Microsoft's Nokia acquisition: Five wacky ideas that could come from the buyout
With Microsoft spending some overseas cash and buying parts of Finnish smartphone company Nokia, namely the devices and services division, we wonder what might come from the deal.
It's like making a cake. A little bit of sugar, a couple of eggs, some flour and with a few of other ingredients, you have yourself a tasty mixture. We have decided to run wild with our imaginations and come up with five wacky ideas that could result from the acquisition.
Nokia Lumia with Kinect
Take a Lumia handset and add the Kinect sensor to it and what do you get? A phone that will respond to voice command, gesture controls and let you play games. Okay, many smartphones will already do that, but let's take it to another level.
Say hello by waving and it will track your movements. Anyone who gets close to it will be detected. Make a video call and it will focus on the person talking, monitoring their every movement, switching focus as people pickup the conversation. It would be like a spy phone.
A new Kinect sensor is coming which will feature a high-fidelity 1080p colour camera, and a 3D vision camera for tracking movement. It will also be able to track your body with its improved skeletal mode and can track six players at once.
Add Kinect sensor technology to the Nokia Lumia with all its camera glory, and you would have one cracking James Bond-style handset in your palm.
The Skype phone reborn
We all love a bit of Skype, how could you not? Not only can you see whoever you are talking to (if you want to) but it's free using Skype to Skype.
Granted, Skype-dedicated phones have come around before and failed to really make an impact, but maybe it's time for a rebirth of the Skype phone. It might even be available in an exclusive cyan. After all, rather than separate companies working together, you'll have one company with the power of both the handset and the software.
You'd have a great camera for video calling, as well as instant messages, plus voice and video calling, so technically it would mean it fulfills the main function of a phone - contacting people.
Of course, you could argue that all smartphones with a Skype app are Skype phones, and mainly you'd be right, but imagine if it was baked into the OS even more than it does now. And doesn't drain the battery life ridiculously when it's permanently running in the background.
If an Xbox phone ever happened, it would probably be a sell-out. Imagine all those awesome games you could play without having to lug your console around with you. We're sorry, but the SmartGlass companion status isn't enough, we want the real deal in an Xbox phone.
It would probably need to be a device with a reasonable-sized screen and well, the battery would have to be pretty hefty, as would the processor, but with phablets being all the rage, that's well within the realms of the possible. And some are even saying that modern processors, like Qualcomm's Snapdragon 800, are getting close to the performance levels in the current generation of consoles, so it's not as far fetched as you might think.
Certainly, it would be a huge change in gaming if it happened, challenging Sony's plans for the PS Vita. And if you are already one of those unsociable people with your phone permanently attached to your hand, you'd definitely get a whole lot worse.
As there seem to be smartwatches launching left, right and centre, why not add another one to the mix. A Skype smartwatch would be great if you can't get enough of keeping in touch with friends and family from around the world.
It could take a leaf out of Samsung's book and come with an integrated camera in the strap and a speaker in the clasp. It would probably have to link to your Skype phone, but they could come as a little set, perhaps in a Skype cloud-shaped box.
At least you could answer calls anywhere, anytime, any place and you won't have to go to all that hassle of getting your phone or computer out to make that Skype-Skype call.
Nokia Lumia Surface
This one might actually happen. There have been rumours of a Nokia Windows tablet, which will reportedly run on Windows RT (is that not another burning platform?)
Apparently it will be similar in design to Lumia smartphones and come with a 10.1-inch screen, micro SIM slot, 2GB of RAM, a HDMI out port and a quad-core Nvidia Tegra 3 processor at 1.3GHz.
Nokia's Marjo Ahtisarri confirmed a Lumia tablet device back in March 2012 and since then rumours have switched between Windows RT and Windows Phone 8 devices.
It would seem like a logical step, but who knows what the future will bring now that the big "M" is running the show?
And as a little bonus idea, the time is coming when Microsoft has to change the name SkyDrive thanks to losing its trademark court battle with BSkyB, so perhaps LumiaDrive wouldn't be too ludicrous. Watch this space.