Connected TVs done right - Apps instead of browser interface experience. Slick integration with companion devices that take on a role as the new learning remotes with program previewing, recommendations, content mashing and social interaction. DECE’s Ultraviolet standard prevails, making purchased content available on any device.
In Vehicle Cloud Services - your photos, your music and (maybe) your video from your personal cloud to the car. First versions offered are likely to be attempts that confuse walled gardens with competitive advantage. The second wave will see cloud domain experts offer services directly to the car (Dropbox, Google Music, Ubuntu One, Spotify, etc).
Music Industry Shift - A major music artist will drop a record label and sign directly with Google Music, initiating a trend where the direct-to-consumer platforms prevail on content distribution, while traditional labels transform their businesses around image rights, merchandizing and event organization (or flop).
Personal Cloud services go mainstream - Storing your music in the cloud and streaming it to mobile phones, accessing your files from any device, buying digital content and getting it delivered directly to your cloud, taking a photo from your mobile device and instantly see it on your home computer. Amazon, Microsoft Sky Drive, Dropbox, Ubuntu One, iCloud, SugarSync etc will be services that the majority of connected people won’t go without.
Teleporting - OK, wishful thinking…
Cloud services are hot. Google Docs making document creation and collaboration a cloud job, Dropbox raking in users and getting the cover of Forbes magazine, Apple getting the headlines even for a half baked iCloud, Spotify and Groovshark giving us access to any music for (almost) free and Turntable.fm getting mighty close to a truly social music experience. Most cloud services offer a combination of convenience, instant gratification and entertainment - but fewer have a behaviour changing impact on your daily life. Three cloud services have done exactly that for me recently:
Photo taking behavior. A subtle feature of the Ubuntu One Files app for Android phones made me exponentially increase the number of photos I take and toss my digital camera in an eBay listing. The app, which gives me access to all of my files, from all my computers, on my mobile phone - has an option to automatically upload any photo taken from my phone to the cloud and then automatically sync it with all of my computers. Goodbye tethering and other hassles around getting my photos from one device to another. Lytro better not come out without connecting to my personal cloud.
Music listening behavior. Spotify, Pandora and Last.fm have changed the way I discover music. But I also like to own a copy of my favorite music. And I also like to be able to access my entire music collection and playlists anytime, anywhere and on any device. But I’ve never been willing to take on the burden of copying my music from one device to the other and then recreating my playlists. I no longer have to thanks to services like Amazon CloudPlayer, Google Music and the less known (but first to nail this) Ubuntu One Music. My entire music collection is now synced to the cloud and available via online & offline streaming to my mobile devices. I can also buy music from one device, and it immediately shows up on my other devices, ready for listening.
Books reading behavior. OK, so I jumped late on the Kindle bandwagon. Not a huge fan of being restricted in the “where and how I can consume content I paid for” category, so I resisted for a while. Having my entire library in my pocket all the time, with immediate access to hundreds of thousands of books from the classics to the newest releases and instant delivery of any purchase, did me in. I still can’t walk past a bookstore or library without walking in - but anything I find of interest I wind up buying on my Kindle (sometimes while still standing in the bookstore). The exception - children books.
Disclaimer: I work for Canonical and on Ubuntu One, so it’s unsurprising that some of its services happen to solve my worst digital painpoints.