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#MWC13: It's All About the Network

I've got quite the laundry list of new mobile device technologies to evaluate at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona this coming week. The list is even larger than the one I wrote about while en route to CES in January.

But my number one priority at MWC won't be any of those cool new features for smartphones, tablets and PCs. First and foremost, I will be investigating alternatives for expanding wireless data capacity.

So why is a guy who makes a living analyzing mobile client technology trends paying such close attention to carrier deployment issues? It's simple: no one will use the cool new features if the wireless network doesn't have the capacity to support them. 

Read the entire column HERE


Why Seinfeld Won't Buy a Surface Pro (But Your Boss Might Buy One for You)


People who have monkeys for pets should just go ahead and have kids, Jerry Seinfeld years ago joked in a standup bit about pet ownership. "If you need a pet that can roller skate and smoke cigars, it's time to think about a family."

When you boil it down, that's why Microsoft's new Surface Pro won't rack up much in the way of sales. It's an awful lot of computer trapped inside the body of a tablet. Which means tradeoffs.

With apologies to Seinfeld, if you're thinking about Surface Pro ownership, then you're so close. Just go out and get a real computer.

Most consumers will do just that. Many enterprise buyers, however, will be ordering a few Surface Pro's. Click HERE to find out why. 


Model Years Can Help Lift PC Sales

In my last column, I offered PC vendors some advice on how to position Windows 8 systems. That's not a miracle cure for solving PC players' woes. All that will do is pry from the industry's hand the pistol it's using to shoot itself in the foot. PC vendors will need to do more if they want to re-inject excitement into their products and get their business back on a growth trajectory.

Here's the bottom line: PC vendors need to incorporate model years into their product positioning. You know, like the automobile makers do. 

Smartphones and tablets -- the devices that are eating the PC's lunch -- exploit the model-year concept. Suppliers leverage their annual rollouts to generate pull from consumers, and consumers respond. PC vendors, meanwhile, continue to manage new releases like it's 1999.

That's not entirely the OEMs' fault. But it is entirely their problem.

Implementing model years doesn't have to be that complicated. Click HERE to find out how.


PC Industry: Now What?

Early returns confirm what we already knew: that Windows 8's coming-out was no party. 

The problem: Windows 8 is being marketed as a touch-centric OS, and there aren't many touch-enabled systems available. 

The percentage of touch-enabled laptops that were shipped in the fourth quarter was miniscule -- less than 1%, according to Digitimes Research. That number is forecasted to grow only to about 10% in 2013. Which means that more disappointing sales are on the horizon.

As I see it, the PC ecosystem has two options if it wants a shot at salvaging 2013: 1) Find a way to reverse that 90:10 ratio, so that the vast majority of systems are touch-enabled, or 2) start marketing non-touch systems to end users.

Read the entire column HERE.


Must-See Trends at CES


 If you want to get the most out of CES, you have to peer around the big TVs and pimped-out automobiles. I'll be keeping an eye on a few key technology trends. They all have the potential to be the next big thing. But will they be? And if so, when?

Read the entire column HERE