(WICHITA, Kan.) — As I gaze into my touch-screen enabled crystal ball, I see a few big things happening in the world of tech in 2012. I'm basing all of these predictions on how I see the tech world going, based on the last few years. I don't know for sure if any of these things will come true. I don't even like to gamble! But, this what I'm expecting to see happen over the next 12 months.
I’m expecting to see two new iPads. One being an update of the current model, called an iPad 3. This new model will have a much faster processor and probably a larger hard drive. I also think it will support 4G LTE. This will either continue to be priced at $499, or possibly as low $299.
We can also expect to see a smaller iPad, most likely called the iPad Mini. This will be designed to specifically compete with the Amazon Fire and the Nook Tablet. The iPad Mini will most likely have a 7 or 8 inch screen. I think this model will primarily be designed as, and marketed as, a reader with the ability to also play music and movies. It will probably not be compatible with as many apps as the last two generations of iPads. This device will most likely be a lot cheaper and aggressively priced at around $199.
2012 will also see a big update for the Apple TV. There might be a new model of the current set top box, but the big news for the Apple TV will most likely be in a new software update to support more apps. Apple TV will support more streaming services in full HD and possibly even some video games. As for those rumors that Apple will release a full TV set, I doubt it will happen in 2012, but if it does, it won’t come until much later in the year and closer to Christmas.
In the world of mobile.
AT&T couldn’t do it, but I think Sprint will. I think Sprint is going to make a move to buy T-Mobile, or at least bring it under its operating umbrella. The reason I think this merger will succeed where AT&T failed is simply because Sprint is so much smaller than AT&T.
Next, Verizon will get into video streaming. In many markets, Verizon offers its own version of cable TV called Fios, and its been fighting a battle of the ages to really compete with other companies. So, if you can’t beat Netflix or Hulu or Amazon, join ‘em! Verizon will announce it’s own network of video streaming services through devices like the Roku and mobile devices that are on its wireless network.
CDs and DVDs will see another nail it their coffins. I really think CDs and DVDs will become obsolete. Sales of CDs are down so drastically, and the popularity of streaming and downloading is higher than ever. I really don't think it's in the music industry's best interest to stay in the physical media game any longer.