The scary side of mobile phone innovation…

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As a kid, I never knew or heard about a mobile phone…well…no one heard about it I guess. In this day and age, I cannot fathom anyone not knowing what mobile phones are and how they keep us connected.

While they do an awesome job of functioning as a computer in the palm of your hand, they have started venturing into more innovative ways to implement security.

Starting from a simple user-name/password combination, passcode locks, pattern locks,to finger-print scanning, and now iris scanning. Imagine this…until now the user had to know what the magic code is to unlock his/her phone to get access to the plethora of information the mobile phone becomes a gateway to.

Today, one does not need the user to even be alive to get access to their personal information on the phone…how hard can scanning a fingerprint or an iris be ? Why are financial institutions embracing these innovations, while it is pretty obvious they are not the right use-cases for this kind of innovation. Thankfully, they also offer the good old username/password combination, but lets be real…how many of us use that feature anymore when we can make do with fingerprint scanners.

Two-pass authentication is good, but is useless when you have the mobile phone already with you. Big shakes that they send an additional code…wonder what they are trying to secure.

Apps : The fading relevance of the Windows Phone

I love windows !….there you go..I said it out loud. I love Microsoft products as well. In fact, I rely on Microsoft for my daily bread and butter. I would not hesitate to going as far as saying that MS products helped me learn programming faster.

I have sincerely tried to start using the Windows version of a mobile phone ever since I could afford it.

Palm Treo 800 (WP 6):

Palm Treo 700w Smartphone interesting phone…And quite frankly did not use it for anything more than playing “Bubble Breaker”, making phone calls, checking emails, and yeah…some not too amazing but bearable pictures.

Samsung Focus (WP 7):

Not a bad phone at all. Worked just fine. But no apps. And this was probably 2 years  ago….around 2011. At that time, I gave Windows the benefit of doubt, and let go simply because it was new. When WP8 was about to be released, I was excited as usual, however, MS decided to change specs on me. Which basically meant …. my WP7 phone was going to be useless if I wanted to upgrade. Hmm…ended up selling it off to get myself an iPhone 4. And yeah..not many apps.  At that time, there was no Facebook app, no Bank Of America app, nothing.

Nokia Lumia 1020 (WP8):

Fast forward to Q4 2013… enter the Nokia Lumia 1020..what more could I ask for.  Amazing camera, good size, great look, some more nice software updates from MS…..but NO @#$@#$ APPS even now. Some of the fundamental apps that people have come to love are still not available for WP8. Unfortunately, even with the awesomely unique Metro/Modern design, and the live tiles, Windows is losing its relevance in the phone area simple because of lack of apps. What good is all the infrastructure, if there is no one to use it. I got the Lumia 1020, used it for a week, and found it lacking. Most of my life is around dropbox, and windows does not support dropbox…rather, there is no authentic app for it yet. No instagram either.  Inspite of the lack of apps, I have to admit the simple fact… the apps that do exist are awesome. While I am not a big fan of the form factor, it is just a matter of getting used to. Sparing that, everything else about the WP8 hardware is amazing. Oh yeah, the camera grip kicks ass. Makes it a bit bulky, but hey…it has an additional power source there too.

So, lets see…considering my history, it looks like I am going to give Windows Phone one more chance when the next big OS push comes around…WP9 I hope. Hopefully, there will be enough good apps then. Hopefully, I shall stick to it.

Because, honestly the iPhone has lost its charm. There is nothing amazing about it anymore.