Monday, November 14, 2011

How Fast is Too Fast?

We live in a fast-paced world.  We’re all extremely busy and we have a ton of work to do and we need to do it two ways: fast and on-the-go.  With the newly released quad-core smartphones, the question is now becoming: Do we need everything to go this fast?

I’m extremely happy with my laptop: A triple-core 2.2 Giga-hertz processor with 4 GB of RAM is really all I need and then some.  I’m more than happy to play games on my consoles rather than on a computer.  What I have now is more than I even need to access.  So, what is the point of make our phones this fast?

HTC Edge, the world's first quad-core smartphone
Simply put: because that’s what people want.  Why does your average person want this?  In a phone, there doesn’t seem to be anything to worry about other than “first world problems.”  You want your app to load in less than 4 seconds because, let’s be honest, you have more things to do during your day.  You want your Twitter to load faster than 6 seconds because in all that time, you could have been reading tweets.  It might open up the realm for graphics and video load time, but do we really need the speed in our phones?

With computers, it’s a bit of a different story.  To your film editors, it speeds up the time converting the video formats, which are extremely big in most cases.  I worked on a film that bought six 4 TB hard drives for the cameras.  That’s 24 Terabytes, or about 24,000 Gigabytes, or approximately 2.5 million Megabytes, or…. Well, you get the point. 

It’s a little ridiculous to think that the average person would need so much speed to surf Facebook, but people seem to think that it makes EVERYTHING go faster.  While it will cut the boot time for your computer and possibly some applications, it won’t be as noticeable as you think, unless you run some really needy programs.

I don’t think our phones need to be this fast, though it’s always nice to see what technology can do.  Computers are constantly getting faster and more powerful.  This then leads to us making everything else faster.  What they need to do is spend that time enhancing other appliances or putting computers in a toaster.  I’m tired of waiting one whole minute for Pop Tarts; I could be reading tweets, loading apps, and stalking Facebook in that time with my all-powerful phone.

Do you think we need phones this fast?  What’s your stance?

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