Those with long-enough memories will know that the world of mobile phone accessories began with giant bricks that used to be carried around just to make them work at all. Over the years we’ve seen the rise and fall of wired headphones, hands-free kits and protective cases, but with new generations of tech on the horizon, what accessories could become must-haves in the future?
Virtual reality is, by far, the most anticipated tech development out there, at least in the eyes of the general public. As it stands, the standard VR equipment is usually larger than any mobile device and in most cases is too prohibitively expensive to be seen as a regular accessory. Given how app developers are showing interest, however, it might soon become something required more than a luxury.
Media in particular is delving heavily into VR, with such tech appearing in TV, movies, and even online gaming. The interactive nature of existing games makes them the ideal landscape for a VR revamp: online roulette tables already involve live dealers, with the game live streamed from a studio and, often, the availability of a chat function. This format is already only a step removed from the standard online version which was only a step ahead of its land-based counterparts. It’s only natural that it could take one more step into the realm of VR.
Added to that, developers like Evolution Gaming already have titles like Gonzo’s Treasure Map on the books with both VR and AR, the features could be expanded to their and other parts of their range. In that respect, a slimmed-down, smartphone-friendly VR set may be on the books of some tech companies to cover that gap in the market.
It may sound a little bit like sci-fi, but holographic displays are a lot closer than you may think. The idea behind holograms is basically to create a 3D shape of light with the more advanced ones detailed enough to depict a fully moving human figure. The examples we currently have of this technology are usually elaborate, take a lot of planning and preparation, and often involve water vapour – which naturally isn’t ideal for smartphones.
Thankfully, we’ve already had a successful experiment in 2017 between Verizon and Korea Telecom of a holographic call, albeit with a lot of technology behind it. Once the tech industry has a working model, they inevitably move to make it smaller and more efficient, so perhaps hologram calls won’t be so far off.
This accessory may still be in the distant future but it’s a genuine avenue of research for several large companies. The concept is that a phone can be charged via human bioelectricity just by holding the device between a thumb and finger, with the idea being that it could be used in emergency situations to give a small charge to a dead device.
To be clear, the topic of bioelectricity has been discussed for centuries as a strange mystical concept. However, it’s only recently that we’re getting to grips with the science of it and, as such, any technology based around it would be decades away at the very least. This, of course, would be even longer for it to be commercially viable, but it’s a fascinating topic nonetheless.
The best thing about the modern tech world is that all of these could end up being wrong – we never exactly know what’s going to pop up in the next few weeks or months. Wait and see has never been so fun!