1. 7" Apple iPad - I definitely think Apple will release a 7" version of the iPad this year and it will be priced competitively against the Amazon Kindle Fire. Why do I believe this? Basically there's just too much "money on the table" in the micro-tablet space. I have several Apple Fan friends who want "pads" for their kids but aren't quite willing to spend the extra money for an iPad. Apple has go after this market and protect their market share in this space. (Scoring: 20 points if correct)
Ok, I nailed this one, the iPad Mini's screen weighs in at 7.9 inches and the product is targetted at the micro-tablet place. Honestly though, I feel this was a "no-brainer" because there was no way Apple could stay out of this market...there was just too much money on the table.
Points: +20, Score: 20/20
2. Apple HDTV - Ok. I know that Apple has treated the AppleTV product as purely for hobbyists but I definitely think this is the year that Apple steps front and center and produces an AppleHDTV product. Why do I believe this? Basically, it's the timing. There are too many rumors of Apple producing an HDTV product for it not to be true. So clearly, something's cooking in the labs...it's just a question when will it be released. The market is ripe for these internet-enhanced media televisions. These products are no longer bleeding edge and I expect to see maturing 2nd generation version of these products at CES. So the time to is now. Is the AppleHDTV totally ready...hmm, I doubt it's up to their level of perfection yet. However, without Steve Jobs I don't think that they have the strength of personality to wait until the product is "just right". (Scoring: 20 points if correct)
- FMPs - If you're an Apple Fan, don't even think about purchasing a HDTV until Summer/Fall. Apple's TV plans for 2012 should be crystal clear by then. Face it, if Apple comes out with a HDTV...it'll be cool and you're gonna want one.
Ugh! No one is more disappointed than me (well, except maybe this guy) about this one. I really wanted an AppleHDTV to round out my home entertainment environment. I don't know what happened here! Apple seems poised to make a move in this market. I'm guessing the content companies are a little gun-shy and weary after seeing the impact of iTunes on the music industry. I'm still keeping the flame on for this one...maybe this year.
Points: +0, Score: 20/40
3. Micro-Social Media Exporter - What the heck is that? Ok. I just made that one up, so let me explain it. I believe we will see a rise is micro-social media sites like - Path 2, Instagram, Google+, etc. Facebook is on the road to 1 billion users and it's safe to assume they've won the social media wars for the moment (never forget myspace.com). However, as privacy concerns continue to rise and +100 friend accounts starts to get burdensome and constricting, these micro-social media sites will began to establish a foothold and become more popular. Look for the the merger of specialized micro-social media, like Instagram and Path 2.0 to grow into healthy competition for Facebook. (Scoring - 10 points for significant growth of Path 2 and Google plus, 10 points for the merger of any two or more micro-social media sites.)
Hmm, I would really like to say that I earned a few points for Facebook buying Instagram, but I guess that would not be fair. The 800 lbs gorilla acquiring the emerging micro-social site probably does not qualify as a "merger" :-(
Points: + 0, Score: 20/60
4. A Tricorder Health and Fitness App - Finally, my own personal tricorder. That's right StarTrek fans the early tricoder prototypes will be out this year...kinda. This is the year that your phone/media device will also allow you to keep close track of your personal health and fitness. The emergence of Health APIs like those available in Runkeeper, Nike+ and Fitbit will facilitate this trend. Developers will began to utilize these APIs to add a significant level of tricoder "goodness" to your phone. They may even go as far as allowing you to tie it in with your medical records. 10 points for significant growth, 5 points if someone really relates their product to a tricorder.
- FMPs - Look to purchase one of the health monitoring devices this year to help track and monitor your health and fitness..
Ok, next year I'll have to create more quantifiable goals. In any case though, as this recent article from The Economist notes...this is a hot & growing area. In fact, I bought the Wahoo BlueHR, which is a very cool heart-rate monitor with a developer API that enables other people to write applications fo the device. This is a trend that is only going to continue and get even better this year. I think I got both of these predictions right.
Points: +10, Score: 30/75
5. Window Phone FTW! - For the last year and a half, I have being saying "Google is the new Microsoft, Microsoft is the new "Black" and Apple is, of course, Apple". The new "Black"...what does that mean? Well basically that means, the sleeping behemoth that is Microsoft is awakening from its slumber...ravenous for the mobile market. This is the year the Microsoft will totally eat RIM's lunch or anyone else who is eyeing the number 3 spot for mobile phones. There is only enough room for 3 spots when it comes to mobile phone mind share. The current list - 1) iPhone, 2) Android and 3) Blackberry will be - 1) iPhone, 2) Android and 3) Windows Phone by the end of 2012. (My scoring/points system - (20 points for the Microsoft Phone be touted as one of the top 3 phones in growth and popularity by any of the top reputable trade rags.)
Honestly, I really expected a "little" more from Microsoft's Phone. I still think it's on the way to the #3 position (based on my own experience) but its going to take a little bit longer. I must say though, I really like every thing I see with respect to Microsoft's new technology - the phone, the surface tablet/pc and the XBox connect. I'm still bullish on Microsoft tech.
Points: +0, Score: 30/95
Wow, 30 points out of a total of 95. Hmm, I should probably keep my day job but I'm still headed back to the drawing board for 2013 predictions...