Robert X. Cringely, the pen name for tech journalist Mark Stephens, recently blogged about a future of computing where smartphones replace desktop computers. That future began with the launch of iOS 7 and the iPhone 5s, a device as powerful as some laptops that also enables Bluetooth connectivity.
In fact, he wrote, a move away from desktop to mobile technology is part of Apple’s strategy.
“Here’s what I expect we’ll see,” Cringely said. “Go to your desk at work and, using Bluetooth and AirPlay, the iPhone 5s or 6 in your pocket will automatically link to your keyboard, mouse, and display. Processing and storage will be in your pocket and, to some extent, in the cloud. Your desktop will require only a generic display, keyboard, mouse, and some sort of AirPlay device, possibly an Apple TV that looks a lot like a Google ChromeCast.”
If Cringely is correct, it could also mean more big changes in education, according to Joshua Kim in his technology blog for Inside Higher Education. Replacing desktop computers with mobile devices would allow learning platforms to be merged into mobile apps that could be updated regularly.
“A desktop-replacement mobile device would enable us to bundle e-learning content with the e-learning platform,” Kim wrote. “All curricular materials could be delivered to the mobile device, synced to the cloud, and designed to work seamlessly with the mobile learning tools.”