I’m going to say something controversial. Wait for it –
I don’t want to use my mobile exclusively.
I believe mobile devices are at an extreme disadvantage in many situations due to screen size, context, and most importantly input methods. They excel at consumption, and consumption alone. I am going to continue to use my personal computer to get stuff done.
Not everyone is the same, of course. If you happen to be a Nomad, by all means, continue the trend of switching entirely to mobile devices (and to build for them). If by any chance you are not a Nomad, and do have an actual place to call home, I urge you to reconsider.
Personal computers are amazing. They feature a non-throttled, unlimited power supply. They feature input methods that actually work (man, I wish voice recognition was there, but it’s not). They drive huge connected screens that allow you to display many things at once and multi task much more efficiently. They are, without question, the best and most effective computer to help you get work done.
Why are we trying so hard to switch to mobile, rather than adding mobile to the existing pool of choices and devices? Why can’t desktops, laptops, tablets, phones and smart watches coexist? Why are we so narrow minded in believing that “mobile” is going to be “the next big thing”, when we don’t even entirely know what mobile means? Does it refer to portable devices? Mobile phones? How about tablets?
So you have a home you’re renting, and it costs you a decent amount of money. Let’s see, how could we use that home of yours to your advantage? Your home is a fantastic place to browse the web, create your next essay, or write your next open source project. It is a safe, secure, cozy and (mostly) quiet place. You are not buying your iPad to bring it to the park, your using it to browse news in bed (yes, the majority of iPad usage is at home). You don’t actually want a tiny computer with a screen to browse news in the evening. You want a thin, large, screen that wirelessly connects to a very powerful base station in your living room. You just didn’t know it.
Before you cry out loud, of course I’m excited about mobile devices. I own two smartphones and various tablets. I wholeheartedly embrace the mobile revolution and am working hard (together with my colleagues at Google) to make the mobile web a better place for all of us. Hell, I use my iPad all the time. But I use it because the better alternative doesn’t exist.
In the world of computing, we stopped diversifying and today largely invest exclusively into mobile (including wearables). We are overcorrecting for our mistakes of not jumping on the new trend sooner, but doing so narrowed our vision dramatically.
I challenge you to invent the next big thing in home computing. Unless, of course, you want us all to become Nomads.