and sell tracks direct to the consumer.

2. WiMax deployment begins, Municipal WiFi dies a quiet death

WiMax a technology to delivery broadband wirelessly has been slow to get off the ground due to unavailability of radio frequency spectrum. With the FCC mandated abandonment of analog television broadcasting now on the horizon, the needed spectrum will be available very soon. Potential service providers are already getting ready to buy in. WiMax will finally provide those in areas underserved telcos and cable companies with a way to get high speed Internet. Small towns in these underserved areas are where the first Municipal WiFi projects started but projects in major cities have only been nothing more than taxpayer funded failures, City halls will have to start pulling the plugs soon with WiMax companies providing some much needed competition for the telcos and cable companies in well served urban areas.

3. Adoption of Windows Vista continues to flounder even after Service Pack 1 drops

It's little secret that a lot of people just have no interest in Windows Vista including a lot of corporate IT departments. Many people and companies simply state that Windows XP works just fine. Many also say that incompatible hardware and software are another reason for avoiding Windows Vista. To address many of the problems with Windows Vista Microsoft is planning to release the first service pack for Windows Vista in the first quarter of 2008. With computers getting faster and better in the past couple of years many people simply have no reason to upgrade their operating system or their entire computer. Microsoft needed a killer app to sell Windows Vista and they simply haven't found it, even with service pack 1 coming the killer app simply isn't there.

4. Dot-com bubble II

The stock price of Google has soared in the few years that it's been trading on the stock market. Social networking web sites are seen as the highly financed by venture capitalists that will be next to see IPO's that will launch the next generation Dot-com boom. While social networking web sites will provide opportunities to show people advertising customized previously unseen in any other web sites. It's still a business model where advertising is the sole source of revenue. It's not exactly a firm foundation worth investing in but hype will dominate and shares will be snapped up.

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