In a March 2007 entry, I expressed my optomism about multi-touch technology in general and the work of Jeff Han, especially. Well, multi-touch interfaces appear to be about to burst dramatically into devices. In “Personal Tech 2008: Top 10 Trends,” Mike Elgan of ComputerWorld reminded me:
But in 2008, we’ll be able to buy at least two new multi-touch products. The next-generation iPhone, which we think will ship in summer, will probably have even better multi-touch features than the current version. And special software developed and already demonstrated by Dell will transform its brand-new Latitude XT tablet computer into an innovative multi-touch PC — we just don’t know exactly when.
Apple is also rumored to be working on a multi-touch tablet — basically a giant iPhone.
Microsoft is also planning multi-touch support for the eventual successor to Vista, called Windows 7. In the meantime, the company may be tempted to boost lagging Vista and Windows Mobile sales by offering downloadable multi-touch support in 2008.
Why can’t an ultra-portable tablet laptop have a phone built into it? I could scribble onto an AI hand-writing recognition page or use an on-screen keyboard to take notes while talking on the phone. I’d be happier carrying a book-sized object with a bluetooth earpiece rather than a laptop, pda, and phone.