We’re looking forward to an interesting year ahead and if you’d like a sneak peak at what 2014 might bring in the Technology space then check out IntoMobile’s Top 5 phones launching in 2014 and also 8 trends that will shape up the mobile industry.
Top 5 Phones Launching in 2014
As that’s usually the case with Apple’s products, we expect them to get more attention than competing devices. iPhone 6 won’t be an exception, quite the contrary. Next year, Apple is taking its revolutionary step forward. Instead of building on the iPhone 5S, it will likely unveil something much better. We expect that the next iPhone will have a slightly bigger screen while keeping its pocketable body. Perhaps the Cupertino guys will go for 4.2 inch display, perhaps something even bigger. We can’t really tell at the moment. But yet again, we’re confident the iPhone 6 to sell like hot cakes.
Samsung Galaxy S5
Keeping to its tradition, Samsung will unveil the next-gen Galaxy S device at its own event in May or April. We doubt we’ll see the Galaxy S5 before that. We may, however, see an improved version of the Galaxy S4 released globally in the meantime, and that model will rock Snapdragon 800, rather than 600 (or Exynos 5) found in current models. The Galaxy S5 may come with a 2K screen, 3GB of RAM, and 32 or 64 GB of internal storage.
The next Nexus will likely be released closer to the end of the year, yet again offering an amazing value for the money. It will have the top-end specs, launching alongside the latest version of Android. By the time this phone is ready, we’re hoping Google will have that Key Lime Pie up and running.
LG will use the second half of 2014 to launch its own high-end smartphone. Just like the Galaxy S4, it too will boast a 2K screen along with the fastest chip available on the market. That could be Snapdragon 805 or something even faster, presuming it [chip] launches by that time. 3GB of RAM, a ton of built-in storage, and a top-end camera with 16-megapixel sensor and optical image stabilization are all expected to come included in the G3.
The HTC One successor is an important device for the Taiwanese handset maker. It will pretty much decide the future of HTC. If they fail to impress, they stand a chance of becoming irrelevant. HTC knows this and will make sure to deliver on that front. We’ll likely see it launched during the first quarter of next year.
We also expect to see some cool devices from Sony and Chinese companies, including Huawei, ZTE, Xiaomi, Oppo and Meizu. The last three are set for global expansion and they could easily cut margins from the rest of the players, offering top-end specs for a fraction of the price. These guys are super efficient but it remains to be seen whether they can make deals with major mobile operators.
8 Trends That Will Shape-Up the Mobile Industry in 2014
The industry will move beyond full HD screens, with Vevo scoring the bragging rights to launch the world’s first smartphone with 2K display (2,560 x 1,440 pixels). Other vendors will join the race featuring the same panels in their top-end models. We’re talking about such devices as Samsung Galaxy S5 and LG G3.
Closely related to the previous point, phablets are here to stay. Pixel density is cool, but we don’t really need 2K resolution on a 4.something-inch screen. Rather, this resolution will be reserved for phablets, which we take as devices that pack 5.3-inch screens or bigger. And with specs wars raging, suddenly everyone will want a bigger phone with flashier display.
Samsung and LG have pioneered this market with their Galaxy Round and G Flex smartphones, respectively. That’s just the beginning as both companies are working to further drive this trend, helping them score points (and technology) for the future growth. I doubt curved phone will become dominant in 2014, but we pretty much won’t stop talking about them.
NFC-based contactless payments have started becoming mainstream in some markets. However, until Apple decides to implement this technology, we’ll still be looking at something only geeks use. Presuming the iPhone 6 does rock an NFC chip and an accompanying software to make the “magic possible,” mobile wallets will finally take off, big time.
Both smart watches and smart glasses are set for a period of growth. Smart watches in particular are interesting as they allow even smaller companies to enter the market as we’ve seen with numerous crowd-funding campaigns. Smart glasses will also grow during next year, but the technology will still be too expensive for most folks. So they’ll have to “settle” for smart watches, instead.
Microsoft launching its own smartphones
Microsoft will complete the acquisition of Nokia in early 2014 and we may see their own smartphone launching later in the year. Whether it will be called Surface Phone or something else, it doesn’t matter. The Redmond giant knows this is the market worth fighting for and it will spare no resources to stay relevant. And in that sense we’ll see not one but few updates to Windows Phone released next year.
The first Ubuntu smartphone will launch next year, offering the “real convergence” to the users. And this means allowing them to use one device for all their needs. We can’t wait to see what these guys can do and whether their product could really change the way we think of mobile devices.
It remains to be seen what will come out from other platforms, namely BlackBerry, Firefox OS and Jolla/Sailfish. All of them think there’s more space in the market for growth but at the same time, they’re having hard time convincing key developers to jump on board.
BlackBerry will focus on its enterprise clientele, Mozilla will keep pushing Firefox OS to emerging markets, while Jolla will sell its platform as a viable alternative. While all that sounds plausible we’re not sure they’ll succeed in their efforts.