Three things are happening in the future of gadgets, two I will cover here. By far the greatest evolution in personal technology tools (gadgets: also including phones etc) is convergence. Convergence is the tendency for different technological systems to evolve towards performing similar tasks.
The mobile phone is a convergence of the telephone and computing.
Google news is a convergence of print media, telephony and computing.
Television is a convergence of radio communications and image capture.
These are exciting times. The second is walls coming down. The middle man is being removed by the explosion of the Internet. Wikileaks is not an unexpected phenomena: wikileaks is the middleman of government being removed. iTunes is not an unexpected phenomena: it is the middleman of the record label being removed. Netflicks is not an unexpected phenomena it is the middleman of the networks being removed. Openeducation is not an unexpected phenomena it is the middleman of universities being removed.
In a nutshell the scarcity based economics and business models of education and pretty much any industry are being replaced by the abundance economy of the internet. Jeff Jarvis writes “So stop selling scarcity. Scarcity has no value. Results and efficiency do”. On the Internet everything is abundant.
I could go on: books (scarce) & publishing (expensive) become blogs (abundant) and wordpress (free). And so on.
When it comes to your mobile phone or telecommunications data plan or any other gadget for that matter: think convergence and think abundance over scarcity, and you’ll do well.
For God’s sake dont buy a landline!