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Top 10 Tech Predictions for 2012

The year 2011 was a great year in the field of technology. We’ve seen a lot of new stuff and developments in the last 12 months. I’m sure 2012 will be even better and more exciting. Check out my top 10 tech predictions for 2012.

Some of them are a bit of a long shot while others I’m pretty confident about.

  • Apple will finally announce and release the iPhone 5. Sure ball.
  • Flagship smartphones will run on a dual-core 2.5GHz processor. A dual-core 1.5GHz could be the minimum clock speed for most while a dual-core 2.0GHz will be set as the median speed.
  • The storage industry will stabilize and HDD manufacturers will be able to ship out 5TB drives for desktop PCs, 2TB drives for laptops and 500GB for tablets (I’m thinking Western Digital will be the one to announce first). SSD will remain to be expensive for the most part.
  • Netbooks will finally come to an end and have to give way to a new breed of laptops. The current definition of netbooks is what’s preventing it to evolve (Atom, 1-2GB of RAM, 10.1-inch screens,etc). Newer ones will go the Macbook Air route to survive — something similar to the Aspire S3 with HDD at the 11 to 12 inch form factor. Price will be a deciding factor so it should be under Php25k.
  • Microsoft will buy Nokia for under $30 billion. Windows Phone 7 will challenge BB10, Android and iOS for a bigger piece of the pie. Windows 8 will help spread the Kool-Aid.
  • Mobile internet speeds in the Philippines will average at around 10Mbps. That means we’re gonna see widespread HSPA+ and possibly LTE roll-out in the second half of the year (Smart LTE comes to mind). At least, that’s what all the carriers will promise in big bold letters. DSL speeds will continue to languish and will not even reach 3Mbps on average.
  • Now that Sun Cellular is under the ownership of PLDT and Smart, a 3rd telco will likely emerge to add balance to the duopoly between Smart and Globe. PLDT/Smart’s 70% market share has gotten some people worried.
  • NFC (Near-Field Technology) will fail to get mass adoption especially with contactless payment systems. It will still be there and will be more common in handsets but might take a long while to be really used by many.
  • A Filipino tech start-up will be bought by Google. Their revenue model screams “it’s Google or bust”. If negotiations will not work out, they’d burn thru all the investor money and could go under.
  • We will finally get to see WiFi in the sky. It’s a long shot but it’s possible one of the big telcos and a major domestic airline will do a beta test on this later this year. Perhaps Cebu Pacific and Smart?

I’m crossing my fingers I’ll hit 50% with my predictions here but it sure is exciting if you just think about it.

Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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63 Responses

  1. benchmark says:

    Well i hope the network here in the Ph would stabilize…I mean no ” up to – up to” in their ads.

  2. Fleeb says:

    Which startup?

    As for the HDD, this is entirely possible as we already have 1GB per platter density HDD in production.

  3. MCast says:

    Here are my comments on the predictions above:

    -iPhone5, well this is obvious. But what will be the new features? What are the new game-changing stuff that Apple would like to pursue with its next iPhone iteration?

    -2.5GHz dual-core, I beg to differ. NVIDIA is working on Tegra 3 which features QUAD-core (think eeePAD Transformer Prime). Higher clock speeds are not the future. More cores are.

    -About SSD’s remaining expensive, again I beg to differ. While it will STILL be expensive for the general Philippine population, for the developed nations SSD’s are already becoming a viable option, economy-wise.

    -Netbooks, they will definitely die. Even for developing countries (like ours), tablets have become so popular. Netbooks will die a fast, brutal death — it will just disappear, in a technological instant.

    -Microsoft buying Nokia, while it may happen, is something I believe would be a STUPID move on Microsoft’s part. There will be NO benefits for Microsoft if this deal materializes. The WP7 partnership should suffice for now. This partnership is yet to bear fruit, so talks of a corporate takeover are not very sensible.

    -Mobile internet speeds are something of a marketing gimmick today. They NEVER deliver these promised speeds (or, in my case, they deliver these speeds during off-peak hours, like midnight ’til 6am). I don’t care if they promise 10Mbps or 100Mbps. If telcos cannot deliver on their promises, mobile broadband speeds are BS.

    -3rd telco rising, I believe this is highly unlikely. Running a telco business is EXPENSIVE. No, let’s not talk about running a telco business yet. BUILDING A TELCO BUSINESS IS EXPENSIVE. The towers, cables, licenses, etc. Unless this is, like, another San Miguel venture, this 3rd telco will not materialize.

    -NFC has only gained some sort of traction in Europe. Even in the US it has barely gained any adoption. So yes, NFC will not really take off just yet (or ever).

    -I am not aware of any Filipino tech start-ups so I will not comment on this one.

    -Airline WiFi is something local airline companies aren’t very keen on jumping into because, when comparing with international flights or even cross-American flights, the travel time for local flights or even flights across Asia (HK, SG, KL, BKK) are relatively shorter. While airline WiFi is still highly possible, it’s not something of a priority for our airline companies, I believe.

    • perci says:

      100% true.

    • jade says:

      Agree to your comments, mostly.

    • garz says:

      Yes, Tegra 3 is here but I think quad-core mobile devices will struggle to sell considering we don’t even have batteries that makes dual-core handsets last a day.

      Google buys Motorola. Microsoft buys Nokia. I can see the connection.

    • kolokoyme says:

      Great analysis! ^_^

    • budflick says:

      #9 – m.budflick.com . superstart up, i rely on donations to make the site run lol. i think filipino “social network” that runs on its own basecode wont make it. most if pinoy so called “social sites” are either integrated to FB or used a commercial software, which is not “lasang pinoy” in a sense. for me, if you say start up, as in start up that you created the codes, you burned your eyebrows, even if it appears like the competition. as long as its not commercially prepared and then branded as “proudly pinoy”

  4. Jazz says:

    Everyone would love to have cheap ultrabooks, but I doubt the manufacturers can get to that point soon, at least not this year. So, no, I don’t think the dirt-cheap netbook will be gone by the end of 2012.

  5. arvi says:

    Microsoft buying Nokia is the most ridiculous prediction on your list. Nokia is already keeping up to the competition with mango and as you might heard in blogosphere that there will be no more bb os rather Bbx will play the game. Just a thought, cheers!

  6. sylv3rblade says:

    SSDs are finally splitting up into two markets, enthusiast and mass consumption, with the latter giving more GB/$$$ in exchange for more advanced features like TRIM support, slower I/O speed, etc.

  7. memedroid says:

    for the start-up , my list are:
    1. Exist/G2iX/Morph Labs
    2. Orange & Bronze
    3. Novare ( not sure if this is 100% Pinoy)

  8. otepsphere says:

    Wow, nice prediction Yuga, I’m bit interesting to know what’s about this.. : “A Filipino tech start-up will be bought by Google. If that doesn’t work out, they might go under.”

    I have also prediction, Yuga might give me one of his gadget, hehehe but unfortunately 0% chance I think … ^_^

  9. Cipher says:

    Same here, I’m sorry but I strongly “object” to most of Abe’s predictions here. To my surprise, I have exactly the same ideas with MCast.

    #1 – iPhone5 – pretty d*rn obvious. the real question is when. there is a high probability of having it late fourth quarter of 2012 since Apple are now having a hard time hitting their usual one-iPhone model per 12 months (it took them 14-16 months to launch iPhone 4S from IP4).

    I predict :
    * new form factor (thinner than Motorola Droid Razr),
    * 12 megapixel camera (to match the revered 12megapixel of Nokia N8)
    * 4.3-inch retina display to match the “standard” Android smartphones
    * Improved battery
    * 2.0Ghz A5 processor
    * No more glass-built. Sturdier material to replace the fragile glass material
    * Fully-functional Siri
    * And as the “real” distinctive feature versus its predecessor IP4S, it will finally sport an “microSD support for up to 32GB” — note that they will use their own Apple-version of microSD to make them look “novel” (e.g. the invention of Thunderbolt) — with this they will limit iPhone 5 to 32GB max only

    #2 – 2.5Ghz?!? I dont think so. Especially now that its too easy to overclock Android smartphones. HTC has started developing multiple cores (quad?) since the launch of Sensation XE & XL. Others are catching up.

    #3 – SSDs – C’mon! This is Philippines! the probability for price drop for SSDs is (IMHO) pretty remote in our local market. We may find something cheaper ontine though…

    #4 Netbooks – are indeed doomed to die since the launch of iPad. And I bet Transformer Prime X (or whatever name they will come up for the new model of Transformer Prime) will be the new benchmark for tablets.

    Speaking of tablets, i predict Kindle Fire will still survive for the first two quarters but eventually die by Q3-Q4

    #5 – Microsoft buying Nokia — I dont think so. Nokia will somehow survive via Lumia models — but will eventually be killed and acquired by other phone manufacturers Q3 2013. So who will die come 2012? It’s RIM (Blackberry), which will be acquired by a top tier phone manufacturer or IT giant (Google, FB, Microsoft)

    #6 -Mobile internet speeds minimum of 10mbps?!? Yeah, right… probably as a marketing gimmick with tons of mouseprint in any disclaimers

    #7 -third telco rising — i dont think so. MVP has invested a lot lately — with TV5 and AksyonTV, plus the acquisition of Sun. And the latest, the rights to sell iPhone 4S which cost him nothing less than Php6.0 B. And there are rumors that he’s eyeing to buy GMA7 (which is close to impossible to be acquired by sheer pride) so he’ll be needing all the funds he can get. He invested (and risked) too much already. the SMART+SUN is already too close to monopolizing telco’s market share.

    #8 – NFCs — will be adopted, but not this year (2012). Probably 2014-2015 at least. It will take global adoption + expensive upgrades to many merchandising companies before it will be considered for adoption in the Philippines. Not that NFCs will be used only to high-end phones, and our country is a third-world country only (no offense) so its a big gamble to invest for upgrades for merchandising companies. Adoption will slowly be flet in US and Europe by the end of 2012..

    #9 – Pinoy startup — no idea (ikaw ba yan Yuga? hehe)

    #10 – Airline WiFi — refer to NFCs comments. Pretty big investment for local flights which has 45mins-one hour average flightime…

    My other predictions?

    * Nokia to sport “superphones” @ budget price (which is the upcoming trend, and one of the q3-q4 roadmap of Nokia, and one way of desperate move for Nokia to survive)

    * Bye bye Blackberry. Hello merging.. (like Motorola to Google)

    *Galaxy Nexus (Prime) to lose the spotlight as soon as (1) HTC, Samsung and Sony (minus Ericcson) integrated Ice Cream Sandwich

    *HTC to FINALLY sport new hardwares and better battery. will spearhead quad core era. Standardized over-the-ear Beats as audio bundle.

    *Samsung is too stubborn to use cheap-plastic back cover to retain slimness. Will launch too many models for niche markets. Will slowly lose avid customers due to late and selective upgrades to ICS and Jellybean. Will retain top-tier status because of budget models that will flood the market.

    *IPhone 5 to redeem itself and stole the quad-core fever by launching thinnest smartphone with 2.0Ghz dual core A5 (or higher) processor, highest display, picture,video quality, improved Siri, and expandable memory.

    * New versions of Motorola Droid Razr — now with user-replaceable battery but will still have the Kevlar at the removable back cover

    *Ultrabooks will flood the market

  10. jason says:

    According to WSJ, their Journal colleagues write that Nokia says reports of the Microsoft deal are “completely baseless.”

    Back in Febuary, Nokia’s CEO capitulated and agreed to make Microsoft’s smartphone operating system the standard for all the Nokia phones. Apple Outside had this smart take:

    “In Nokia, Microsoft now has an established, experienced, recognized OEM with one of its own men at the helm.”… (Nokia CEO Stephen Elop — he of the “Burning Platform” manifesto — used to be a Microsoft executive.)

    “There’s no question in my mind that the next generation of flagship Windows Phones will come from Nokia, and for that, Microsoft will have unprecedented influence over the hardware that runs its software.”

    So Nokia already has a Microsoft-minded guy at the helm, and all of its phones will run on Windows Phone 7. So why does Steve Ballmer need to buy Nokia at all?


  11. boy says:

    iphone 5? too soon

  12. Vic says:

    Artificial Intelligence will be more obvious in 2012. Credit cards, IDs, MRT cards will be put in our smart phones. No matter what will happen in the tech world in 2012, I just wish the consumers will be the ones who benefit the most.

  13. lawrence says:

    my take:

    – iphone 5 is not worth mentioning, unless it would bring another mobile revolution like what the original iphone did.

    – microsoft would never buy nokia. while they are need nokia for their smartphone department, nokia has another line of business that would not bring any benefits to microsoft, like the symbian, s40, dumbphones, etc. nokia is a big company that has mobile telephony at its core, MS can’t afford to manage it as it has other main LOBs to focus on.

    – netbooks will never die, or atleast for now, because they still have their target market which is the students and professors. tablets can never replace the office functionality and productivity of them. ultrabooks are too expensive for basic office task. though I agree that they might evolve into a more powerful breed of device, and yes price will be a deciding factor, so it will not be very far from what netbooks now are.

    – i dont see the sense of putting 2++ ghz into a mobile device that cant even maximize it.

  14. I think the Filipino start-up being referred to is Insync (Dropbox for Google docs) by our very own Terence Pua. Fingers crossed they will be acquired by Google this year :)


  15. japong says:

    iphone 5 will definitely come this year with a new design (should be) and probably ipad 3 and another story of an apple employee who has lost an iphone prototype (iphone 5) in a bar somewhere (he could be drunk again) and picked up by somebody and sold it to somebody (yuga should get hands on that prototype just like gizmodo did hehe..). Dual core smartphones are becoming standard for androids so speed will be the option and probably a quad core will emerge. Netbooks are already dying fast but still it will be a good option for people who are really on tight budget and just want a small laptop that could handle FB internet word stuff. Ultraportables will replace them but not the price unless ultraportables drops prices. And I want to add to yuga’s list that probably we will see Intel coming up with 8 core CPU…

    And don’t forget about the December 2012 end of the world predictions :D

  16. Vachira says:

    Don’t forget gamers like us… PS Vita is already being sold at Data Blitz, new game console like Nintendo Wuu and PS4 and etc.

  17. Anti Kimchi says:

    Pinoy start up= hahahahahaha. Good one!! A company that cheats and tells lies!!

  18. William C says:

    I thought the Startup is Yugatech. :) I predict that AOL will buy Yugatech and add to it’s stable of blogs (engadget, et al).

    My own predictions:

    Netbooks will survive, but no longer as netbooks since they will have CPU power comnparable to low end laptops.

    iOS will become the platform of choice for all gamers. PSP Vita nd the 3DS will be left to fight for the hardcore gamers. The 3DS will thrive in Japan but lags iOS in the US.

    Apple will finally launch a NEW low end iOS phone to combat Android.

    A new phone carrier is only possible if the new entry could get any bandwidth from the government. I think Liberty have some, but are they suited for mobile phones? Maybe NTC could force Smart to give up some of Sun’s bandwidth, in the same way the US government forces AT&T to give up T-Mobile’s (leading to the dissolution of the proposed merger).

    Samsung will become the No. 1 mobile phone maker.

    Nokia will fire Stephen Elop after Windows 7 Mobile proved a costly failure.

    Google will sell Motorola sans the patents.

    • garz says:

      iOS a choice for ALL gamers you say??? You even mentioned the word “hardcore.”

      PC gamers ARE THE hardcore gamers. I also doubt iOS will beat PS and Nintendo in mobile gaming. It’s just for phones..

      Know your facts, fanboy. lol

    • William C says:

      Reply to gar:

      I am no iOS fanboy, my phone is an Android. I am talking about handheld gaming, as I referred to the 3DS, Vita and iOS (Phone/touch). With iOS games at 0.99 (most games can be had for that price, some only at sales), why pay 3.99 for a twenty year old emulation of Tetris on the Gameboy. As I said, those who are into RPG or hardcore games will still flock to the 3DS or Vita, but for most, iOS will do.

  19. Andre says:

    san miguel is the 3rd telco, dati pa to

    and yes insync though will they go under?

    its basically dropbox for google docs

  20. kapitan says:

    11th Prediction:
    ill build my own tech blog and be second best to sir yuga, weeee… walang basagan ng trip please =p

  21. vondich says:

    Are those really predictions or just wishful thinkings? :-)

  22. AdrianU says:

    Running a dual core mobile processor at 2.5 Ghz isn’t very economical considering cost as well as power consumption profile in average real world usage.

    Running a quad core processor at around 1.5 to 2 Ghz is probably the best we can hope for with emphasis on hardware acceleration so CPU cycles can be finished faster thus allowing the processor to return to idle state sooner.

    But I could be wrong… (^_^)

  23. goodha says:

    that yugatech will still be running and we will still be reading yugatech on dec 22, 2012.

  24. jason says:

    My own predictions:

    – MS will NOT buy Nokia but Nokia will still selling WP7 and Nokia will make a Windows 8 tablets just like their first netbook
    – Netbooks will not survive because they cannot run Metro apps on Windows 8 due to its screen resolution 1024×600 instead of recommended Windows 8’s screen resolution (1024×768 or higher)

  25. Tmcr7 says:

    Great insights! May I add to the predictions?

    Samsung will launch the Galaxy S III in February.
    ASUS will launch the Padphone
    Nokia will launch the Lumia 900

  26. jdGONEMAD says:

    how ’bout the realization of “Vangie” !

  27. roiji says:

    i do not quite agree to the last two :}

    if wi-tribe can release 4G phones, then it’s a formidable opponent to globe and smart..

  28. 1337 says:

    Pinoy tech startup is Insynch. (Middleware – PC to GDocs)

    Google will crush this as soon as GDrive (or whatever it is called) gets mainstream/released.

  29. I hate to admit it but #6 is just so obvious considering the current situation DSL is in right now. Higher speeds are coming out lately (for PLDT at least) but the the price is atrocious. It totally sucks, because wired connection is still much better than wireless/3G/4G internet.

    I definitely hope that wireless internet will not kill wired internet, unless the telcos can deliver guaranteed promised speeds and seamless connections.

  30. Some might happen others will not. Stay updated and ready for any change..

  31. Gian says:

    Looking forward to the emergence of another telco. Competition is always good for consumers.

  32. edson says:

    I think apple might surprise us by calling it iphone 6. It’s the 6th iphone version anyway. haha!

  33. halabira says:

    more internet congestion, the less we download the faster the internet speed telcos give, the more we download the slower internet speed. look at telcos TOS. @12mbps=200php/180mb, 1-3mbps=unli data, 2mbps only 800mb a day, internet sucks sa pinas lol

  34. nice tech predictions,..i’m excited these tech things to be true….

  35. My own predition: A laptop-tablet hybrid will come out this year, with the AMOLED screen, keyboard, and you can run windows 7 (or 8) on it. This device will totally kill netbooks once it comes out.

    Lol, this is more like a wishful thinking than a prediction.

  36. enzo says:

    I hope the Nokia-Microsoft buyout doesn’t happen. I wish to see Marko Ahtisaari to be the new CEO. We need more visionaries this year.

  37. Kit says:

    how about the ipad3? some say it’ll be out on the 24th of feb

  38. Henry says:

    How about the transparent phones? As far as I know, the technology does exist but they don’t want to show it in the market yet.

  39. Nostradamus says:

    By the end of 2012, Apple’s market share shrinks to 10% in the smart phone and tablets markets… beaten by Google’s Android 90% market share. We see the same PC versus Mac wars of the 90’s but this time Apple will never recover again.

  40. archie says:

    Hey guys,

    Just need some advice from you.
    We have the PLDT-DSL connection for almost 2 years. Bad thing is, it is too slow even just for browsing the net. I thought it was my desktop which makes it slow, so i bought a new one (with faster speed)…same thing – net is still slow

    Should i ask PLDT to increase my net speed? (i don;t know what speed they give for 1000/month)
    should I try SMART instead?…please advice what is the BEST OPTION….for net speed maybe 4Mbps?



  41. asdf says:

    solution to batt life problems?

  42. Dr.MedTech says:

    tumama na ata ang #7

    welcome VodafonePhilippines

  43. budflick says:

    #9 – m.budflick.com . superstart up, i rely on donations to make the site run lol. i think filipino “social network” that runs on its own basecode wont make it. most if pinoy so called “social sites” are either integrated to FB or used a commercial software, which is not “lasang pinoy” in a sense. for me, if you say start up, as in start up that you created the codes, you burned your eyebrows, even if it appears like the competition. as long as its not commercially prepared and then branded as “proudly pinoy”

  44. Bystander says:

    Please write off #2 as it is improbable. Running over 2ghz on a mobile will produce much heat and will need more power to dissipate such heat thus equals less battery life which is unthinkable for a mobile. The most likely scenario will be producing four, six or even eight cores running at slower speeds with major upgrades in graphics performance. After all, we are in the era of parallel computing already.

  45. Andrew P says:

    More predictions:

    – Cisco might buy RIM, maker of blackberry. Cisco will use it to improve its services to their enterprise clients.

    – Service Provider will drop prices on their DSL services 2nd half this year. Focus to improve their bandwidth.

    – Their is no LTE product available worldwide and it will happen next year. False advertisement from the local telco.

    – Sad to hear that Globe chose a china company to manage its network and we will see drop in signal and delay in sms!

  46. Swati Pathak says:

    How about the transparent phones? As far as I know, the technology does exist but they don’t want to show it in the market yet.

    • Vie says:

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