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May 30, 2011

Dead and buried: 5 technologies the smartphone killed

You don’t have to look far to find disruptive technologies that killed off the technologies that came before them. Electricity made steam power obsolete, computers put an end to typewriters and CDs destroyed vinyl. But perhaps one of the most destructive killer devices ever is the smartphone. Don’t believe us. Check out these 5 technologies that smartphones helped bury.

Portable point and shoot cameras

Nokia has been the world’s largest manufacturer of digital cameras since 2008. Hardly surprising when you hear that 4 billion people worldwide take pictures with their mobiles. And now, thanks to the smartphones like the Nokia N8, with its 12-megapixel camera, portable cameras are pretty much pointless. Why bother lugging one around, when you have a smartphone that can capture crisp, clear images anytime, anywhere?

Portable games consoles

Ever since the Nintendo Gameboy was released way back in 1989 people have been playing on the move. But it’s really cellphones that popularized mobile gaming with Snake still the world’s most popular mobile game. Smartphones have taken that one step further and allow you to play literally thousands of amazing games. When you think of the massive success of Angry Birds, it’s easy to see why portable game consolers are on a losing streak.

Portable projectors

Portable projectors have always been fantastic for sharing photos, films and presentations to loads of people at once. Trouble is they’re pretty pricey and they’re not always at hand. The Nokia N8 comes with a HDMI cable meaning you can connect the phone to any projector or HDTV set. A simple cable is much lighter, and lot more portable than a projector. And if that wasn’t already enough reason for the portable projector to go the way of the Dodo, their price tag is.

Portable video cameras

When Cisco recently announced that were shutting down their Flip personal video recorder division, nobody was surprised. Why not? Because simple video cameras were a great idea in 2008, but, nowadays, smartphones have just as good video capabilities. What’s more, you can edit these videos on the go and share them on your social networks with just a few taps. When filming is this easy, it’s no wonder portable video cameras have played their final scene.

The digital music player

Smartphone users are some of the heaviest consumers of music, with 42% claiming to have a collection of between 2-5,000 songs and 27% listening for 4-6 hours per day. Is it any wonder then that they’ve helped speed up the demise of the digital music player? Of course you can still buy them, but not many people do and why would you when your smartphones is just as good and works with amazing music headsets like the Nokia BH-905i.

Think of any more technologies whose downfall has come about thanks to the rise of the smartphone? Or want to predict others that will bite the dust? As ever, we’d love to hear your thoughts.