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GLOBAL – There’s always plenty of rumours flying around about Nokia. Just a couple of days ago, a whole fresh crop appeared on a number of websites regarding a new mystery device. But it should be no surprise that new things are in the wings somewhere. Innovation is something that’s pretty much native to Nokia – if you go through our history of industry firsts, that should be readily apparent.

But what exactly is “innovation”? Let’s be clear. Something isn’t innovative just because it’s new. To be truly innovative, a product or service has to offer new value. So being able to download apps onto your phone is innovative; those individual apps may or may not be innovative, depending on what they do.

One area of innovation that’s continually evolving is the ways in which a phone’s interface might be innovative. To offer new value, we can’t just be talking about a new set of icons or even more home screens. That’s not innovation, it’s just an increment. An innovation in interface design will make our interactions quicker, more natural or simpler – and so offer users value through the time and effort they save.

Technology futurologists have been talking about ‘pervasive computing’ for a while, to give one example. The idea that we stop thinking about technology as being something separate from the rest of our lives. That it just blends in and becomes natural.

At the moment, of course, our technology is far from natural. There’s nothing natural about icons and drop-down lists and tickboxes. It would probably be better if you could just swipe through your apps, wouldn’t it?

So one of the things that our engineers are up to is making technology disappear. How we then control our devices is the tricky part: with possibilities like gestural control, contextual choices and – who knows? – thought projection – all up for possible consideration. If you’ve had a play with Beta projects like Nokia Situations and Nokia Bots, it shows one direction that might take.

But the possibilities are endless… and very exciting. We can’t wait to show you more – maybe a sneak peek at “Jessie’s Girl” – in the weeks to come.

Image credit: Wootang01