Over the past fifty or so years, confusing devices were seen as ‘advanced’ and ultimately desirable. But the trend has changed, with the advent of Apple’s philosophy seeing sophisticated devices becoming simpler.

Although the hardware was nothing fancy, Apple’s iPhone 3G was the first smartphone to bring powerful apps to the masses. Ironically the company didn’t achieve its success by marketing their phone as sophisticated; instead they dumbed the tech-wizardry down by labelling it simple.

With the phone speaking everybody’s language (and not the other way around), it attracted a large following who continued to invest in it.

As computing DNA seeps into more devices, the art of making sophisticated features easy to digest will continue, according to the chief economist for the Consumer Electronics Association, Shawn DuBravac. During a conference at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, DuBravac recognised that remote controls, the age-old magic wand used to will different gizmos, is now benefitting from fewer buttons.

“Gesture and voice controls are showing up in more devices,” he said. The Wall Street Journal say DuBravac cited Microsoft’s Kinect motion controller as an example.


The Kinect does away with the gaming remote by using a camera that recognises a player’s body movements. The game alleviates learning different button combinations by relying on movements people have been doing since childhood. This successful approach has been solidified by the Guinness Book of World Records, who noted the Kinect as the fastest selling consumer electronics device in history.  

The CEA claims the ordinary household currently has 25 consumer electronic products, with the number likely to grow as products become easier to use.  

DuBravac expects this week’s CES show to see a wave of 20,000 new products showcased, with televisions, Ultrabooks and smartphones deemed the big-draw categories.

Televisions are becoming internet savvy devices featuring powerful processers and Google developed operating systems. The move will see more of them controlled by voice commands, such as an anticipated LG offering, or through movements and gestures.

Read: World First: 55″ Lenovo TV Runs Android 4.0 & Hard-Hitting Specs

There’s even word Microsoft will be embedding tailored Kinect technology into a Sony TV, in a pre-emptive move to stifle future tricks hidden within Apple’s sleeve.

Read: Microsoft’s Kinect VS Apple’s Siri In TV Market

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