Prediction 8: No more predictions

When I started this gig in September, 1987 Ronald Reagan was President, there was no commercial Internet, Oprah had been on the air for less than a year, and a fairly powerful PC was an IBM PC AT running at 8 MHz. In September that will have been 25 years and I think 25 years is probably enough.

That’s 1300 consecutive weeks without a break. Honest to God, I haven’t missed a week since 1987. How many people can say that? With more than two million words in print, most of them still available online, it’s like having a time card the entire world can check. No cheating allowed.

I’m not saying exactly when the end will […]

By |January 5th, 2012|2012|211 Comments

Prediction #4: Motorola buys TiVO

What’s going to happen with TiVO?  The pioneering Digital Video Recorder company is still in business with around a million subscribers and it has lately been settling patent infringement cases with big companies like Echostar and — just this week — with AT&T, but the longer term prospects for the company are dim. Yes, they’ll likely rake in hundreds of million more in settlements from companies including Verizon, but at the same time their subscriber base is dwindling and a point will come when their hardware will simply disappear as the company loses manufacturing economies of scale. That is unless they want to start shipping each new unit with a $100 bill attached — something […]

By |January 3rd, 2012|2012|64 Comments

Prediction 3: Intel buys Qualcomm

The dominant theme in this set of predictions for 2012 is the mobile conversion as we abandon our desktops for mobile devices and the Cloud. Intel, while the dominant maker of microprocessors, doesn’t have a strong product position in mobile. Worse still, the company has a leadership vacuum and a culture that has not adapted well to change. Deep pockets aren’t enough when you don’t know where to spend the money and you are running out of time.  That’s Intel.

The company is desperate. It needs a mobile product line that doesn’t exist and there isn’t enough time left to develop one internally. For Intel the build or buy decision has already been made (buy, buy, buy) though I doubt that at […]

By |January 2nd, 2012|2012|71 Comments

Prediction #2: Amazon and Bezos supplant Apple and Jobs

If Apple gives up its position of industry leadership in 2012 the only company capable of assuming that role is Amazon.com. What other company is there?  In the PC space giants like HP and Dell are good followers, not leaders. Intel doesn’t even see itself in such a leadership role. Microsoft is having trouble just holding onto what it has already while Google is a herd of cats. Oracle is too enterprise-centric and everyone else is too darned small. That leaves Amazon.

This doesn’t mean Amazon is a perfect or even an easy replacement for Apple as a design leader because in many ways Amazon is so much less than what Apple has become. But in […]

By |January 2nd, 2012|2012|117 Comments

Prediction #1: A new CEO for Apple

2012 will be a year of great transition in the technology industry with the big changes coming more on the corporate level than in products. Sure, Windows 8 is on its way as are any number of new products, services, and whole companies, but the major story playing-out is who will lead the mobile transition?  Will Apple continue its resurgence even without Steve Jobs?  Will Microsoft retain its market share dominance and find a way to translate that into the mobile market as PCs continue to whither?  Will Google beat Facebook?  Will Facebook beat Google?  Will some tablet dethrone the iPad?  How will the industry look a year from today?  I think that every one […]

By |January 2nd, 2012|2012|92 Comments