Here are my predictions for 2012, consider some may still be wishful thinking. Cash and control by the CEOs often trumps the better ideas, inevitable developments are sometimes delayed.
- Mass manufacturing of ARM Powered Laptops that have a performance above Intel Atom netbooks, can satisfy most consumers running Android (with full Ubuntu-like Chrome browser running on NDK with lots of RAM), Chrome OS, Ubuntu and Windows 8. In the first half of the year, the processors can be OMAP4460 1.5Ghz, OMAP4470 1.8Ghz, Tegra3 1.3Ghz (higher frequencies if available), i.MX6-Quad, Qualcomm S4, Exynos Dual-1.5Ghz and Quad-core. In the second half of the year those may use ARM Cortex-A15 such as OMAP5, Exynos 5, Project Denver and others already.
- ARM Powered Google TV will take off. Starting from the HDMI output of every high-end Android phone, dedicated ARM Powered Google TV boxes can sell for as little as $50, can accelerate the adoption of mass market video-on-demand to the HDTV.
- The only hope for the HDTV industry is to mass manufacture Quad-HD 4K2K screens at 55" and higher and sell them as soon as possible for sub-$5000 and later sub-$2000 prices. I think that upwards 400 million consumers would consider upgrading their HDTV to 55" Quad-HD type if it can be sold below $2000. Quad-HD content comes from Hollywood as all movies are already digitized in Quad-HD for digital cinema distribution, and with h264 and WebM, Quad-HD movies can fit on Blu-ray disks, 40 4K movies can fit on a 2TB hard drive, 4K content can even be streamed over VDSL, Cable or Fiber to the home Internet connections which those same hundreds of millions of consumers already have or can have for cheap.
- White Spaces will create the biggest chaos in the telecom carrier industry as schemes for cheap White Spaces routers will be available, using the http://FON.com method, whole cities can be blanketed with free or very cheap high-speed wireless data. Every ADSL/Cable/Fiber user can connect the White Spaces routers and provide bandwidth for each whole neighborhoods. White Spaces can become the main worldwide standard wireless data network system to replace cellular, LTE, Wimax for the future.
- Sub-$100 Android phones will become the most popular smartphone category to be sold during the year. Sub-$100 Android phones will have the performance and capacitive usability of at least a Nexus One phone which was the best high-end phone in the world at the beginning of 2010. Without being too greedy for certain hardware features such as Super AMOLED HD, special metal casings, it is possible that high-end Android can be mass manufactured to be sold mostly for as little as $200-$300 unsubsidized for unlocked no-contract use. Expect some high-performance Dual-core phones with nice big capacitive screens and full ICS experiences to be sold below $200 unsubsidized for pre-paid plans soon for sure.
- Over 500 million smartphones to be sold, 90% of those Android. Over 100 million Tablets to be sold, more than 70% of those Android.
- Tablets with keyboard docks are basically laptops with touch screens and will replace most laptop sales. There will be fat and thin keyboard docks, some include batteries and ports while other are very thin keyboards that can be fixed magnetically or by hooks to cover the tablet to function as a thin screen protector. Keyboards remains the fastest way to input text and to be productive with a computing device.
- 7" Tablets will be the most popular size excluding the keyboard docking tablets. Hundreds of millions of consumers will want to use a 7" tablet in their jacket pockets when going outside. A 7" tablet has a 2x to 3x larger screen surface area compared to a smartphone, offering a better experience for video playback, web browsing, games, apps and more.
- Wearable computing will take-off in several areas. From Android wrist watches, to head-mounted displays with augmented reality, to bluetooth headphones, controls that can be snapped to clothing. All can function using Bluetooth to synchronize and use the smartphone or 7" tablet as the brain of the system. The headmounted display system can look like the Motorola Kopin Golden-i which I have used for the past 2 months for augmented video-blogging. Android wrist watches can be used to view notifications and interact with basic functions of Android such as initiating a call, checking updates and other basic features that may not necessitate to pull out the smartphone or 7" tablet from the pocket.
- E-readers will be used for more than basic e-book reading. Using the Chrome-to-phone type functionality, users can click on articles on their laptop and have those instantly synchronize or beam to the e-reader, thus offering a secondary screen much more comfortable to use for article reading. Also collaborative real-time annotations will be the most powerful usage of e-readers for productivity in schools and businesses. Upwards more than 100 million e-readers can quickly be demanded as soon as effective collaborative annotation software and cloud services are available using a stylus. It'll be the most popular way to collaborate on writing and reviewing documents for schools and business.
- ARM Cortex-A15 will be shown early 2012 with devices available on the market before the end of the year. Expect a performance as high as 4x that of current dual-core ARM Cortex-A9 devices.
- ARM Powered servers will be deployed in large deployments, it's possible that Google and other cloud services companies start using ARM servers exclusively in whole new datacenters.
- Android@Home will take off, including embedded ARM Microcontrollers in all types of home appliances, in all electrical outlets, synchronizing all appliances with Android. This is the Internet of Things, we're talking Billions of new ARM Powered devices to be sold every year.
- Stocks that are likely to collapse: Microsoft, Intel, Nokia, Apple, RIM, HP, Facebook, Twitter, Groupon, Zynga and more. By collapse I do not mean instant bankruptcies, but simply that their value may get halved quickly as soon as investors realize those companies don't have much prospects for keeping the same levels of hype and profit margins that makes their current market cap.
- Microsoft does have a chance only if they pivot, it may require a new CEO and new board of directors. They need to stop focusing on proprietary software licencing and they need to use and support Android and focus on making profits on cloud services instead. Microsoft can have the resources to compete with Google on cloud services, it's their only chance to stay highly valuable.
- Intel does have a chance only if they pivot, it may require a new CEO and a new board of directors. They need to licence the ARM architecture and use Intel's semiconductor design and manufacturing facilities to try to make some of the better performance high-end ARM Processors, it's possible Intel can make a very powerful ARMv8 and ARM Cortex-A15 variant and that could bring them a lot of business.
- Apple will still remain successful but they cannot remain a $376 Billion company. Right now, 65% of Apple's profits comes only from the iPhone. We've already established that it's very unlikely Apple can grow that profit stream from the iPhone as sub-$100 Android phones are to be the most popular smartphone category worldwide. I think it's very unlikely that Apple can find a new cash cow to keep as high level of profits and when investors figure that out, the value of Apple on the stock market can be halved quickly.
- Nokia's only chance is to use Android as soon as possible. Same for RIM and HP. But if they insist on being stubborn, they can only go towards collapse.
- All software patent lawsuits are all going to be cancelled and dismissed. It is a worthless strategy of Apple, Microsoft and Oracle to try to sue Android companies on bogus software patents. The Android companies combined have many more patents which they can use defensively and are much more powerful than any of these proprietary platform providers regardless of how many patent trolls each of them can hire to try to extract bans, reporting on these patent lawsuits is and will remain a waste of time. All bloggers need to understand that none of these patent lawsuits are at all relevant. Most of these patents can easily be proven to be worthless simply by showing prior-art to the courts, in nearly all cases there is prior-art that can be shown, simply, stop talking and thinking about it. It'll turn out to have been the biggest waste of time for everyone involved in writing and reading tech blogs in 2011.
- Google+ can overtake Facebook. All Google+ needs to near-instantly overtake Facebook are some features to filter and recommend items to each user based on the +1 ratings that people can do on Google+ and all over the web. Basically, expect Google+ to replace your Google News, Google Reader, Twitter, Facebook, Techmeme, Groupon, IMDB, Skype, Baboo it even might become the main way to generate personalized YouTube playlists.
- Consumer 4K2K Quad-HD camcorders to be sold below $2000 are possible. This may be put investments people have put into Red cameras to risk. Basically new sub-$2000 DSLR and camcorders can include 4K2K Quad-HD video recording simply by using one of the newest processors.
- Camcorders may run Android for support for apps such as one-click upload of pictures and video to YouTube and Google+, collaborative video editing, video streaming, title, description, tags editing etc. More and more camcorders and photo cameras will thus include WiFi, a touchscreen and Android.
- Google may expand Google App Engine to support PHP/Mysql CMS scripts such as WordPress, phpbb, mediawiki and more. Google can thus provide free ads-free hosting up to millions of pageviews per month and above that, require that people use Google ads or pay a small fee for the cloud hosting bandwidth. Google can guarantee secure backups, upgrades, support and more. It'll be disruptive for the hosting and domains industry.
- Some Governments will legalize piracy and make one step further, levy a tax on the ISP or a new tax that every citizen will have to pay to sponsor all artists in each country. For example about $10/person/month for everyone in Europe, the USA and a few other rich regions of the world can collect over $120 Billion per year, which is more than enough to sponsor all music, movies, tv, writers, open source free software programmers and more. Popularity of all works online can reliably be measured to compensate content creators accordingly. This will eliminate existing intermediaries like labels/studios/publishers/proprietary software companies and it is going to be very disruptive towards the new intermediaries like netflix/hulu/spotify/kindle/prime/itunes and other.
I posted 573 videos from 15 tradeshows, with 7.1 Million views on my YouTube channel (doubling my total view count to 14.7 Million), thank you for your 7159 comments, 7397 Likes, thank you for reading my blog, watching my videos, commenting, rating, sending news tips and sharing! Thanks to my 4520 followers on Google+! Since August, I post most of my tech opinions on my Google+. Here are some of my Highlights in ARM Powered devices that I blogged on ARMdevices.net in 2011:
Microsoft announces and shows Windows 8 on ARM
All-in-one Motorola Atrix 4G launched
Nvidia announces Project Denver (I think it may be their ARM Cortex-A15 project)
OLPC shows ARM Powered XO-1.75 Laptop
Google confirms ARM Powered Google TV
Pixel Qi shows 7" and announces 9.7" and 10.1" 1280x800
Seco shows pico projector in a lamp concept
view top-20 CES 2011 videos
CERN accelerates to 3.5TeV to find Higgs Boson (7TeV in 2014)
Archos has 22% of the tablet market share in France
Samsung Galaxy S2 is launched
Mediatek powers $80 Android smartphones
LG launches first OMAP4430 phone
Google has a giant Booth and dominates at MWC
My interview with Honeycomb and Ice Cream Sandwich designer Mathias Duarte
Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 launched
TI talks OMAP5 ARM Cortex-A15
MHL is the new standard for HDMI output through the MicroUSB connector
I ask RIM when Playbook is to get Android apps support
ST Ericsson A9500 ARM Cortex-A9 development kit launched
Nvidia shows quad-core Tegra3
ST Ericsson ST6715 powers sub-$100 Android smartphones
Sony Ericsson Liveview is the first wearable Android wrist watch
view my top MWC videos
Arnova 8 launched
Arnova 10 launched
Asus Transformer Honeycomb laptop launched
Nintendo 3DS launched, first mass produced non-glasses 3D portable screen
Shenzhen Ider Sub-$60 Android Set-top-box launched
Zinwell shows $70 Android set-top-box
HTC Flyer with stylus launched
Beagleboard xM launched
TI DaVinci DM816x and DM814x can do 4K2K video playback
Hard Kernel Samsung Exynos 4210 tablet development kit launched
Trim Slice Tegra2 desktop launched
QNX talks about the Blackberry Playbook software
Seco ARM/x86 cross platform modules
Toradex shows Tegra2 on SO-DIMM form factor
My interview with ThePirateBay founder Peter Sunde
I'm interviewed on German Radio DRadio Wissen about my video-blogging
view top-15 CeBIT 2011 videos
view top-6 Embedded World videos
First Archos G9 rumors leak
Larry Page starts as Google CEO
Archos at the Shenzhen electronics fair
My review of the $95 Kinstone ARM Cortex-A9 Android tablet
My review of the $87 3.5" capacitive Android Smartphone FG8, which I still use as my main smartphone today and it works great
Behind the scenes at a little Shenzhen Tablet/Laptop factory
Geniatech talks ARM Cortex-A9 Set-top-box
Karasnn talks cheap Mediatek Android Smartphones
My review of the $120 Android 3.5" capacitive iphone4-clone H2000
Archos 7c Home Tablet, Rk2918 capacitive shown at Archos Shenzhen headquarters
Hello Kitty booth in Hong Kong
Arnova 10 G2 first demonstrated
AmLogic ARM Cortex-A9 set-top-box tested
Ramos ARM Cortex-A9 capacitive tablets booth tour
Rockchip RK2918 in a potentially sub-$50 Android Set-top-box
$125 ARM Cortex-A9 dual-core NEC/Renesas powered capacitive tablet by Livall.cn
Honeycomb keyrings at Rockchip RK2918 booth
My Android Tablet review in the Qatari Desert 2, 3
Archos dominates Hong Kong Android tablet sales
Walking around at the huge Shenzhen Smartphones market, where the worlds cheapest Android smartphones can be found
view top videos filmed at 3 Shenzhen and Hong Kong fairs in April 2011
The Chrome OS Team Answers some of my ARM Powered Chromebook questions at Google I/O
Solar Impulse does first solar-powered international flight from Switzerland to Belgium
Google Wallet launched
Samsung Origen Exynos 4210 development kit launched
Pixel Qi shows 10.1" 1280x800 screen
HD videoconferencing shown on TI OMAP4430
TI talks OMAP4 memory bandwidth
ZiiLabs ZMS-20 Dual-core tablet reference designs shown
Android for point-of-sale systems
Cupp computing turns any x86 laptop into an ARM Powered Laptop
Pixel Qi can be solar powered
Shizhu shows Pixel Qi tablets
Walking with Monkeys in the Taiwanese jungle
Qualcomm Dragonboard MSM8260/MSM8660 development board launched
Microsoft shows Metro UI for Windows 8 tablets
view top-20 Computex 2011 videos
My first time flying on the Airbus A380 airplane
iWave Freescale i.MX51/53/27 based PCB designs
Genesi talks ARM hardfloat hardware acceleration
Freescale launches i.MX6 Quad-core processor in tablet reference design
Genesi launches new cheaper i.MX53 based ARM Powered Laptop platform
History and status of Freescale's Microcontrolers
Freescale i.MX53 development kit
Boundary Devices 12" i.MX53 Android tablet launched
Linaro status in June 2011
My first video of the Archos G9 tablets
Google buys Motorola (still processing through worldwide Government regulators needing to accept it)
Lenovo A1 7" Android tablet launched
Toshiba shows awesome 55" Quad-HD 4K2K screens, I want them to sell it below $1999 now!
Galaxy Note 5.3" Super AMOLED HD Android smartphone launched, 2, 3
Galaxy Tab 7.7 shown with large Super AMOLED screen, has yet to be released, my guess the screen is too hard/expensive to manufacture for now and they may redesign to fit jacket pockets.
E Ink for credit cards shown
Samsung Galaxy S2 LTE shown, with 4.5" Super AMOLED Plus screen
Sharp shows 8K4K 85" HDTV, worlds best TV
My interview with E Ink about the latest news and developments at E Ink
Sony Android tablets P and S launched
Sony PRS-T1 Android E Ink e-reader with infrared dual-touch touchscreen launched
JVC GC-PX10 camcorder launched, has since become my new 1080p camcorder, the JVC Falconbrid processor can maybe soon record 4K2K video at prosumer-prices
Samsung Galaxy Y launched, cheapest Samsung Android phone yet, also see W, Y Pro
Samsung Super Clear LCD compared with Super AMOLED Plus
Huawei Mediapad 7" 1280x800 Honeycomb Qualcomm MSM8260 tablet launched
3M invests in Pixel Qi
Arnova 10 G2 sold for $99 with newspaper subscription
My review of the sub-$100 N5Zero 5" capacitive Rk2918 Android tablet
Sharp, Toshiba and Sony launch 4K2K Quad-HD TVs and Projectors, mass produce them and sell them below $2000 now, thank you!
Texas Instruments OMAP4460 selected as Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich reference platform for Galaxy Nexus ICS launch
OLPC Summit in San Francisco discuss latest OLPC news in October 2011
Raspberry Pi $25 ARM Powered Desktop launched
I'm Watch Android wrist watch launched
Ubuntu on ARM status in October 2011
Marvell PXA2128 "Tri-Core" tablet reference design launched
Freescale i.MX6 Quad-core Tablet reference design performance demonstrated
ARM Cortex-A7 big.LITTLE announced
ARM Mali Graphics status in October 2011
ARM Cortex-A15 prototype demonstrated
My interview with ARM Inc (USA) President Simon Segars
My interview with ARM CTO Mike Muller at the launch of the ARMv8 64bit architecture, after his keynote
My hands-on with the ARM Powered OLPC XO-1.75
MHL shows the latest HDMI Android features, your smartphone becomes your desktop, your home console and your Set-top-box
ARMv8 Technology Preview, a highly technical presentation video
Calxeda EnergyCore ARM Powered server launched with HP Project Moonshot, to disrupt the server market
AppliedMicro X-Gene ARMv8 64bit Server processor demonstrated running on FPGA, a bit more than a year before it's ready
Mali T-658 announced, PS3 quality graphics in your pocket
My head-mounted augmented video-blogging system demonstrated and explained, 2
Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich source code is released, soon smoothly working on every ARM Processor, OMAP4430, ST-Ericsson A9500, Tegra3, Rockchip, ZiiLAbs ZMS-20 more coming..
Samsung announced Exynos 5250 ARM Cortex-A15
Archos Home Connect launched, probably best home radio alarm clock
Archos Smart Home Phone, probably best home DECT phone
Ice Cream Sandwich previewed on the Archos 101 G9 Tablet
My first video of the Samsung Galaxy Nexus
Test driving the Renault Twizy electric car
Archos 101 G9 1.5Ghz OMAP4460 Turbo launched, performance possibly around Tegra3 and priced $200 cheaper
Google Analytics launching social media analytics tools
My interview with Yves Behar, probably the top consumer electronics designer in the world
My interview with MG Siegler, the most influential Apple fanboy number 1
My interview with Gabe Rivera, Techmeme.com CEO, most influential tech news aggregator
I was interviewed for 10 minutes on Twit by Leo Laporte and Sarah Lane!, showcasing my head-mounted augmented video-blogging system and voicing some of my tech opinions
Thanks for watching my videos of 2011, Happy New Year!
ARM Media Processing Division's Jem Davies and Ian Smythe talk about the launch of the new Mali-T658 GPU. It can start to appear in devices by the end of 2012 and beginning of 2013. This is like having a 250 Gigaflops super computer in your pocket. The performance is anywhere from 2x to 4x faster than the Mali-T604 announced last year. Now supporting configurations up to 8 cores. It easilly supports 4K resolutions. It's compatible with the newly announced ARMv8 64-bit architecture. The Mali-T658 delivers desktop-class performance, achieved by doubling the number of GPU cores, doubling the number of arithmetic pipelines within each core and improving the compiler and pipeline efficiency. Find more information at http://www.arm.com/products/multimedia/mali-graphics-hardware/mali-t658.php
- ARM Announces New GPU (arm.com)
- ARM unveils new GPU chip design (bbc.co.uk)
- ARM Planning OCTO-CORE Mobile Graphics Processor for 2013 [Guts] (gizmodo.com)
- ARM's new Mali GPU promises 10x leap in performance (electronista.com)
- ARM releases a speedy new graphics core for chip makers (venturebeat.com)
- ARM Mali-T658 GPU: 10x faster graphics than what's inside the Samsung Galaxy S II (intomobile.com)
- ARM Unveils New Mali-T658 GPU, Promising Ten Times Better Graphic Performance Over Current-Gen Chips (androidpolice.com)
- ARM outs new Mali-T658 GPU (slashgear.com)
- ARM Mali-T658 supercharged GPU announced (techradar.com)
At the recent CEATEC consumer electronics show in Japan (which I had tried to attend and video-blog at but I did not find a sponsor in time), Sharp, Toshiba and Sony showcased their first consumer-oriented 4K2K screens and projectors, perhaps finally leading up to more 4K2K for the mass market. Eventually more affordable, because Toshiba's 55" Regza 55×3 Quad-HD is announced to be priced at over $10 thousand. Sony's VPL-VW1000ES Quad-HD projector is even more expensive at upwards $20 thousand. Sharp did not yet announce a price for their 60" Quad-HD TV, but they showed what they call their new so-called Integrated Cognitive Creation (ICC) processor for what they claim to be higher-quality Quad-HD upscaling.
4K2K is awesome. And putting it on 55" or 60" screens and in projectors sounds like a good target. They need to sell 4K at sub-$2K. They need to price 4K at $2000 and below and not $10K and they need to mass produce 4K2K as a priority now instead of 3D.
The 4K content solution:
On the Internet, the most downloaded 1080p movies are below 10GB per movie. That means 4K movies can be compressed at a below 40GB file size. That means that a 4K movie can fit on a current Blu-ray disc. That means that more than 50 4K movies can fit on a $50 2TB hard drive.
There is no 4K distribution problem.
YouTube supports 4K streaming at below 20mbitps today.
The most downloaded 1080p movies are encoded at below 9mbitps bit rate. That means that a 4K movie can be streamed with a 36mbitps or faster Internet connection (at same "full" quality level per pixel), which more and more people can access today using a regular VDSL Internet connection over copper wires and even faster over the coaxial based network. Millions of consumers already have Fiber internet to the home, and millions more could easily get it. Those people can get 1Gbitps over the connection, that is more than enough to stream any 4K content needed.
Hollywood has already digitized most of their 35mm movies to the 4K2K format, which is already becoming the digital standard for Cinemas worldwide. And most of the new movies are being recorded using 4K2K cameras anyways and are already natively recorded in that format. So it would actually be a piece of cake for the film industry to provide every movie ever made in the 4K2K format, easily distributed on Blu-ray, on hard drives or streamed using 36mbitps or faster home internet connections and progressively downloaded using slower connections (if you only have a 20mbitps download ADSL connection, you may wait about half an hour before the 4K movie can start. Or you can get the 3K version at half the bitrate and that still would look 2x better on a 4K display than the same content in the 1080p format).
It is very common for all consumers to take digital pictures at 8megapixels or higher. Most new digital picture cameras take 8Mpix pictures or higher today. Even most new high-end smartphones take 8Mpix pictures. put the SD card from those cameras in your 4K2K TV, and for the first time, you can see the full quality of your digital photographs. Just to display your personal photography onto those 4K2K displays wil be worth the enthusiasm, even if you do not have fast enough Internet, even if you can't get a lot of 4K content on Blu-ray or directly onto hard drives, then still just as a picture viewer, the demand for 4K2K is worth it now.
Dear TV industry, please stop making 3D now and start mass producing 4K2K screens and projectors now! Get the price down below $2000 as soon as possible, than you.
- Sharp 8K4K TV, 7680×4320 resolution, 85″, the future of HDTV (armdevices.net)
Sharp is demonstrating the most insane HDTV ever, at 8K4K, they recorded a bunch of demonstration videos, the quality is amazing. Here's a video interview with a product manager. They say that the sources for 8K4K content are missing, but we can all at least upscale our 20 Megapixel consumer photo camera pictures on there, and I think they should just tell Hollywood to transfer the 8K4K versions of all movies onto cheap soon to cost $50 2TB hard drives.
Quad HD is cool, here is Toshiba's latest Quad-HD TV technology.
This is still awesomely cool, now they call it Falconbird, and now they have a prototype camcorder (that requires 4 HDMI outputs to output the 4K2K video, but they still don't want to mass manufacture it.
- JVC 4k2k consumer camcorder "just around the corner" (slashgear.com)
I haven't yet got the box, and I haven't seen these features being confirmed or not by Google TV representatives, it's being released right now in the US market. Here are some of my expectations for very interesting software and cloud service features to be available with the Google TV platform (currently an Intel CE4100 exclusive, but no reason it won't work for ARM Cortex A9 SoCs soon as well). I base my speculation on a consideration that Google TV would be a totally open and centrally uncontrollable platform as Google has been describing it to be. If you have any means to confirm if any of these features can happen or not on Google TV, please post in the comments:
1. BitTorrent download/streaming: Just type in the name of a movie, TV show, game or song and it will download to an external USB hard drive, or perhaps even better, it will download to your cloud based storage, so-called online seedbox services which can download any BitTorrent on 1gbit/1gbit symmetrical connections and then stream you the downloaded content after minutes. Imagine such international seedboxing network, that can directly interlink and shares Petabytes among the most popular contents with each other, so in many cases, when you request a popular content, it will already be pre-cached on that seedbox or can quickly be cached within that network and instantly streamed to your Google TV box.
Not very legal? Who knows, laws can be changed by politicians, I expect Google TV could accelerate the implementation of Global Licence regulation, where everyone pays a sort of tax on their Internet Service Provider, which thus is redistributed to content creators directly, excluding old-media intermediaries.
It will be interesting to see if the local BitTorrent client app or if the global remote untracable encrypted seedboxing approach will dominate. I expect that this p2p app on Google TV cannot be blocked or remotely removed by Google, Sony, Logitech or by anyone else, that is, if the platform truly is open. I also expect live p2p streaming to work. So you could also watch any TV channel like this, with a quality bitrate that is the same as your own upload bandwidth, as everyone watching is expected to upload to other viewers in real-time so unlimited amounts of users can tune in for free to any live TV channel they want.
Subscribing to BitTorrent RSS feeds will be a great way to auto-download shows and have them ready stored on the USB hard drive to playback on your TV or to sync to your portable Android device.
2. Cloud-based DVR service: while I wonder if Google TV can record TV contents from its HDMI input, with or without needing to use the recently cracked HDCP copy-protection code, while it may be cool to store HD digital copies of TV contents on a simple external USB hard drive, the most interesting DVR feature of Google TV may be remote cloud based DVR services to be provided by Google and perhaps other cloud service providers. Basically, you hit the record button, and that content is recorded on the cloud. The way it truly would happen, is that Google is recording every TV channel all the time no matter what, and depending on laws and regulations, users should be able to get access to all of that content on-demand after broadcast.
This is one big Global cloud based DVR of all channels. Maybe it would require Google to also provide real-time compression of all those recordings so that people with slower bandwidths can still stream all those cloud DVR recordings. If laws and regulation for DVR use does not allow everyone from rewinding and watching everything on-demand, then at least as long as the user has scheduled any specific recordings, has clicked "record" before the show started, then all that content could be provided back. The question is, may the user click a "Record all channels all the time" button?
Google has been doing global cloud based DVR recordings for a while now, as they need it anyways for their content ID matching technology. So now, the release of Google TV may bring those cloud DVR recordings closer to YouTube as well, as TV contents will be posted to Youtube automatically, depending on rights with content makers. If a TV channel opts-in, 100% of their broadcasts can thus be automatically published to Youtube.
3. Game console: 3D graphics accelerating performance should be powerful enough to provide Wii-like gaming graphics. Logically, there will be emulators available for all Nintendo consoles up till N64 and more if Nintendo agrees to licence its games legally. Also, Google has been saying that video gaming is a big part of their plans for Android 3.0 Gingerbread, which probably also includes support thus for the Google TV platform. Which game controllers will be best to use? The Wii remote or any other decent Bluetooth remote control will probably work great for multi-player gaming.
4. YouTube Leanback: the key for Google TV is to provide an excellent Leanback experience for all web videos. It is absolutely important that when people search for anything, that the best most user targetted video for that topic is displayed in full screen instantly in one click. The recommendations algorithm that Google and other app providers need to implement as overlay layer on top of this Leanback experience is crucial as well. There needs to be one big green "Like" button and one big red "Skip" button of which all user ratings need to be carefully aggregated to thus provide personalized Leanback web video experience. This experience could be so good that it could take over most of people's daily 5-hours of TV watching.
Imagine this scenario: Sit on your sofa, hit the green button. Leanback starts. It knows your topics of interest and launches a video in a mix of those genres that you like and from a source it thinks you will enjoy at that moment in time based on knowing your tastes. If you are in any specific mood for any specific contents, just type those in to tweak the recommendations algorithm at that moment to bring you contents in those more specified areas. At any moment you can add tags, add or select genres and topics to thus tweak what it brings to you at that moment.
The goal with Leanback is that the algorithm can bring you full screen video contents that should make you think following statement at every single time: Oh wow, this video is just awesome! more!
Eventually, Leanback should provide in-video automatic editing. If you are in a hurry, you could watch just the best parts of any video, skip past the boring parts. The way it learns what parts of videos are best, is that this green "Like" button and red "Skip" or fast-forward buttons can be pushed at any specific times by all users. When something really cool is going on in a video, you can hit the green "Like" button again, it thus creates hot-zones on all videos to thus be able to extract the best scenes and even add them to playlists together with the best scenes from other videos.
5. Content publishing: Google TV could turn out to be one of the futures central tool for creating your own TV contents and publishing it from your living room. The HD webcam such as Logitech's is not only going to be used for HD video-conferencing, which already is ground-breaking and revolutionary (second best "just like being there" experience with family, friends, colleagues and customers). The HD Webcam could be used to record multi-user live podcast shows, with someone somewhere doing the real-time multi-camera editing, content that can be streamed live by unlimited other users and can be stored thus as TV shows. But it should also support uploading and publishing of any HD video contents from a camcorder, just plug in your HD camcorder to the USB connector of Google TV, and that video content can be published to YouTube HD this way.
6. Quad-HD content streaming: the reason Quad-HD does not yet exist in all our most modern HDTVs is not so much a technological issue, but more of an infrastructure issue. Regular terrestrial, satellite, cable TV networks supposedly do not provide enough bandwidth to provide Quad-HD TV contents on them. And in turn as well, no HDTV makers yet want to produce the Quad-HD screens saying the reason for not making them is because there is no content to watch. Google TV changes this. In theory, Quad-HD is just a newer processor inside of the HDTVs. The upgrade of processor inside of the HDTV to support 3840x2160 may just cost $50 more than the current 1920x1080 HDTV, at least if it is mass manufactured with quickly expanding demand. YouTube already supports Quad-HD content streaming. I estimate that the bandwidth required for on-demand Quad-HD video streaming could be around 24mbit/s. Many Google TV users may already have enough bandwidth to support this. And if full bandwidth is not always available, then any resolution above 1080p and below 2160p could be streamed at adaptable bitrates. It may be true that above 46" Quad-HD screen may be required for good use of that extra resolution. But I have seen Quad-HD at trade shows for years now, and every time I see demonstrations, it simply is amazing and awesome, even just watching 8megapixel digicam pictures on a Quad-HD screen up close is an awesome experience, I find it 100x more interesting than the marketing fad that is 3DTV.
- Playing With YouTube Leanback On Google TV: Nice! (searchengineland.com)
- Google Leanback on TV is really neat (zdnet.com)
- How It Feels to Use Sony's First Google TV [Video] (gizmodo.com)
- YouTube Rolls Out Leanback on Eve of Google TV's Launch (mashable.com)
Google announced this new resolution support on Youtube a bit weirdly: 4K is 4096x3072 thus 3072p. It is not "4096p" and not "1096 x 3072 pixels". Or is 4K supposed to amount to 4 Million pixels? Here's the text from Youtube's announcement (as posted at this moment to http://youtube-global.blogspot.com/2010/07/whats-bigger-than-1080p-4k-video-comes.html):
Today at the VidCon 2010 conference, we announced support for videos shot in 4K (a reference resolution of 4096 x 3072), meaning that now we support original video resolution from 360p all the way up to 4096p.
We always want videos on YouTube to be available in the highest quality possible, as creators intend. In December of last year, we announced support for 1080p, or full HD. At 1096 x 3072 pixels, 4K is nearly four times the size of 1080p. To view any video in a source resolution greater than 1080p, select "Original" in the video quality pulldown menu:
Here's my reaction:
- WHOAAAWWW! Is this 1st of April or something? Is Google talking for real?
- What is the bitrate going to be for 4K? My guess, based on calculating the bitrate per pixel of 2mbit/s for Youtube 720p and 4mbit/s for Youtube 1080p is that for 4K it would be something like 24mbit/s. That's within the same bitrate as our 15 year old DV format (like miniDV tapes). That's like the top bitrate established for 1080p AVCHD format. This is totally manageable! We can get 50mbit/s and 100mbit/s "easilly" over here in Scandinavia. If Google would provide full bandwidth delivery of Youtube 4K worldwide, we could seriously enjoy this!
- I wish the LCD and Projector industry focus on making Quad HD or 4K screens (however they should be called) instead of that 3D fad thing. Logically, thanks to Youtube 4K, we could be getting 4K HDTVs and projectors for less than $1000 by this time next year. Because the processors are already ready, they just need to be put into mass manufactured screens and projectors.
Another point in Youtube's announcement that I would like to learn something about and maybe start to counter:
To give some perspective on the size of 4K, the ideal screen size for a 4K video is 25 feet; IMAX movies are projected through two 2k resolution projectors.
I have seen Quad HD LCD screens at trade shows. Those were in the 50-82" range I think. They are absolutely amazing (Sergey Brin has one), some of the most impressive demonstrations I have ever seen in going to most of the trade shows since 2005. See my video of the Samsung 3840x2160p 82" LCD HDTV. See my video of the JVC 4K2K HDTV and Projector.
I believe that one can see higher than 1080p on HDTV starting below 50" sizes. The iPhone 4 has a 326DPI 3.5" screen. I don't see why we can't get higher DPI on our HDTVs than 52DPI on a 42" HDTV? Why should the iPhone 4 have a 6x higher DPI than my 42" 1080p Full HD HDTV? If they were to put 4K processor in my 42" HDTV, it would still "only" have a 111DPI, still much less than what they have done on the iPhone 4. Sure my 42" HDTV has 132 times larger surface area than an iPhone (a 42" HDTV could fit 132 of iPhone's screens), if you want to set a standard for what the DPI per field of vision should be based on the iPhone 4 held at half arms length (50cm) with 326DPI screen, then a 42" HDTV with 4K screen of 111DPI would need to be seen within 1.5 meters of a distance to get the same effect. Usually a sofa is placed 4-6 meters away from the LCD HDTV. Perhaps people will want to sit closer to the screen to experience something closer to 4K quality. At the photo exhibitions and museums of paintings, it is common for people to approach the images at distances closer than 1 meter to appreciate the details in the image. Perhaps 4K would be more suitable sizes above 50" and preferably perhaps even above 60" in diagonal. 67" 4K HDTV would have a 70DPI thus achieve same pixels per angle of view at 2.5 meters distance. 65" 1080p HDTV is $2500 today at Best Buy, how much more would it cost to include the latest 4K processor in there to stream 4K contents from Youtube 4K? Perhaps 4K HDTVs in the living room can be displaying any of our existing 12megapixel images taken with any recent digital photo camera, slideshows on a 4K screen look awesome. Thus Picasa could be streaming out some amazing customized and personalized slideshows, to be marvelled at in the living room at closer distance than usual.
Another point in Youtube's announcement that I would like to discuss:
Because 4K represents the highest quality of video available, there are a few limitations that you should be aware of. First off, video cameras that shoot in 4K aren’t cheap, and projectors that show videos in 4K are typically the size of a small refrigerator. And, as we mentioned, watching these videos on YouTube will require super-fast broadband.
Now, let's discuss, when are cheap 4K encoders going to be available? What hardware is required in the camcorder to encode that resolution effectively (and not also use up too much bandwidth in its compression). How expensive are the 4K decoders really?
Is 4K support something that could come with the upcoming ARM Cortex A9 processors?
I would think that this could be a nice challenge for ARM processor providers to work towards. They have now reached 1080p playback for a while already, even though it only really comes with ARM Cortex A9 to small low power consumer devices. Media streamers though have done 1080p playback for a few years already. I filmed the first 1080p KiSS Technology players at CeBIT 2004:
With Moore's law, doubling of playback processing every 18 months, 4K decoders should have been ready since the second half of 2008 already, and in Set-top-box devices that shouldn't cost more than the KiSS Technology DP-600 shown in 2004, less than $300 today? Perhaps next year we will be able to see Google TV boxes with 4K and Youtube 4K streaming support on $2K 65" 4K LCD HDTVs or $1K 4K projectors?