Thursday, January 1, 2009

Prediction QA department

In archiving all my posts from last year, I was reminded of the accurate (and not so accurate) predictions from last year.

For 2009, one of my resolutions has to be to stop making iPhone predictions. In 2008, I repeated rumors that Flash was coming Real Soon Now; it‘s not here. In May 2007, I doubted Apple would sell 10 million iPhones in 2009 because of the AT&T exclusive, but of course that was wrong. (At least I was more accurate in my iPhone assessment than the CTO of Motorola, who is now CTO of Cisco).

A few other postings hit closer to the mark. In April, I noted the moral hazard of the government bailing out troubled banks. Throughout the year, I noted how Web 2.0 business models are fundamentally flawed and Yahoo was foolish and/or arrogant to turn down Microsoft’s money

Still other things don’t seem to change:

  • Google is battling Microsoft and Nokia for Total World Domination
  • Sun, Sprint and Motorola are in trouble,
  • free municipal Wi-Fi is dead,
  • paid Wi-Fi hotspots are dying even quicker than newspapers.
A few old patterns remain relevant: commoditization drives consumer decisions (or at least those of Americans) and most major acquisitions subtract value for shareholders.

Some issues from last year that remain unresolved:
  • The love-hate relationship of content owners with YouTube: it offers unmatched reach, but negligible revenue.
  • What impact will Google’s gPhone/Android/OHA initiative on the industry.
  • How will industry deal with patent trolls?
On a more serious note, is Steve Jobs really dying?

One prediction I will stand by: digital TV is coming, and analog TV will be gone by mid-February.

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