Posted by: Olga Kharif on April 5, 2005
In two years, our cell phones could, theoretically, slim down to reach the size of a stamp. By 2007, Motorola’s semiconductor spin-off, Freescale, plans to create a postage stamp-sized package of chips for cell phones. It’s the size of these chips that often dictates the dimensions of the end product today. So as the chips slim down, that could, potentially, re-define the look and feel of the cell phone.
Possibly, a cell phone might become smaller than the iPod Shuffle music player. The phone might hang on a string around your neck and dial numbers using voice recognition, Franz Fink, a senior vice president at Freescale told me recently.
Or, the final product might retain its current size but offer a ton more memory space. You might be able to carry your whole music collection, your favorite movies, photos, books, your credit card information and your medical history on your little phone. Today, a normal-sized phone carrying a handful of songs is hailed a Superman; just witness the hoopla surrounding the upcoming Motorola iPod phone.
Or, the phone might offer a slew of new capabilities, like watching high-definition TV. Components to enable such capabilities won't fit into today's phone. So, basically, "applications we don't think are possible today will be available thanks to this design freedom", Fink says.
Note to self: Don't use my cell phone to mail my phone bill... Don't use my cell phone to mail my phone bill... Don't...