Smartphones Will be History Within 5 Years: ConsumerLab Study

by Shikhar Srivastava 1,229 views0


A study conducted by Ericsson owned ConsumerLab has found that one in two consumers believe that smartphones will be dead soon. How soon? People believe this will happen within the next 5 years.

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To some of us this may seem absurd but then absurdity is always a welcome noun in the world of technology. The study was conducted across 40 countries and surveyed 100,000 people. While some would argue that the opinions of 100,000 people cannot be considered a large enough sample size for an industry that is many times larger, there is no arguing with the fact that there are various existing technologies which can replace many functions that a smartphone performs.

As The Sydney Morning Herald correctly points out, the ConsumerLab study covers only about 0.0052% of the global smartphone consumer base. But instead of being overtly skeptical let’s assess the absurd possibility that smartphones will be history within 5 years.

Artificial Intelligence

The ConsumerLab study hints that artificial intelligence will contribute a great deal to the demise of the smartphone. Is that likely within half a decade? No. Is that possible in the long run? Absolutely. Even though the study fails to point out how exactly AI will overtake smartphones, we know that in the realm of AI, interaction with objects is not restricted to a screen. So there is every chance that AI interaction may replace screen interaction eliminating the need for a limited interaction scope.

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This is precisely the reason why some folks believe AI can replace parts of the smartphone experience. A screen has always been ubiquitous to a mobile device and to break away from the screen experience would be a major shift in how people interact with objects.

Wearable technology

Wearables have been around forever but the recent rise in consumer wearable products, such as the smartwatch, and the willingness of top technology companies to experiment with wearable consumer products has given the industry a new found impetus.

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Wearable technology, more specifically the smartwatch, has already started gaining traction. However, most smartwatches and smartbands still have a certain dependence on the smartphone. Only when software improves enough to allow a wearable product to be independent of the smartphone can we expect to see disruptive new changes and wide-scale adoption of smartwatches. But this certainly contributes to consumer perception that smartphones can be over and done with in a few years.

Internet of Things

The Internet has started infiltrating our day to day lives. It is no longer just a means of communication or consuming information through a desktop or a laptop device. In fact the Internet has now become synonymous with consumer electronics. Consumer electronics in turn have grown far beyond just being smartphones and Tablets. IoT powers home automation, which is a booming industry. Advanced embedded technology coupled with network connectivity has led to the birth of what is currently being perceived as the next big industry.

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Much like any technology that is on an upsurge IoT has its detractors, but it also has just as many, if not more, takers. The proliferation of IoT will almost inevitably lead to birth of devices that can communicate with each and allows us to communicate with each other and consume and share information without needing to carry a 5 inch metallic box in our pockets at all times.

Virtual Reality

Most of these technologies complement each other but some are more standalone than others. VR is another technology which seems to have been around forever but has only recently started gaining some consumer market traction. With the advent of the Oculus Rift, Leap Motion, Microsoft HoloLens, et cetera, VR certainly has a lot to offer in the future.

More from iSpyPrice: Virtual Reality isn’t likely to disrupt the smartphone space in the immediate future so place your bets on a smartphone from this Gionee Mobile Price List

VR, along with Augmented Reality and Mediated Reality, is another technology that when coupled with AI can be used for creating entirely new kinds of interactions. The ability to interact with an object in thin air certainly has a lot more appeal than having to do that with small screens. Depending on how well VR companies do in the next decade we will likely see a lot of interaction currently only possible on a smartphone moving to virtual environments.

The ConsumerLab study may or may not give an accurate picture about the fate of smartphones in 5 years but there is no doubt that smartphones will eventually evolve into dumber companions of smarter interactive devices and environments as time progresses.

Check out this brilliant video where Adam Savage’s Tested puts the Samsung Gear VR to test for game demos on the Samsung Galaxy S6 mobile.

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