Gartner: Top 10 technologies coming to smartphones starting this year

In a statement, Roberta Cozza, research director at Gartner, has shared her views on the top 10 smartphone technologies and capabilities that will soon create more compelling experiences for the user, and unravel new business models for mobile device vendors.

Gartner’s top 10 technologies and capabilities for 2016 and 2017 are:

• Fast charging
• Wireless charging
• Augmented and virtual reality
• Multiple-lens camera solutions
• Sensors: Biometric authentication and technologies
• Virtual personal assistants (VPAs)
• Flexible/curved displays
• Wi-Fi 802.11 standards
• USB Type-C
• Embedded SIM (e-SIM)

Cozza says these ten features were selected by looking at five main potential areas of impact: the battery, an immersive experience, a personalized experience, display technology and connectivity. They represent areas that can potentially address key smartphone user pain points, expand to new capabilities, unlock new business models or create more compelling experiences. They look at the smartphone no longer in isolation, but as part of a continuum of devices and within new user scenarios.

Cozza says that virtual personal assistants represent a shift in how people will interact with machines. They are available on a number of platforms, including iOS, Windows and Android devices as well as tablets, PCs, wearables, connected home hubs, and smart home speakers.

Gartner predicts that by 2020, 40 percent of mobile interaction will be facilitated by smart agents as the post-app era starts to dominate. Already, 74 percent of smartphone users currently use VPAs frequently, at least one a day (38 percent) and several times a week (36 percent).

General purpose VPAs’ experiences have been so far disappointing. Users want more proactive interaction and notifications from their VPAs that can deliver more personalized experiences. However, VPAs and their services are becoming richer – Gartner saw new smart features in Cortana at Build 2016 and recently the new Google Assistant. Apple is expected to reveal important news regarding Siri at WWDC 2016 next Monday, June 13th. This opens up new opportunities for device vendors, ecosystem owners and VPA developers to differentiate themselves by creating smarter solutions.

Concerning Biometric authentication, sophisticated smartphones expose users to richer and new experiences with their phones such as mobile payments and, increasingly, allow users to store more detailed personal data on their phones. This highlights the need for improved protection and verified access to a phone.

Beyond fingerprint, new methods of biometric authentication will be explored. Going forward, biometric authentication will force vendors to work more closely not only with biometrics technology providers, but also with biometric software developers to achieve smooth and usable solutions that can win over users in their daily use of smartphones.

Biometrics technologies are already showing benefits in enterprise pilots and deployments focused on providing enhanced identification of individuals. Device vendors will extend the use of biometrics measurements to explore other areas beyond authentication, like Emotion and mood detection, for example.

Source: Gartner, Inc.

MacDailyNews Take: Of the 10 items listed, which tops your list?

Apple reportedly planning huge upgrade for Siri – May 30, 2016
Apple acquires advanced artificial intelligence startup Perceptio – October 5, 2015
Apple buys artificial intelligence natural language start-up VocalIQ – October 2, 2015

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Readers “Fred Mertz” and “Dan K.” for the heads up.]


      1. Theorhetocally, a wireless router could emit a high frequency radio wave that was received by the device and converted to electrical resonance to charge the device. There has been a lot of work on this, and I’m not sure how far away products are that can do it.

        Induction charging is not “wireless” in the sense that you still have to set your device on top of a pad that is plugged into the wall. If you move the device off of the pad it ceases to charge. So why not just plug it in. I’m describing a system of wireless transmission.

        1. Thank you for the voice of reason. I do agree…induction is not worth much, it’s just as much a burden as plugging the phone in. You still have an external charger to carry, and you still cannot carry the phone all around when charging.

          True wireless charging would be a huge breakthrough. And imagine being able to walk into any Apple Store, Starbucks, mall, etc, and just have your battery charge. Imagine a wireless charging solution for the car.

          With true wireless charging the battery life becomes a non-issue, because it will be charging virtually all of the time.

        2. We already have wireless charging (aka solar cells) on many low power devices. Smartphones are not low power devices. Will NEVER happen. Not enough power in radio waves unless you want to become infertile at the same time your phone is charged.

          “There are physicists and then there are those that think they are smarter.” – George Pistotnik 1983

        3. The health and electronic interference effects of high intensity radio are not attractive. I do not foresee a day in the near future when Tesla coils power your portable devices. Besides, nothing is more reliable and faster for charging than a conductor (wire).

          On another note, wireless audio is also a pain in the ass. Bluetooth sucks and always will. Give me reliable physical connections and wires over any of the stupid wireless pipe dreams.

  1. I think that as long as the “VPA” stuff has speech interaction, there’ll always be errors, and people will continuously not know how to use it, making their messages and emails illegible and horrible to read. Maybe Apple will show something actually useful with Siri, like 99% accuracy when transforming speech to text, and use of the Alex voice as the Siri Male voice, which I’m surprised they don’t do already, since it’s Apple’s voice anyways.

  2. How about durability. Screens that dont scratch. Frames that dont bend. Metal that wont dent. And maybe water resistant. Quality and durability before any more tricks. Speed of sync would be nice bu since Apple wint be selling music they wont care about that user experience.

    1. If, and it’s a big if, you can get a true wireless charging solution that works, then battery life becomes a moot point. Then you have your phone charge almost all of the time: when in your car, in a mall, at an Apple Store, at Starbucks, at work, etc.

  3. All of these technologies are on Android phones already, have been for years and are already in daily use by tens of millions to hundreds of millions (depending on the feature) of users with tons of supporting apps and accessories. What is this “analyst” talking about? And what will be the next “prediction” … about how these newfangled color picture tubes are going to be all the rage in 10 years, along with horseless carriages and bell bottoms pants?

    1. Ya sure.
      Androids has had flexible displays and USB-C for years now!
      Mainstream Android phone with Wi-Fi 802.11 everywhere for years…

      Wow, what a no life troll

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