System Convergence


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The thing I love about the iPhone is that I only have to carry a single device that acts as a little media system. Not only does it act as a cell phone, but it takes pictures, videos, connects to various online apps, check email, browse the web and many other things.

This makes me wonder WHY we have so many specialized systems to run our cable/satellite TV with DVR, gaming/blu-ray/media storage, audio system, VoIP, etc. Why can’t they all be on a single system?

Case in point: DirecTV’s hardware runs on less than adequate OS, CPU and Memory which aren’t upgrade-able. It’s also ‘closed’, meaning there’s no way to have your media on your DVR play on your phone, PS3 or other devices. Sony did a good job with the PS3, other than the ‘closed’ OS they have on there. And then we have our laptop/desktops as well using yet another OS, CPUs, memory, etc.

Each of these media devices ought to be one. Similar to the iPhone example, but taking it to the next level.

What if we could have a media system that runs all of these programs as a Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) for Voice-Over-IP, Gaming, TV, DVR, video conferencing, etc? It’s eco-friendly too: Power savings from running 4-5 devices per household, reducing e-waste by 3:1 or more!

How could this work? All the services would come come together into your personalized private Cloud, where you set your buy and set your desired media services. Your physical hardware for the media system would pretty much act as a thin-client device, where all of the intensive computations and media files would come from the service provider’s cloud. That single machine would provide a consistent UX across media services and provide the local compression/decompression of media, while sharing it across devices (phones, TVs, etc). If the processor, memory, wireless technologies need upgrading, no problem, switch it out. You wouldn’t have to lose personal data and preferences, just migrate licences from your private cloud onto new device.

I know I’ve mentioned private clouds and service provider clouds quite a bit in this post. Thing is, I do foresee quite a bit of cloud ‘types’ in the years ahead. Making all of these clouds work together for media services will be needed in order for all the providers to ‘speak’ on a common Open digital media platform.

If you’re heard of anyone working on this, please let me know and I will update this post with their info.

**UPDATE** 10/14/09 – 8:40am PT

RELATED ARTICLE – Korean Electronics Giant Tries to Encourage ‘Apps’ for Its Phones, TVs and Other Devices

RELATED VIDEO – Media Convergence (CBS News)

** UPDATE** 10/15/09 – 8:43pm PT

Universal Digital Apps blog article from ActiveVideo

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~ by laurentbridenne on October 14, 2009.

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