Over the course of the PDA phenomena I’ve owned several ranging from early phone address books/dials and personal organizers into the era of Palm dominance, through the introduction of Windows pdas and currently, the hybrid era. During that time I’ve seen a bewildering range of features and abilities emerge at an astonishing rate. While some devices have become highly specialized, others have attempted to diversify and yet others have offered very unique features in search of killer hardware status. Its not wonder that I’d keep a running tally of what I’d like my Dream PDA to be capable of.

First off, let me say that PDA operating system wise, I belong to the Pocket PC platform camp. When it comes to hardware I’m inclined towards the “Grand Unification Theory”. That is to say, I want one device for all my general gadget needs. Sure I’ll have a high end digital camera for serious photography and a laptop for heavy field work, but in the meantime… “One tool to rule them all, one tool to find them one tool to bring them all and in the darkness bind them!”

While many of the following features may seem outrageous or fanciful, let me state that MOST of them actually exist in one portable device or another already (usually at the expense of some other feature) or are VERY close to development. In any case, its my dream so I can push the envelope just a tad if I please. :-)

Built In:

  • Pocket PC Platform
  • Built in Bluetooth, WiFi and IR
  • Built in Phone (Speakerphone, International Roaming)*
  • FM Band transmission
  • Voice recognition (commands, speach2text, autodial)
  • Music player (mp3, etc)
  • eBook Reader (lit, pdf, etc)
  • Still Camera, Video Recorder, Audio Recorder
  • Internet (FULL features, sufficient for streaming video)*
  • Multiple platform Instant Messaging (AIM, MSN, ICQ, etc)
  • SMS support (ie rim/blackberry)
  • Built in Global Positioning System
  • 2 Way, multi-band radio (minimum 5 miles, GPS sync)
  • Built in TV & Radio Tuner
  • Built in Keyboard/Pad configuration
  • Minimum 1gig processor
  • Minimum 512mb onboard ram
  • Minimum 10gb onboard
  • Minimum 10 hour battery (constant use, traditional or mini-fuel)
  • Solar/Kinetic charging option
  • At least SIM, SD(IO), CF and PC card slots
  • Biometric security (eye, thumb, whatever)
  • Built in dongle-less usb/sync and charger cables
  • Built in IO ports for fullsized keyboard, mouse and monitor
  • Remote Control capacity (for home, car, etc)
  • Sensors: Temperature, smoke, electronic compass, altimeter, barometer, geiger counter, motion detector
  • God’s own encryption
  • Form factor that you want to make love to

* Multiple service providers, phone/internet simultaneously

Accessories:

  • Wireless earbud mic, with option for stereo
  • Wireless eyepiece, with option for duo

Utter Fantasy:

  • Flexible, retractable display (ala Earth: Final Conflict)
  • Wireless neural interface and sensory input