[FoRK] Portable hotspots (or, why the iPad doesn't need 3G / future of Bluetooth questionable?)

David Edmondson dme at dme.org
Wed Feb 3 02:47:11 PST 2010

* jbone at place.org [2010-02-02 16:49:12]
> This device *should* be your phone.

I've see-sawed about this somewhat - sometimes I agree and other times
think that the 'always with you' device should be something more like
the Mifi device - a matchbox sized thing with two radios (one for
cellular WAN and another for PAN (originally thinking bluetooth, but the
argument for wifi is strong)) and a power source.

The matchbox device you'd carry everywhere, perhaps even implant it
subdermally. The minimal configuration would be the matchbox and
something like an existing bluetooth headset. To make a call you'd press
a button (or speak a command phrase) and then say who you want to speak

Any variety of other peripherals are possible - choose the one that
suits your current activity and interest. An iPod Touch like device for
simple browsing, email or an iPad device for more screen estate. If you
want a real keyboard, grab a bigger device that is lying around the

Telephone boxes would turn into terminals with a keyboard, large
screen, camera, speakers, etc. that would connect to your device. They'd
have no other connectivity and might run off a solar panel in the roof.

If you are at Fred's house and want to show him something, borrow his
iPad and tell it to communicate with your matchbox.

Another option would be to have the matchbox device in watch form. At
that point it would make sense to have a display and a couple of buttons
(perhaps this looks mostly like the existing bluetooth watches).

As real phones get smaller it will be awkward to 'do everything' on that
device, so it should simply be an access gateway, as you said.

David Edmondson, http://dme.org

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