Sunday, January 2, 2011

Random Tech Predictions

Back in 2008 I told my boss and various co-workers that IBM was going to acquire Sun. I mentioned it my boss because I thought we should think of the consequences it could have on us and ponder what we might do in the event something "bad" happened. While I ended up being wrong (Oracle won the bidding war), I was close :P

To stroke my ego in the event I'm right about something, I'm going to go ahead and make some tech predictions based on the things I'm reading online and my own perceptions. In the event I'm wrong, hopefully not enough or my friends read this so I won't be embarrassed :P

Android Surpasses iPhone and Blackberry in Smartphone Market Share

Android has been on a tear. Last I've read, they were nipping at the heals of iPhone and not too far away from Blackberry. I wouldn't be surprised that they overtake iPhone just after this past holiday season. 2011 is the year they put iPhone and Blackberry away. I'm saying this will be true even if the iPhone comes out on Verizon.

Chrome OS Bombs

As much as I would like to see Chrome OS succeed, I don't think Google is entering the OS market in the right way. Their Android strategy was great. They made many of the negative things about the iPhone better. However, they're introducing Chrome OS into the relatively niche netbook market, which is already under attack from the tablet market. I'm skeptical the strategy is going to work out.

Kinect Becomes Huge

Microsoft has not had a hot gadget for years, but it appears that's over. Kinect has been selling like hotcakes this past holiday season. I read somewhere that it was on pace to sell 6 million units in less than 2 months. That's despite the fact that there are only a modest set of games and software that come with it.

With my belief that Chrome OS will bomb and Apple apparently doing iterations on older products (e.g. iPad 2), I'm going to predict that Kinect will become the gadget of 2011. Rumors are (and I'm going to bet they become true) that Windows 7 support is on the way. I'd bet there will be some really cool software that will come out for it, such as movie editing, painting, digital puppetry, etc.

Salesforce Stock Plummets

I'm a big fan of Salesforce, I think it's an incredible company with great products. However, their current valuation is at 17-18 billion and a P/E ratio of 240. Yes, 240! I'm the farthest thing from a financial expert, but it looks like they'll perhaps have a 25-30% increase in revenue, maybe 20-25% increase in operating expenses, and maybe 5-10% increase in net income over the last year?? This is what gives a company a 240 P/E ratio? With Microsoft, Oracle, and other companies gunning for Salesforce, I have a hard time believing they can drive revenue and profit to justify they current valuation. I'm wondering if the hype over "cloud computing" is simply making people giddy over Salesforce's stock.

Ok, those are my four random predictions. We'll see how I do :-)

Update (1/15/11):

I totally forgot about the Nintendo 3DS. That thing is going to mega-huge too. Due to supply-chain issues, probably not as big as Kinect sales wise, but possibly as big buzz-wise.

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