By Harry McCracken | Friday, September 11, 2009 at 8:16 am
Musing about Motorola’s announcement of MotoBlur and the Cliq yesterday, ZDNet’s Sam Diaz says that the telephone is no longer the dominant feature in today’s smartphones:
Call these devices smartphones if you’d like – but increasingly, the phone part of the device is just another feature, another widget on the home page.
He’s right, of course. The transformation of phones into pocket computers began with the arrival of devices such as the earliest Treos, and is now complete. These things are pocket computers that can make phone calls. Calling them “phones” is a little like calling a PC a “word processor.”
Sam goes on to wonder whether we need to come up with a new name. He brings up “handheld,” but says it doesn’t feel quite right. Me, I’ve been advocating for awhile now that smartphones are PCs, and that they day isn’t long off when everybody will think of them as such, But I’m not arguing that we should start calling them PCs (which could stand for either personal computer or personal communicator). At least not yet. For now, I’m comfortable calling my phone a…phone.
Here’s a quick T-Poll–and if you have any nominations for new names for phones, leave ’em in the comments.