I bought a little Galaxy Mini from the Vodafone stall in the mall the other day. The sales person had a badge that told me that he was a “Smart Phone Ninja”. A Ninja, I thought for a moment with true wonder. This person has been studying the technology of smart phones from the age of three judging by his acne. For a laugh I asked him, “What version of Android is on this phone; Ice Cream Sandwich or Hamburger?”
He looked puzzled only for the tiniest second then promptly and confidently replied, “Hamburger.”
Wrong answer dude. It was in fact Froyo (30 seconds on Wikipedia told me that). Those who know will know that there is no Android OS called Hamburger because they are all named after puddings, which are equally delicious as hamburgers but arrive at a different time during meals. I confronted him over this. He looked ashamed and hung his head, pulled out a long sword, plunged it into his own torso and with a shocked look dropped to the floor. Ninja status withdrawn. To use the parlance of his generation, he had just experienced his own epic fail.
But no matter. The point is that my purchase was a cheap phone bought between the time it takes to eat a small roast pork lunch and have a perve at the lingerie shop window. This is not a major IT purchase but it has major implications for the future of IT provision. Resellers are increasingly facing the fact that you don’t need brains to sell IT, hence the brainiac in the mall with his Ninja badge.
Despite that, this cheap little phone has enough computing power to do almost all the tasks required of it by many of the country’s most important employees. Which makes us think, what future for resellers if a spotty kid is qualified to advise on computing-communication devices? And to think, Ninjas will be selling us Google Glass within a year or two.
As NZ inches ahead down the technology road, the rest of the world runs. They’re out there testing Google Glass and we’re stumbling around trying to find a crappy 3G connection with first generation smart phones and hoping we can get Angry Birds downloaded before our measly data caps run out.
Right now resellers should be negotiating with the Police department and every other essential services department on how to supply those public officials with smart glasses. Or it’s going to be left to the pimple-faced Ninjas in the malls. Just think about how many officials will be wearing Google Glass or another form, as soon as the insurance companies work out they need concrete video proof of all potential legal situations?
I tried to reach Google to ask if there were any plans there to supply the world’s cops with recording spectacles, but I managed to break my own internet in the trying. It seems typing Google, into Google really does ‘break the internet’ as was once warned in an episode of the IT Crowd.
However, as we fumble with our RFPs a few selected Wellington cops (mainly those with double charge X2 Taser guns) are currently testing body cameras to record anything and anyone they see. So this is already happening and it’s not my crazy addiction to conspiracy sites that has sent me down the loony bin path. Although that also may be true.
The NZ cops have yet to supply any information as to which company is supplying the ‘body cameras’ or what make or model is being used (I’m going to have to apply for another Official Information Act request to get this information.)
A Police spokesperson says this: “Police recently began a trial of officer-operated body cameras in the Wellington Police District, and will be evaluating its future potential for operational policing.”
And superintendent Barry Taylor, Police national manager operations, says the cameras: “...will be worn by staff using the X2 Taser. The purpose of this is to assist in providing additional operational context in situations where the X2 may be used.”
In other words: If they Taser your ass, they film you too. Those clips make hilarious viewing on AFV don't they?
So not only is the Police gearing up to record our every move without telling us, they’ve also not told us who’s supplying the cameras.
As resellers we should be queuing up at the door presenting all possible solutions to this opportunity that is only now in its germination stage. And as the general public we should be waving flags demanding to know which bottle of wine we drank when our rights to privacy were taken away, because it must have been a damn good one.