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Will smartphones replace computers by 2020?

Published on 10 October 13
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The phablet is best designed for businessmen, or users who are on the go; it has mastered the art of multi-tasking, allowing you to use multiple apps and features at once, and with the S pen, you can watch as the device turns your handwriting into type-written text.

It might surprise you that the smartphone, ten years ago, was practically an unknown entity; when all we knew was our hefty Nokia 3310 whose biggest feature was Snake, or, if we were lucky, Snake 2. However, in this year alone, 95 new smartphones were launched, with mobile phones predicted to outnumber human beings by 2014.

With smartphones and cheap mobile phone contracts making the market explode, and with computer sales getting weaker and weaker, will we see phones replace computer use within our homes and offices?

Phablets

Ever since Samsung launched the Galaxy Note back in 2011, the world has gone crazy for the phablet- coined for being part phone, part tablet. Many thought that the idea wouldnât catch on, but with the Note 3 hitting the market just last month, thereâs no denying that the phablet is the next big thing [excuse the pun] in the mobile phone arena.

And with yet more large-screened devices on their way, including the HTC One Max, we expect that more and more users will start opting for the larger smartphone. So why turn to your hefty laptop when you can email, video call and edit documents via your smartphone?

Tablets

Mentioning tablets here might be a bit of a cheat, but in many ways tablets are more closely related to the smartphone than to a traditional computer.

It is estimated that 58% of adults in the UK own a tablet, which has reportedly led to families spending more time together as a result.

Rather than settling down in the study or spare room every weekend, you can check your emails, book flights and stream live TV from the comfort of your living room, without having to lug wires around or suffer from an over-heated lap.

Children are learning to use technology at a younger age, with tablets offering a light-weight, ergonomic alternative to the traditional computer. They are also great distractions to take on long journeys, whether youâre in the car or thousands of miles up in the air, you can simply slip a tablet into your handbag and off you go.

Also, with tablets starting from as little as £100, it is much less of a financial commitment compared to buying a computer.

Apps

Yet another reason why itâs likely that smartphone and tablets will replace computers by 2020 is apps. Iâm sure a day doesnât go by without a smartphone user glancing at one of their apps; whether itâs to check their emails using Gmail, reading their Facebook notifications using the Facebook app, or even doing a few calculations with your phoneâs in-built calculator app, apps have changed the way we search out information and seek entertainment.

Apple wasnât wrong when they said thereâs an app for that; stats from Mobithinking.co.uk estimate that between 56 to 82 billion apps were downloaded in 2013 alone (and itâs still only October!), with a total of 200 billion downloads expected for 2017.

And with laptops and traditional desktop computers not allowing immediate access to social media sites, emails and weather sites like smartphones and tablets do, surely weâll see laptops diminishing?

Will smartphones replace computers by 2020? - Image 1


The phablet is best designed for businessmen, or users who are on the go; it has mastered the art of multi-tasking, allowing you to use multiple apps and features at once, and with the S pen, you can watch as the device turns your handwriting into type-written text.

It might surprise you that the smartphone, ten years ago, was practically an unknown entity; when all we knew was our hefty Nokia 3310 whose biggest feature was Snake, or, if we were lucky, Snake 2. However, in this year alone, 95 new smartphones were launched, with mobile phones predicted to outnumber human beings by 2014.

With smartphones and cheap mobile phone contracts making the market explode, and with computer sales getting weaker and weaker, will we see phones replace computer use within our homes and offices?

Phablets

Ever since Samsung launched the Galaxy Note back in 2011, the world has gone crazy for the phablet- coined for being part phone, part tablet. Many thought that the idea wouldnât catch on, but with the Note 3 hitting the market just last month, thereâs no denying that the phablet is the next big thing [excuse the pun] in the mobile phone arena.

And with yet more large-screened devices on their way, including the HTC One Max, we expect that more and more users will start opting for the larger smartphone. So why turn to your hefty laptop when you can email, video call and edit documents via your smartphone?

Tablets

Mentioning tablets here might be a bit of a cheat, but in many ways tablets are more closely related to the smartphone than to a traditional computer.

It is estimated that 58% of adults in the UK own a tablet, which has reportedly led to families spending more time together as a result.

Rather than settling down in the study or spare room every weekend, you can check your emails, book flights and stream live TV from the comfort of your living room, without having to lug wires around or suffer from an over-heated lap.

Children are learning to use technology at a younger age, with tablets offering a light-weight, ergonomic alternative to the traditional computer. They are also great distractions to take on long journeys, whether youâre in the car or thousands of miles up in the air, you can simply slip a tablet into your handbag and off you go.

Also, with tablets starting from as little as £100, it is much less of a financial commitment compared to buying a computer.

Apps

Yet another reason why itâs likely that smartphone and tablets will replace computers by 2020 is apps. Iâm sure a day doesnât go by without a smartphone user glancing at one of their apps; whether itâs to check their emails using Gmail, reading their Facebook notifications using the Facebook app, or even doing a few calculations with your phoneâs in-built calculator app, apps have changed the way we search out information and seek entertainment.

Apple wasnât wrong when they said thereâs an app for that; stats from Mobithinking.co.uk estimate that between 56 to 82 billion apps were downloaded in 2013 alone (and itâs still only October!), with a total of 200 billion downloads expected for 2017.

And with laptops and traditional desktop computers not allowing immediate access to social media sites, emails and weather sites like smartphones and tablets do, surely weâll see laptops diminishing?

Will smartphones replace computers by 2020? - Image 1

Will smartphones replace computers by 2020? - Image 2

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