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The ‘connected’ world is truly getting connected

Image courtesy: PushBullet
Image courtesy: PushBullet
This last week has been a hectic one for the online world, what with launches of new smartphones, Tablets and software. 
 
Apple came out with its 128GB iPad, in a sense, the Mother of all iPads, last Tuesday. So here we are, the iPad is now available is the following sizes, and sure is no other competitor that offers so many – 16 GB, 32GB, 64GB and 128 GB.
 
Apple fans need not get very excited though. This fourth-gen iPad does not have any updated processor or other performance enhancers, the only thing that makes it different from others of its ilk is the storage space – 128 GB. And of course, the price tag. This one starts at US$ 799, which is approximately Rs 40,000. Nobody has a clue yet why Apple has come out with this ‘enhanced’ model, but when has that stopped people from trying to guess.
 
Phenomenal Mobile Internet Growth
 
Since I am on the subject of Tablets, software solutions company Cisco has just released its Visual Networking Index Global Mobile Data Traffic forecast, and the report is mind-boggling. There’s no other adjective that can be used for the kind of statistics and data that Cisco has laid out here.
 
The first figure that jumps out at you from this forecast is that by 2017,Cisco predicts, there will be 5.2 billion mobile users in the world, from the 4.3 billion last year. Wow. Fits in with what a Gartner study had said earlier that by 2015-16, there will be more mobile devices connected to the Internet than desktops.
 
Here are some of the interesting points from the Cisco forecast:
Image courtesy: Cisco
Image courtesy: Cisco
 
• Internet traffic will reach 134 exabytes per annum (that’s a new word) by 2017, equivalent
to three trillion YouTube video clips to give you a perspective.
• While in 2012, 2G networks supported 76 per cent of all mobile connections, while 3G
supported 23 per cent and 4G only 1 per cent, by 2017, 2G networks will support 33 per
cent, 3G 57 per cent and 4G 10 per cent.
• In 2012, the average mobile user every month spent one hour watching video and two hours on audio, had one video call and downloaded one app. By 2017, the average mobile user will watch 10 hours of video a month and spend 15 hours on audio, will be on five video calls, and will download 15 apps.
• In 2013, smartphones will overtake laptops in the amount of mobile Internet traffic
generated, and by 2017, that smartphones will account for 67.5 per cent of all mobile
Internet traffic, compared with 14 per cent by laptops and 11.7 per cent by tablets. Also
by 2017, smartphones will account for 27.4 per cent of the mobile devices accessing the
Internet.
 
For those of you who are interested in reading up the entire forecast, go to this link.
 
Your PC and Mobile device can share everything now without wires
 
Which brings me to the last point of this column. Most of us may have mobile computing devices connected to the Net, as well as desktop machines at home or office, too. Yet, it becomes quite a tedious task when we have to transfer files or folders or that piece of music we like, between our desktop PC and the mobile device. 
 
Either you need to duplicate things, or physically connect your device to your PC, or ask some IT friend to help you sort things out.
 
Fret no longer. There’s a new smartphone app launched called PushBullet that claims to help you snyc your PC with your mobile without wires. Yup, that’s right. PushBullet has been designed by a California, USA located company and is a free Android App, launched on January 20 this year.
 
I feel that’s the only drawback of this App, that it is meant only for Android run devices. So, while your phone keeps you connected with the world, this new App connects it to you, the user of both, the PC and the phone.
 
So, for example, you want a file from your computer on your phone but these two instruments are nowhere near each other. PushBullet allows you to ‘Push’ your file or folder from your PC to your phone without hooking your phone up physically to your computer. The same with your various, 'To do' lists, like the grocery list or the Appointments list. Push it to your phone and it will be there when you need it. Then, when you are shopping in that department store, all you need is to refer to the list on your phone to see what you want to buy, and keep ticking off the items as you buy them. 
 
The App actually works on the Jellybean (Android 4.1) supercharged notification system to deliver this functionality.
 
Clearly, the way the digital world is moving, getting connected will very soon no longer mean being tethered to a desktop.
 
Previous columns by Sorab Ghaswalla
Sorab Ghaswalla
Sorab Ghaswalla
Sorab Ghaswalla is a journalist with near three decades of experience and has worked in well-known Indian and international print and television media organizations such as The Times of India, The Hindustan Times, The Economic Times, The Indian Express, United News of India (UNI), The Gulf Today and India TV. He has founded a Knowledge Services firm called New Age Content Services LLP, that leverages on the inherent strengths of the digital world. He also edits the website, www.whatsnewonthenet.com.
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