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The Big Picture On A Small Screen




Like Alice In Wonderland, taking a swig from that bottle labeld ““Drink Me,” computing devices continue to shrink in the never ending quest for ultimate mobility. Mobile users, like Alice, who had already taken the plunge down the rabbit hole, continue to drink in the shrinking potion as they look for smaller and smaller devices in their personal quests for greater mobility.

There’s no news in the fact that smaller is better for most mobile solutions. As media becomes more and more a driving engine of the Internet, how we view it and how we listen to it becomes more and more of a personal choice.

After a recent conversation with good friend, WNewquay, (he needs to get back to writing about this kind of thing soon,) I started thinking about this. Every big technology innovation in history has been met with friction from different arenas: those that it might replace or shift, and from those who just like things the way they are and don’t want to see change being the two biggest friction points.

That said, there’s a very interesting conundrum here that might go beyond those common reactions to innovation. When we plug in and tune into a very personal small screen, we’re essentially tuning out the world. Nothing really wrong with that on many levels. Tuning out at times can be a very valuable retreat. When the home entertainment boom begin to really catch fire, social observers and commentators labeled the phenomenon ““cocooning”. Now that we can take our home entertainment almost anywhere in our mobile world, are we are on the verge of creating our own little mobile cocoons? Are we perhaps denying ourselves some of the social aspects of sharing music, film, etc.. with others in a communal setting?

The point I’m tilting at here is that while we are creating and buying smaller devices to display and play small chunks of media, we might be making our worlds a bit smaller and perhaps less open to socialization even though we may be broadening our horizons with access to new content.  When is small too small? Is it? Would love to get some feedback on those questions and a few others as I ponder this further.

  1. How do you consume media?
  2. What is your ideal media device on the market now? Why?
  3. How has the advent of broadband affected your media viewing and listening habits?
  4. Would you consider yourself a passive or active consumer of media on-line?
  5. Has consuming portable media on-line replaced any other form of entertainment consumption in your life?
  6. Have you purchased or are considering purchasing a mobile device solely for the purpose of consuming media?



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