I had been driving my IT team to understand that mobile devices where going to be the only devices we support very soon. I predicted in 5 years, but with this on display at CES 2011, I may have been too conservative.
This is the way we will all compute going forward. There will be the rare game/graphics system, but desktops and laptops are on their way out. The iPad, Kindle and Nook will still have some usefulness based on their size along with other tablets. But, the main device will be the smart-whatever you want to call it device.
The laptop was to be the desktop replacement, well it will not occur. The mobile device will be it.
Dell, IBM, HP and all the other PC suppliers. You competition is Motorola, LG, Apple and Samsung. Even within Apple will be the debate of when to forget about laptop R&D and move it all to the iPAd and iPhone.
I was at a presentation by Bill Gates in the early 90’s at a Comdex show where he laid out that this would be the future. It took 5 times as long as I had thought it would from that presentation (I thought Microsoft had all this stuff ready for release), but it is here.
No more wallet
No more laptop case with the extra power adapter
No more forgetting that darn file
It will all be without accessible through that device (size, weight and fashion impact of your choice) you choose.
Will there be haves and have nots, yes. Those people still on Sprint, enough said.
Now the question is how do IT departments prepare for this change. One could say, well it is just another platform, we will decide on which one to standardize on and go from there. I think not. The minor inconvenience caused by non-standard systems (Apple) making in-roads into your standardized network will be at a larger scale.
Prepare, prepare now for the user owned equipment that management will be badgered to allowing to connect. Prepare for the security issues, the multiple platforms from Apple, Google, Zoho and oh yeah, Microsoft, I guess.
Start thinking about it.
Start planning for it.
And, unless you are truly the IT Lord of All Things within your company, start realizing your control over the client side just left the building.