The Next Wave of Computing

“The Next Wave of Computing,” is concerned with the trend in mobile computing and related technical issues. The chapter first looks back into the evolution of the cell phone and PDA, as well as some handheld computers. Based on that, the chapter introduces the trend of the convergence between the cell phone and PDA, and between the cell phone and a mobile entertainment device.

A smart phone, as the “The Next Wave of Computing,” will likely be used as the universal mobile terminal alongside with the trend of convergence. Hence the chapter continues to identify a range of smart phone applications and services for consumers and businesses. The chapter moves forward beyond next-generation mobile devices to some fundamental challenges and opportunities that will turn the vision of mobile computing and pervasive computing into everyday reality.

Other wireless technologies, which either have already been commercialized, or still are in the intensive research and standardization stage, will be covered as well. Additionally, in order to explain how standards and politics play important roles in wireless industry, a summary of worldwide partnership groups, major competitors, and governmental policy makers is presented.

The next term is “Mobile Terminal Platforms,” focuses on the platforms for mobile terminal devices, including mobile embedded processors, memory and storage, extension interfaces, and display. On top of mobile hardware, a wide range of mobile software platforms are competing with each other. These mobile platforms are, to name a few, Symbian, Palm OS, Microsoft Windows Mobile, and embedded Linux, as well as middleware runtime such as J2ME and BREW. An overview of each competing operating system and corresponding software development platform is presented. The chapter also introduces various software emulators of those platforms and mobile markup languages.

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