More than a pocket PC: your next phone will be even better, and here’s why

New models will receive significant improvements and turn into smart personal assistants thanks to artificial intelligence and powerful processors.

Devices released in 2024 will be significantly better than their predecessors, thanks to new technologies that engineers have already implemented. CNET portal analysts predicted exactly how the smartphones you can buy to replace your old phones will change in the coming months.

Why should smartphones be any different?

Annual phone updates often seem mundane and unimportant, but in 2023, manufacturers have found new ways to make them interesting. Innovation is much needed in the industry, which is currently in decline.

Weak demand and economic challenges in 2022 have meant the smartphone market will see its lowest annual shipments since 2013, according to International Data Corporation (IDC). Data from insurance company Assurant also shows that owners are keeping the same phones for longer periods of time without buying new ones; however, this may indicate that quality has improved over the past decade.

Consumer Intelligence Research Partners also noticed this trend and gave a specific example: In 2023, many users will replace their iPhones with at least three years of service with newer models, while in 2019 many more people replaced their phones after two years of service.

“It’s become really hard for people to see the value. Why would I upgrade when my two-year-old phone is pretty much the same,” said Aaron West, a senior analyst at market research firm Omdia.

But in 2023, manufacturers came up with something to surprise buyers. IDC data for October showed an increase in new smartphone shipments, indicating increased interest in them. New features based on artificial intelligence can make phones much smarter and turn them into personal assistants rather than just pocket computers that access the internet.

What will artificial intelligence give to smartphones and their owners?

Artificial intelligence has played a major role in smartphones for years, especially when it comes to features like facial recognition, photography, and language translation. But the generative AI technology that powers ChatGPT and generates responses based on training data in response to queries opens up new possibilities beyond unlocking a phone or blurring the background of a photo. In such cases, instead of working passively, artificial intelligence-supported productive functions are designed to be used more actively.

Google demonstrated this in practice in October with the introduction of the Pixel 8 series, which uses AI for new ways to edit photos, like moving and resizing individual objects and changing facial expressions. New Google phones can also create new wallpapers based on specific themes from scratch, and the search giant is incorporating generative AI into Google Assistant.

Qualcomm, which produces chips for phones of Samsung, OnePlus and other famous brands, developed its new mobile processor based on generative artificial intelligence. Xiaomi 14 and 14 Pro, the latest flagship devices from the world’s third largest phone manufacturer, are among the first devices to use the new Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 chip, according to IDC. Many more smartphones are expected to use this processor in 2024.

Qualcomm’s teaser video for its vision of generative AI in smartphones showed several examples of how the technology could manifest itself on mobile devices. This can manifest itself in a virtual assistant that can highlight key points in phone conversations and generate reports on them.

The new chip will also allow you to zoom out of an image taken with your phone and create detail to expand the frame, making it look like you took the photo with an ultra-wide-angle lens. Features like these are much more than photo editing tools; They help create completely new photos that were not possible during shooting.

According to Bloomberg, Apple may add new AI features to the next major iPhone update, which will likely be released in September. This could lead to auto-generated playlists in Apple Music and more productive AI features in Messages and Siri.

Everyone will have a foldable smartphone

Also, according to experts, foldable smartphones may finally become widespread once developers can solve major design problems. The Motorola Razr Plus and Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 have a larger external display, making them more usable when closed and further justifying their premium prices.

The biggest obstacle limiting the popularity of foldable phones is their high price: the Galaxy Z Flip 5 and Motorola Razr Plus typically cost $1,000 in the US. If you want a foldable device that combines tablet and phone use, you’ll have to pay a whopping $1,800 for the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 5 or Google Pixel Fold.

But foldable devices have taken a step towards becoming more affordable in 2023, which could go a long way in making them more accessible. Motorola, for example, launched the Razr for $700, which puts it in the same category as foldable phones.

According to Counterpoint Research, the popularity of foldable phones will continue to grow in 2024 and beyond, with shipments expected to exceed 100 million units by 2027. Approximately 20 million units are expected to be shipped in 2023, according to IDC.

“These updates are really important. I think the foldable form factor is also an important part,” said Peter Jarich, president of mobile industry research firm GSMA Intelligence.

Charging speed is important

While artificial intelligence and foldable displays are critical to the development of smartphones, CNET has also seen changes in other areas that directly impact the way people use their devices. Charging speed has increased, which means you don’t have to waste so much time. An example of this is the new Xiaomi 14 phone, which has 90W faster charging compared to the previous version’s 67W charging.

Faster charging and more energy-efficient chips help make up for the lack of progress in battery technology, Yarich said.

“So from a battery perspective, that doesn’t mean there’s no problem anymore,” he said, “but the same issues are being addressed in different places.”

We have previously written about the five most anticipated devices of 2024. The list included iPhone 16, Samsung Galaxy S24, Dell XPS 16, LG TVs and Apple Watch X.

Source: Focus


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