Testing the technology at the Mobile World Congress to gauge what will hit India soon
February 29 2016: This year marks a quarter century, since mobile phones became mass consumer tools, with the birth of digital cellular or 2G networks. Today, we can hardly imagine life without a handset. Which is why the largest annual mela of this industry-- the Mobile World Congress -- in Barcelona, Spain, last week, took as its mantra: 'Mobile is EVERYTHING'.
Well, 'Everything' can be a bit overwhelming --so we will rather look for something in this techsplosion of gadgets and gimmicks, that we can expect to experience in India -- soon. These are the top three technologies that will likely touch us in 2016.
1: Shoot selfie for security!
There's more to selfies than social media vanities! They can be an effective tool for identification -- doing away with passwords, or finger print scans, to protect your phone. It can even be alternative to verifying a credit card holder's online identity. And since the selfie is captured live, there's less chance for fraud. French mobile security firm Morpho, unveiled its selfie-based facial recognition technology, which uses the built-in camera of a phone or tablet, to enable secure account access. And since Samsung has come on board as one of the earliest to deploy Morpho technology, we can expect to be offered the option quite soon on their devices. Say 'cheese' to enter!
2.. Super fast charging
Oppo, the Chinese handset brand that entered India last year, has answered the prayers of millions of users, underwhelmed by their phone batteries : how to do a really fast charge. They unveiled their SuperVOOC Flash Charge technology, which enables a full 10 hours of talk time with only five minutes of charging, and fills a 2500 mAh battery in 15 minutes. This uses a custom battery and a low temperature charging technique. The technology is particularly useful for charging, while downloading a video or playing a graphics-heavy game.
3. Surya, namaskar! Solar smart phones
Solar chargers can be found on some makes of phone power banks, supplementing the mains charge option. Why hasn't anyone thought to have a solar option built into the phone itself? The challenge is to make a solar photo-voltaic panel thin enough to fit under the phone's screen and transparent enough to not affect the phone's HD and touch operations. The France-based Sunpartner Technologies has cracked the problem -- and last week unveiled a 5-inch Kyocera solar smart phone which needs just 3-minutes of exposure to light to provide one minute of talk time -- a great alternative for a quick call, when your phone battery dies on you! Sunpartner also unveiled smart watches from Vector Watch where a tiny solar panel effectively doubled the battery life from 30 to 60 days. All it needs is ambient light -- either sunlight or indoor lighting. Time for phone and watch owners to do a surya namaskar!