Cellular kills the CPU star


Almost any and everywhere you look, there are people with their heads down staring at the glowing screen in their palm with a focused facial expression. Usually it is one of three things that they are looking at: a text message, social media or a game.

Less than a decade ago, the idea of having the entire world at your fingertips was only beginning to be realized. The personal data assistant (PDA) was on the decline and cell phones were becoming cheaper and more plentiful. A decade before, even that was something straight out of “Star Wars.”

It used to be necessary to have a desktop computer to access the Internet, play video games and even conduct business operations. Apple and Microsoft were on the forefront and slowly became more integrated in the daily lives of average citizens.

Personal desktop computers (PCs) tended to and continue to be a great deal cheaper and more general than Macs, which explains their prevalence among normal everyday households. Apple desktops show up more frequently in workplaces and companies.

Even before the smartphone – pioneered by the legendarily innovative iPhone – the idea of mobile information manifested in the form of laptops, which were marketed as less powerful but cheaper alternatives to their clunky, stationary counterparts.

As access to information became easier and more important, the world became busier. Information, or the ability to access it quickly, became essential. Stationary desktops were too static in this rapidly moving world, and eventually, even laptops became too large and immobile for certain people.

Enter the cell phone era. While not nearly as powerful as laptops or desktops, their mobility became their most important quality. Innovators became intrigued with the idea of taking a desktop and making it the size of a PDA and succeeded. Although Blackberrys used to be the quintessential business phone, smartphones of today and tablets, their larger counterparts, dominate the field of information.

One only has to look at product sales for any company. Apple has sold vastly more iPhones and iPads than desktop Macs since the iPhone was unveiled in 2007, and the trend is the same throughout the electronic world.

Smartphones and tablets dominate the world. Desktops are relegated to offices and schools. Newer versions are released frequently, and it seems that Apple unveils a new product every month.

Nearly 50 percent of Americans, according to many sources, own either a smartphone or tablet. One cannot walk through a city, on a college campus or in a workplace without seeing one. They have rendered desktop computers virtually obsolete, and with the current trend of information accessibility, desktops are going to become a thing of the past.