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I can’t belive its almost 2009! In the spirit of Robert Cringley I can’t resist the temptation to write a few technology predictions for next year. Why should you belive in these predictions? The answer is ofcourse that you shouldn’t. 

There are two ways to try to predict the future. Either you can conduct research and try to find trends you feel are significant OR you can just go with your gut feeling. Going with my gut feeling is ofcourse what I will do here. And besides, it is my firm belief that no matter how much time the big guys spend on research their gut feeling is what ends up in their $10,000 reports.  So prepare for some rampant speculation!

No worthy iPhone contender will appear
Despite several new ”iPhone-killers” appearing from Nokia, Sony-Ericsson and HTC none of them will gain the traction that the iPhone has. For all of 2009 the iPhone or it’s succesor will remain the standard by which all other smartphones are compared.

Apple will start selling a sub €600 laptop
Apple is winning on a number of fronts right now. They are selling expensive laptops like hotcakes and making the worlds most desired mobile phone while still producing the MP3 player that all other MP3 players are compared to. But, most importantly, they are sitting on the world’s arguably best consumer 64-bit OS. 2009 will drive demand for over 4 GB of memory and Apple will be perfectly situated with most of OSX already transitioned to 64-bit.

As Microsoft starts to push 64-bit windows old device drivers will start to malfunction. Microsoft’s compability layer will create more pain for end users than it alleviates.

At the same time, Apple is now the only large notebook manufacturer that isn’t selling a netbook. They have a great OS and a netbook is the perfect way to lure people onto the Apple route. Apple have already realized this. 2009 will be the perfect opportunity for them to go mainstream with a cheap well-functioning netbook running OS X.

Google’s dominance ends
After 2009 it will be clear the Google is no longer the dominant player in the search market. Now this one is a big bet! But I am confident for a number of reasons. Google’s source of revenue is still AdSense. After that, they have a bunch of lossmaking operations. To mention a few: Picasa, Youtube, Orkut and Android. Even though I love Google they have clearly shown that they are unable to make money on anything else than search.

Sooner or later their dominance in search will have to end. And I predict that it will happen in 2009. This will be disastrous for Google as they have no other large source of income.