Entelligence is a column by technology strategist and author Michael Gartenberg, a man whose desire for a delicious cup of coffee and a quality New York bagel is dwarfed only by his passion for tech. In these articles, he'll explore where our industry is and where it's going -- on both micro and macro levels -- with the unique wit and insight only he can provide.
There are some devices that are universally loved or reviled -- I don't know anyone who doesn't think HTC EVO 4G is awesome, or anyone who doesn't think the WikiReader was awful. Then there are some that seem to be quite polarizing, and these are the ones that I'm usually most interested in -- just listen to Joshua Topolsky and me debate Kin
on the Engadget Podcast, for example. The latest of these polarizing devices is the Sony Dash
. The Dash is hard to categorize. It's a connected screen, based in part on the venerable Chumby. Nilay Patel was somewhat lukewarm
about it. Ross Rubin likes it
and the Wall Street Journal
was somewhat ambivalent
about it. Here's what I've learned from a few days living with one on my nightstand.
1. The vision is fundamentally correct. There's a lot that needs to improve about the Dash, both from a marketing and implementation perspective, but the core idea is sound. Microsoft likes to talk about "three screens and a cloud" and I agree with that vision -- my phone number is 408-3-SCREEN -- but it's really a statement about consumption, creation and communication. Count the number of PCs, TVs, phones, game devices, media players and navigation devices you have around the house and interact with -- it's more like 33 screens. The idea that there's going to be multiple connected screens that consumers interact with is real.