Behold Scatter Cushion Computing

Deloitte, the hosts of the Technology, Media and Telecommunications Predictions 2011, were very careful to mandate “Chatham House” rules at their launch event in London this week.

Peter O’Donoghue, Predictions Lead Partner, said “No blogging, no tweeting and no Facebook Status updating” as he welcomed us to the overview; which seemed to cover most of the possibilities. This is actually a pity as the discussion from the panel was great value.

I’ve attended previous Predictions events and this one – on its tenth anniversary – was the most fascinating so far. This is partly because of the lively contributions from the panel (which I can’t talk about, sorry). Partly because of the interesting nature of the next 12 months of media with the advent of new challenges. And partly because the report merged developments in the three sectors of Technology, Media and Telecoms and made links between the trends in each. Deloitte’s view, rightly, is that the three are so inextricably linked that they must be considered in conjunction. And for those who have expertise in media, seeing the trends from Tech and Telecom is very insightful.

I am allowed however to report their most significant trend – the advent of Scatter Cushion Computing. Deloitte predicts that in 2011 more than 50% of computing devices sold globally (over 400 million units) will not be PCs. These smartphones, tablets and netbooks will use different and non-standard processing chips and operating systems which will lead to challenges in connecting up your different devices. It also means that they think that the sitting room may well contain more “computers” of one kind or another (games consoles, set top boxes, smartphones, tablets, kindles etc) than cushions.

This may lead to more distractions from the TV. But it will more likely emphasise the role of TV as the new point of sale for advertisers as the ability to order a product while watching the advert immediately proliferates.

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