Smartphones are computers?

27 Apr 2007 - 12:41pm
7 years ago
10 replies
1188 reads
Morten Hjerde
2007

Hi list!

We tend to believe that people has some sort of mental "scale" from
phones to computers. Something like this:

Basic phone > Feature phone > Smartphone > PDA/UMPC> Laptop PC > Desktop
PC

It seems logical to put all the "phones" in one category and the "computers"
in one category. However my working theory is that "normal people" actually
consider smartphones to be computers. This has some serious design
implications. (And leads to disaster when someone walks into a store to buy
a phone and comes out with a smartphone.)

The mental model for a mobile phone is a device that enables you to
communicate with another person. The phone is an _intermediary_ between you
and that other person. A computer however, is a device that enables you to
"get work done". In this case you either get work done on the device itself,
or the device is a satellite to the "real computer".
This is reflected in the phone interaction style. Basic phones and feature
phones has a default "idle" mode where the only thing you can do is to dial
a number (or hit the mode switch). A smartphone does not have an idle
screen. It has a screen full of active icons and commands that lets you do
"computer stuff".

So, my question to the list is: Do you agree? Do people consider smartphones
to be computers?

Glossary:
A basic phone has only voice and SMS capabilities.
Example: <http://direct.motorola.com/hellomoto/motofone/>

A feature phone has camera, mp3 player, MMS, etc, etc.
Example: *<*
http://www.mobiletracker.net/archives/2005/03/01/Sony-Ericsson-W800i>

A smartphone has "business apps" like email and calendar sync, can display
Excel and Word documents etc. It also runs some sort of "open" OS.
Example: <http://www.engadget.com/2006/10/25/t-mobile-dash-now-available/<http://www.engadget.com/2006/10/25/t-mobile-dash-now-available/>
>

A PDA or UMPC (Ultra portable PC) is a tiny tiny PC (without voice).
Example: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Umpc

Morten

Comments

27 Apr 2007 - 12:55pm
Ari
2006

well...they are computers (of a sort) as they have one or more CPUs and DSPs
to handle various system functions from signal processing to screen updates.

even basic cell phones run a rudimentary OS that handles everything from
address books, to ringtone selection to games or other apps. smartphones are
even more capable.

so, i'd say they're very much computers - just limited ones. in most cases,
they're about as powerful as an 8bit or very early 16bit computer of 1985
vintage.

Ari

On 4/27/07, Morten Hjerde <mhjerde at gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Hi list!
>
> We tend to believe that people has some sort of mental "scale" from
> phones to computers. Something like this:
>
> Basic phone > Feature phone > Smartphone > PDA/UMPC> Laptop PC > Desktop
> PC
>
> It seems logical to put all the "phones" in one category and the
> "computers"
> in one category. However my working theory is that "normal people"
> actually
> consider smartphones to be computers. This has some serious design
> implications. (And leads to disaster when someone walks into a store to
> buy
> a phone and comes out with a smartphone.)
>
> The mental model for a mobile phone is a device that enables you to
> communicate with another person. The phone is an _intermediary_ between
> you
> and that other person. A computer however, is a device that enables you to
> "get work done". In this case you either get work done on the device
> itself,
> or the device is a satellite to the "real computer".
> This is reflected in the phone interaction style. Basic phones and feature
> phones has a default "idle" mode where the only thing you can do is to
> dial
> a number (or hit the mode switch). A smartphone does not have an idle
> screen. It has a screen full of active icons and commands that lets you do
> "computer stuff".
>
> So, my question to the list is: Do you agree? Do people consider
> smartphones
> to be computers?
>
> Glossary:
> A basic phone has only voice and SMS capabilities.
> Example: <http://direct.motorola.com/hellomoto/motofone/>
>
> A feature phone has camera, mp3 player, MMS, etc, etc.
> Example: *<*
> http://www.mobiletracker.net/archives/2005/03/01/Sony-Ericsson-W800i>
>
> A smartphone has "business apps" like email and calendar sync, can display
> Excel and Word documents etc. It also runs some sort of "open" OS.
> Example: <http://www.engadget.com/2006/10/25/t-mobile-dash-now-available/<
> http://www.engadget.com/2006/10/25/t-mobile-dash-now-available/>
> >
>
> A PDA or UMPC (Ultra portable PC) is a tiny tiny PC (without voice).
> Example: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Umpc
>
> Morten
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> List Guidelines ............ http://listguide.ixda.org/
> List Help .................. http://listhelp.ixda.org/
> (Un)Subscription Options ... http://subscription-options.ixda.org/
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> Resource Library ........... http://resources.ixda.org
>

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------
VP, Product
TargetSpot, Inc.
646-250-3605

27 Apr 2007 - 1:12pm
Dave Malouf
2005

I think i disagree.

first, you assertion that PDAs and UMPCs don't have voice is off b/c
even a desktop PC and laptop have voice through VOIP. VOIP is actually
on almost all form factors even those with direct cell WAN
capabilities.

A Basic phone can also have email through the browser which is quite
common w/o other features, which means that if I have a T9 keyboard
(which is necessary for SMS) then I got email, calendar, etc. through
Y! Mobile. Before I went Smartphone w/ my QWERTY Treo I used my
clamshell samsung and it didn't have a camera or MMS.

but let's put this aside for a moment b/c I don't even think breaking
apart your gradient really changes the point of your question which is
if I understand you is trying to attempt to find that "moment" when a
user understands the device they are using to be "not a phone" any
longer.

I think this is flawed because I don't think they ever stop thinking
of it as a phone. My Treo is a phone first and then a messaging device
2nd and then a PIM satellite and finally a camera about 7 or 8. For
others who own a treo their mental model might order things slightly
differently as I know many Treo owners who don't have unlimited
internet so messaging is not as widely used, but they take a lot more
pictures with it.

I think this distinction between computer and phone to me is a false
dichotomy and actually is not the axis of the mental model I think you
are trying to go after. To me it is about proximity and intimacy.
Mobile phones are very close and very intimate devices. they are
extensions of fashion and style of the holder much more so than a
laptop and definitely a desktop. They are often worn, or are visible
when being used in such a way as to connect more directly to the user.

further while the limitations of what you can do on any device along
the spectrum of devices is evolving to become inconsequential, what
you would choose to do on it when you can do it is probably not
changing as rapidly. form factor and persistent physical close
proximity relate to these decision points. Further as the vast
differences in culture between say Korea/Japan and the US demonstrates
and how each uses mobile devices of any variety demonstrates that
there are intangible obstacles preventing specific types of use of
devices embedded in the culture. I.e. the US is very privacy centric
and this doesn't play out the same way in Korea or Japan.

Anyway, to me it isn't about object definition but about use
definition. The very terms phone and computer speak more to task types
than they do to device types in this day and age. I pick up my
laptop's headset and make a phone call over skype and I pick up my
RAZR to surf the net, google, Vindigo, and compose email.

-- dave

On 4/27/07, Morten Hjerde <mhjerde at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi list!
>
> We tend to believe that people has some sort of mental "scale" from
> phones to computers. Something like this:
>
> Basic phone > Feature phone > Smartphone > PDA/UMPC> Laptop PC > Desktop
> PC
>
> It seems logical to put all the "phones" in one category and the "computers"
> in one category. However my working theory is that "normal people" actually
> consider smartphones to be computers. This has some serious design
> implications. (And leads to disaster when someone walks into a store to buy
> a phone and comes out with a smartphone.)
>
> The mental model for a mobile phone is a device that enables you to
> communicate with another person. The phone is an _intermediary_ between you
> and that other person. A computer however, is a device that enables you to
> "get work done". In this case you either get work done on the device itself,
> or the device is a satellite to the "real computer".
> This is reflected in the phone interaction style. Basic phones and feature
> phones has a default "idle" mode where the only thing you can do is to dial
> a number (or hit the mode switch). A smartphone does not have an idle
> screen. It has a screen full of active icons and commands that lets you do
> "computer stuff".
>
> So, my question to the list is: Do you agree? Do people consider smartphones
> to be computers?
>
> Glossary:
> A basic phone has only voice and SMS capabilities.
> Example: <http://direct.motorola.com/hellomoto/motofone/>
>
> A feature phone has camera, mp3 player, MMS, etc, etc.
> Example: *<*
> http://www.mobiletracker.net/archives/2005/03/01/Sony-Ericsson-W800i>
>
> A smartphone has "business apps" like email and calendar sync, can display
> Excel and Word documents etc. It also runs some sort of "open" OS.
> Example: <http://www.engadget.com/2006/10/25/t-mobile-dash-now-available/<http://www.engadget.com/2006/10/25/t-mobile-dash-now-available/>
> >
>
> A PDA or UMPC (Ultra portable PC) is a tiny tiny PC (without voice).
> Example: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Umpc
>
> Morten
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> List Guidelines ............ http://listguide.ixda.org/
> List Help .................. http://listhelp.ixda.org/
> (Un)Subscription Options ... http://subscription-options.ixda.org/
> Announcements List ......... http://subscribe-announce.ixda.org/
> Questions .................. lists at ixda.org
> Home ....................... http://ixda.org/
> Resource Library ........... http://resources.ixda.org
>

--
David Malouf
http://synapticburn.com/
http://ixda.org/
http://motorola.com/

28 Apr 2007 - 4:00pm
Morten Hjerde
2007

I guess that what I'm trying is to get my head around where this thing is
going.

I know that you can do VOIP from a laptop and read webmail from the most
basic phones. But I don't think most people think like that.

In mature markets people are on their 5th phone now. The penetration is
north of 100% and we are all repeat buyers. The most successful phones are
feature phones where the extra feature we are buying are either a camera or
an mp3 player.
Smartphones is 6,3% of all phones sold worldwide. I believe Basic Phones are
around 15%. So the remaining 80% is Feature Phones.

The consumers has moved up from basic phones to feature phones, but they are
not moving into smartphones. What are stopping them? When they go into a
store to purchase a phone, do they spot the computerness of "computer
phones" and say no thanks? Its not a price issue.

Nokia is trying to move their symbian phones into the feature phone segment.
Symbian is their "Smartphone OS". On one hand I think this is great because
it gives those of us who make phone software a better platform. We can make
applications that integrate better with the phone. On the other hand the
average consumer don't buy these smartphones.

According to Barry Schwartz' Paradox of Choice theory people should flock to
the smartphones because they have the most features. But maybe people have
become phone experts and they know what they want? According to the Paradox
of Choice theory people who know what they want delight in having many
alternatives to choose from. They can pick the choice that is exactly right
from them.

And where did the ringtones, the logos and the custom phone covers go? In
this part of the woods, this form of personalisation has almost completely
disappeared. Is it because everybody used to have the same Nokia 3210 and
3310 phone models? Now there are a hundred models to choose from so people
who have a need to express their individuality do not have to pimp their
phone.

Or have people stopped loving their phones? The amount of customer
complaints has certainly risen, but its hard to know it this stems from
usability or hardware quality issues. I know people complain most about
Smartphones.

OK, as you probably can tell, I'm struggling here. I guess that what I'm
thinking is that for the next generation of "smart phones" to success, they
need to loose their "computerness". They have to be smart, buy they can't
look and feel like small and hard-to-use computers.

Morten

On 4/27/07, David Malouf <dave.ixd at gmail.com> wrote:
>
> I think i disagree.
>
> first, you assertion that PDAs and UMPCs don't have voice is off b/c
> even a desktop PC and laptop have voice through VOIP. VOIP is actually
> on almost all form factors even those with direct cell WAN
> capabilities.
>
>

28 Apr 2007 - 4:17pm
Jack L. Moffett
2005

On Apr 28, 2007, at 5:00 PM, Morten Hjerde wrote:

> OK, as you probably can tell, I'm struggling here. I guess that
> what I'm
> thinking is that for the next generation of "smart phones" to
> success, they
> need to loose their "computerness". They have to be smart, buy they
> can't
> look and feel like small and hard-to-use computers.

In a word: iPhone.

Jack L. Moffett
Interaction Designer
inmedius
412.459.0310 x219
http://www.inmedius.com

First, recognize that the ‘right’ requirements
are in principle unknowable by users, customers
and designers at the start.

Devise the design process, and the formal
agreement between designers and customers and users,
to be sensitive to what is learnt by any of the
parties as the design evolves.

- J.C. Jones

28 Apr 2007 - 5:57pm
Oleh Kovalchuke
2006

Cell phones have become a commodity (one indicator is the penetration north
of 100%, another is lack of personalization - you do not buy custom covers
and 'ding' tones for your microwave, either). Hence "...they can't look and
feel like small and hard-to-use computers."

"Smart phones" are not "phones" and should be marketed for what they will be
- small task facilitators (not computers).

--
Oleh Kovalchuke
Interaction Design is Design of Time
http://www.tangospring.com/IxDtopicWhatIsInteractionDesign.htm

On 4/28/07, Morten Hjerde <mhjerde at gmail.com> wrote:
>
> I guess that what I'm trying is to get my head around where this thing is
> going.
>
> I know that you can do VOIP from a laptop and read webmail from the most
> basic phones. But I don't think most people think like that.
>
> In mature markets people are on their 5th phone now. The penetration is
> north of 100% and we are all repeat buyers. The most successful phones are
>
> feature phones where the extra feature we are buying are either a camera
> or
> an mp3 player.
> Smartphones is 6,3% of all phones sold worldwide. I believe Basic Phones
> are
> around 15%. So the remaining 80% is Feature Phones.
>
> The consumers has moved up from basic phones to feature phones, but they
> are
> not moving into smartphones. What are stopping them? When they go into a
> store to purchase a phone, do they spot the computerness of "computer
> phones" and say no thanks? Its not a price issue.
>
> Nokia is trying to move their symbian phones into the feature phone
> segment.
> Symbian is their "Smartphone OS". On one hand I think this is great
> because
> it gives those of us who make phone software a better platform. We can
> make
> applications that integrate better with the phone. On the other hand the
> average consumer don't buy these smartphones.
>
> According to Barry Schwartz' Paradox of Choice theory people should flock
> to
> the smartphones because they have the most features. But maybe people have
> become phone experts and they know what they want? According to the
> Paradox
> of Choice theory people who know what they want delight in having many
> alternatives to choose from. They can pick the choice that is exactly
> right
> from them.
>
> And where did the ringtones, the logos and the custom phone covers go? In
> this part of the woods, this form of personalisation has almost completely
>
> disappeared. Is it because everybody used to have the same Nokia 3210 and
> 3310 phone models? Now there are a hundred models to choose from so people
> who have a need to express their individuality do not have to pimp their
> phone.
>
> Or have people stopped loving their phones? The amount of customer
> complaints has certainly risen, but its hard to know it this stems from
> usability or hardware quality issues. I know people complain most about
> Smartphones.
>
> OK, as you probably can tell, I'm struggling here. I guess that what I'm
> thinking is that for the next generation of "smart phones" to success,
> they
> need to loose their "computerness". They have to be smart, buy they can't
> look and feel like small and hard-to-use computers.
>
> Morten
>
>
>
> On 4/27/07, David Malouf <dave.ixd at gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > I think i disagree.
> >
> > first, you assertion that PDAs and UMPCs don't have voice is off b/c
> > even a desktop PC and laptop have voice through VOIP. VOIP is actually
> > on almost all form factors even those with direct cell WAN
> > capabilities.
> >
> >
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
> List Guidelines ............ http://listguide.ixda.org/
> List Help .................. http://listhelp.ixda.org/
> (Un)Subscription Options ... http://subscription-options.ixda.org/
> Announcements List ......... http://subscribe-announce.ixda.org/
> Questions .................. lists at ixda.org
> Home ....................... http://ixda.org/
> Resource Library ........... http://resources.ixda.org
>

28 Apr 2007 - 6:09pm
Morten Hjerde
2007

I think a device like the recently launched Nokia N95 marks the end of an
era. It might very well be the most technologically advanced piece of
consumer electronics ever seen on this planet. It certainly dwarfs the
iPhone. Is there anything the N95 can't do? Its certainly represents a very
mature technology. But I don't think the current interaction style can carry
mobiles like the N95 much further.

The interesting thing about the iPhone is that the device goes off on a
tangent to traditional phone manufacturer thinking. It has a
direct-manipulation interface. (In that regard you could probably argue that
the iPhone if _more_ computer-like that a traditional phone...) Direct
manipulation fluid interfaces may very well represent the future direction
of mainstream phones.

Sadly, it looks like the first iPhone will be a closed platform. But other
devices will come along, I hope.

Morten

On 4/28/07, Jack Moffett <jmoffett at inmedius.com> wrote:
>
>
> On Apr 28, 2007, at 5:00 PM, Morten Hjerde wrote:
>
> > OK, as you probably can tell, I'm struggling here. I guess that
> > what I'm
> > thinking is that for the next generation of "smart phones" to
> > success, they
> > need to loose their "computerness". They have to be smart, buy they
> > can't
> > look and feel like small and hard-to-use computers.
>
> In a word: iPhone.
> - J.C. Jones
>
>

28 Apr 2007 - 6:40pm
Mark Schraad
2006

I believe that part of the problem with the smart phone is it
requires the learning of yet another operating system with new
conventions. It appears at the moment that the smart phone does not
appeal to any other than the most motivated - either by technology or
work related tasks. I have tried a couple and though I fit into both
of those categories, I now have the simplest of RAZR phones and am
fairly content. For my own case, I would love a smart phone that
would facilitate the few task I need on the fly such as note taking,
email, simple web browsing, calendars, and presentation of materials
on a projector. I am hoping that the iPhone is just this... an
extension of my computer. Lugging my laptop to meetings and on a
plane works for now... but is hardly pocket convenient. The last
thing I need is another small object to carry along with my wallet,
keys sunglasses, etc. That the iPhone may be an extension of my
computing... with maybe a similar OS and applications bodes well.

Moving this functionality to yet another set of skills will and has
been a hurdle. If apple can avoid that hurdle by not forcing me to
change the behaviors inherent in those tasks it will likely find
success, and further re-enforce its computing platform.

The recent issue of the economist has some great material on the
future and direction of mobile and wireless. It looks to be a pretty
exciting time for mobile. I know that motorola has a wealth of
valuable qualitative research in mobile uses (as I am sure other
companies in the field probably do). I only hope that the company
gets its executive act together soon enough that it becomes valuable
research.

Mark

On Apr 28, 2007, at 7:09 PM, Morten Hjerde wrote:

> I think a device like the recently launched Nokia N95 marks the end
> of an
> era. It might very well be the most technologically advanced piece of
> consumer electronics ever seen on this planet. It certainly dwarfs the
> iPhone. Is there anything the N95 can't do? Its certainly
> represents a very
> mature technology. But I don't think the current interaction style
> can carry
> mobiles like the N95 much further.
>
> The interesting thing about the iPhone is that the device goes off
> on a
> tangent to traditional phone manufacturer thinking. It has a
> direct-manipulation interface. (In that regard you could probably
> argue that
> the iPhone if _more_ computer-like that a traditional phone...) Direct
> manipulation fluid interfaces may very well represent the future
> direction
> of mainstream phones.
>
> Sadly, it looks like the first iPhone will be a closed platform.
> But other
> devices will come along, I hope.
>
> Morten
>
>
> On 4/28/07, Jack Moffett <jmoffett at inmedius.com> wrote:
>>
>>
>> On Apr 28, 2007, at 5:00 PM, Morten Hjerde wrote:
>>
>>> OK, as you probably can tell, I'm struggling here. I guess that
>>> what I'm
>>> thinking is that for the next generation of "smart phones" to
>>> success, they
>>> need to loose their "computerness". They have to be smart, buy they
>>> can't
>>> look and feel like small and hard-to-use computers.
>>
>> In a word: iPhone.
>> - J.C. Jones

29 Apr 2007 - 4:55am
dszuc
2005

"The very terms phone and computer speak more to task types than they do to
device types in this day and age."

- Yes!That's the challenge for mobile manufacturers - how to make a device
that really meets the lifestyle of said end user. Also how to make it work
with the Operators (and how flexible that are willing to be)

For YOUTH it may be more around feeling connected, knowing where my friends
are, blogging, photos, knowing the cool hangouts close by.

For BUSINESS folks it may be more around access to email, finding business
contacts, good call quality, ability to carry presentations, conference
calling etc

Be interesting to watch some of the Web 2.0 social implications impact both
phone design and services.

See:
http://www.informationweek.com/blog/main/archives/2007/04/take_5_the_evol.ht
ml (good reading)

Exciting times ahead!

Rgds,

Daniel Szuc
Principal Usability Consultant
Apogee Usability Asia Ltd
www.apogeehk.com
'Usability in Asia'

The Usability Kit - http://www.theusabilitykit.com

-----Original Message-----
From: discuss-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
[mailto:discuss-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com] On Behalf Of David
Malouf
Sent: Saturday, April 28, 2007 2:12 AM
To: discuss at ixda.org
Subject: Re: [IxDA Discuss] Smartphones are computers?

I think i disagree.

first, you assertion that PDAs and UMPCs don't have voice is off b/c even a
desktop PC and laptop have voice through VOIP. VOIP is actually on almost
all form factors even those with direct cell WAN capabilities.

A Basic phone can also have email through the browser which is quite common
w/o other features, which means that if I have a T9 keyboard (which is
necessary for SMS) then I got email, calendar, etc. through Y! Mobile.
Before I went Smartphone w/ my QWERTY Treo I used my clamshell samsung and
it didn't have a camera or MMS.

but let's put this aside for a moment b/c I don't even think breaking apart
your gradient really changes the point of your question which is if I
understand you is trying to attempt to find that "moment" when a user
understands the device they are using to be "not a phone" any longer.

I think this is flawed because I don't think they ever stop thinking of it
as a phone. My Treo is a phone first and then a messaging device 2nd and
then a PIM satellite and finally a camera about 7 or 8. For others who own a
treo their mental model might order things slightly differently as I know
many Treo owners who don't have unlimited internet so messaging is not as
widely used, but they take a lot more pictures with it.

I think this distinction between computer and phone to me is a false
dichotomy and actually is not the axis of the mental model I think you are
trying to go after. To me it is about proximity and intimacy. Mobile phones
are very close and very intimate devices. they are extensions of fashion and
style of the holder much more so than a laptop and definitely a desktop.
They are often worn, or are visible when being used in such a way as to
connect more directly to the user.

further while the limitations of what you can do on any device along the
spectrum of devices is evolving to become inconsequential, what you would
choose to do on it when you can do it is probably not changing as rapidly.
form factor and persistent physical close proximity relate to these decision
points. Further as the vast differences in culture between say Korea/Japan
and the US demonstrates and how each uses mobile devices of any variety
demonstrates that there are intangible obstacles preventing specific types
of use of devices embedded in the culture. I.e. the US is very privacy
centric and this doesn't play out the same way in Korea or Japan.

Anyway, to me it isn't about object definition but about use definition. The
very terms phone and computer speak more to task types than they do to
device types in this day and age. I pick up my laptop's headset and make a
phone call over skype and I pick up my RAZR to surf the net, google,
Vindigo, and compose email.

-- dave

On 4/27/07, Morten Hjerde <mhjerde at gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi list!
>
> We tend to believe that people has some sort of mental "scale" from
> phones to computers. Something like this:
>
> Basic phone > Feature phone > Smartphone > PDA/UMPC> Laptop PC >
> Desktop PC
>
> It seems logical to put all the "phones" in one category and the
> "computers" in one category. However my working theory is that "normal
> people" actually consider smartphones to be computers. This has some
> serious design implications. (And leads to disaster when someone walks
> into a store to buy a phone and comes out with a smartphone.)
>
> The mental model for a mobile phone is a device that enables you to
> communicate with another person. The phone is an _intermediary_
> between you and that other person. A computer however, is a device
> that enables you to "get work done". In this case you either get work
> done on the device itself, or the device is a satellite to the "real
> computer". This is reflected in the phone interaction style. Basic
> phones and feature phones has a default "idle" mode where the only
> thing you can do is to dial a number (or hit the mode switch). A
> smartphone does not have an idle screen. It has a screen full of
> active icons and commands that lets you do "computer stuff".
>
> So, my question to the list is: Do you agree? Do people consider
> smartphones to be computers?
>
> Glossary:
> A basic phone has only voice and SMS capabilities.
> Example: <http://direct.motorola.com/hellomoto/motofone/>
>
> A feature phone has camera, mp3 player, MMS, etc, etc.
> Example: *<*
> http://www.mobiletracker.net/archives/2005/03/01/Sony-Ericsson-W800i>
>
> A smartphone has "business apps" like email and calendar sync, can
> display Excel and Word documents etc. It also runs some sort of "open"
> OS.
> Example:
<http://www.engadget.com/2006/10/25/t-mobile-dash-now-available/<http://www.
engadget.com/2006/10/25/t-mobile-dash-now-available/>
> >
>
> A PDA or UMPC (Ultra portable PC) is a tiny tiny PC (without voice).
> Example: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Umpc
>
> Morten
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
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--
David Malouf
http://synapticburn.com/
http://ixda.org/
http://motorola.com/
________________________________________________________________
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29 Apr 2007 - 8:38pm
Trip O'Dell
2007

What is holding smartphones back?
- No way to actually expand on the base capabilities of the core
device - external monitors, real time networking or remote desktop
access from a laptop or desktop (I'm thinking about something akin to
teleport for mac)

- closed networks that don't allow for users to develop the life
hacks that will actually make the device useful - this is especially
important - network effects occur organically and add value in ways
that can't be anticipated in a boardroom. Without the ability to
easily get "under the hood" on these devices people can't optimize
the interface for the ways they want to use it.

- Conventional thinking for the interface design. I find it ironic
that so many manufactures want to tack on a touch screen or QWERTY
keyboard and call it a day. QWERTY was a standard developed for two-
handed typing on a large device and touch screens limit the
interaction to a very small area of the device. Why does the
interface even need to be physically part of the device? Most of the
functionality that makes a computer a useful tool is external to the
core machine. The monitor, printer, keyboard, mouse, router and even
the hard drive are all separate devices that are part of the same
system. Why can't cell phones/PDAs be the same way?

We're already making strides in that direction with bluetooth
headsets - why not with other parts of the system such as the user
interface, or screen? The smartphone then become a device who's
affordances can scale with a situation. I don't have to dig the
device out of my bag to answer a call, I check the caller ID on my
watch and can answer it with the push of a button. I can also dial
directly from my watch and scroll though my contacts by rotating the
face. All the audio is routed directly to the headset. Later I can
dock the device with a notepad sized screen to record meeting notes,
or attach a small keyboard to write a letter. The device shifts its
form and affordances based on the current user needs rather than
forcing the user to adjust their workflow to the limitations of the
device.

On Apr 29, 2007, at 4:55 AM, Daniel Szuc wrote:

> "The very terms phone and computer speak more to task types than
> they do to
> device types in this day and age."
>
> - Yes!That's the challenge for mobile manufacturers - how to make a
> device
> that really meets the lifestyle of said end user. Also how to make
> it work
> with the Operators (and how flexible that are willing to be)
>
> For YOUTH it may be more around feeling connected, knowing where my
> friends
> are, blogging, photos, knowing the cool hangouts close by.
>
> For BUSINESS folks it may be more around access to email, finding
> business
> contacts, good call quality, ability to carry presentations,
> conference
> calling etc
>
> Be interesting to watch some of the Web 2.0 social implications
> impact both
> phone design and services.
>
> See:
> http://www.informationweek.com/blog/main/archives/2007/04/
> take_5_the_evol.ht
> ml (good reading)
>
> Exciting times ahead!
>
> Rgds,
>
> Daniel Szuc
> Principal Usability Consultant
> Apogee Usability Asia Ltd
> www.apogeehk.com
> 'Usability in Asia'
>
> The Usability Kit - http://www.theusabilitykit.com
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: discuss-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com
> [mailto:discuss-bounces at lists.interactiondesigners.com] On Behalf
> Of David
> Malouf
> Sent: Saturday, April 28, 2007 2:12 AM
> To: discuss at ixda.org
> Subject: Re: [IxDA Discuss] Smartphones are computers?
>
>
> I think i disagree.
>
> first, you assertion that PDAs and UMPCs don't have voice is off b/
> c even a
> desktop PC and laptop have voice through VOIP. VOIP is actually on
> almost
> all form factors even those with direct cell WAN capabilities.
>
> A Basic phone can also have email through the browser which is
> quite common
> w/o other features, which means that if I have a T9 keyboard (which is
> necessary for SMS) then I got email, calendar, etc. through Y! Mobile.
> Before I went Smartphone w/ my QWERTY Treo I used my clamshell
> samsung and
> it didn't have a camera or MMS.
>
> but let's put this aside for a moment b/c I don't even think
> breaking apart
> your gradient really changes the point of your question which is if I
> understand you is trying to attempt to find that "moment" when a user
> understands the device they are using to be "not a phone" any longer.
>
> I think this is flawed because I don't think they ever stop
> thinking of it
> as a phone. My Treo is a phone first and then a messaging device
> 2nd and
> then a PIM satellite and finally a camera about 7 or 8. For others
> who own a
> treo their mental model might order things slightly differently as
> I know
> many Treo owners who don't have unlimited internet so messaging is
> not as
> widely used, but they take a lot more pictures with it.
>
> I think this distinction between computer and phone to me is a false
> dichotomy and actually is not the axis of the mental model I think
> you are
> trying to go after. To me it is about proximity and intimacy.
> Mobile phones
> are very close and very intimate devices. they are extensions of
> fashion and
> style of the holder much more so than a laptop and definitely a
> desktop.
> They are often worn, or are visible when being used in such a way
> as to
> connect more directly to the user.
>
> further while the limitations of what you can do on any device
> along the
> spectrum of devices is evolving to become inconsequential, what you
> would
> choose to do on it when you can do it is probably not changing as
> rapidly.
> form factor and persistent physical close proximity relate to these
> decision
> points. Further as the vast differences in culture between say
> Korea/Japan
> and the US demonstrates and how each uses mobile devices of any
> variety
> demonstrates that there are intangible obstacles preventing
> specific types
> of use of devices embedded in the culture. I.e. the US is very privacy
> centric and this doesn't play out the same way in Korea or Japan.
>
> Anyway, to me it isn't about object definition but about use
> definition. The
> very terms phone and computer speak more to task types than they do to
> device types in this day and age. I pick up my laptop's headset and
> make a
> phone call over skype and I pick up my RAZR to surf the net, google,
> Vindigo, and compose email.
>
> -- dave
>
> On 4/27/07, Morten Hjerde <mhjerde at gmail.com> wrote:
>> Hi list!
>>
>> We tend to believe that people has some sort of mental "scale" from
>> phones to computers. Something like this:
>>
>> Basic phone > Feature phone > Smartphone > PDA/UMPC> Laptop PC >
>> Desktop PC
>>
>> It seems logical to put all the "phones" in one category and the
>> "computers" in one category. However my working theory is that
>> "normal
>> people" actually consider smartphones to be computers. This has some
>> serious design implications. (And leads to disaster when someone
>> walks
>> into a store to buy a phone and comes out with a smartphone.)
>>
>> The mental model for a mobile phone is a device that enables you to
>> communicate with another person. The phone is an _intermediary_
>> between you and that other person. A computer however, is a device
>> that enables you to "get work done". In this case you either get work
>> done on the device itself, or the device is a satellite to the "real
>> computer". This is reflected in the phone interaction style. Basic
>> phones and feature phones has a default "idle" mode where the only
>> thing you can do is to dial a number (or hit the mode switch). A
>> smartphone does not have an idle screen. It has a screen full of
>> active icons and commands that lets you do "computer stuff".
>>
>> So, my question to the list is: Do you agree? Do people consider
>> smartphones to be computers?
>>
>> Glossary:
>> A basic phone has only voice and SMS capabilities.
>> Example: <http://direct.motorola.com/hellomoto/motofone/>
>>
>> A feature phone has camera, mp3 player, MMS, etc, etc.
>> Example: *<*
>> http://www.mobiletracker.net/archives/2005/03/01/Sony-Ericsson-W800i>
>>
>> A smartphone has "business apps" like email and calendar sync, can
>> display Excel and Word documents etc. It also runs some sort of
>> "open"
>> OS.
>> Example:
> <http://www.engadget.com/2006/10/25/t-mobile-dash-now-available/
> <http://www.
> engadget.com/2006/10/25/t-mobile-dash-now-available/>
>>>
>>
>> A PDA or UMPC (Ultra portable PC) is a tiny tiny PC (without voice).
>> Example: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Umpc
>>
>> Morten
>> ________________________________________________________________
>> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
>> To post to this list ....... discuss at ixda.org
>> List Guidelines ............ http://listguide.ixda.org/
>> List Help .................. http://listhelp.ixda.org/
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>> Home ....................... http://ixda.org/
>> Resource Library ........... http://resources.ixda.org
>>
>
>
> --
> David Malouf
> http://synapticburn.com/
> http://ixda.org/
> http://motorola.com/
> ________________________________________________________________
> Welcome to the Interaction Design Association (IxDA)!
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> ________________________________________________________________
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30 Apr 2007 - 12:01pm
Morten Hjerde
2007

>
> - closed networks that don't allow for users to develop the life
> hacks that will actually make the device useful - this is especially
> important - network effects occur organically and add value in ways
> that can't be anticipated in a boardroom. Without the ability to
> easily get "under the hood" on these devices people can't optimize
> the interface for the ways they want to use it.

Very good point. 3rd applications are not first class passengers on a mobile
phone. The main thing that makes a smartphone "smart" is that it
behaves like a computer. But its not not possible to make applications
that intergrates well.
You can't swap out the email reader or address book for a better one.

I would like to be able to add features to phones without having to put them
into some "application" that has to be
"installed" somewhere down in a folder system and "started" by the
user. Mobile phone widget hold some promise in this regard.

Morten

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