So, look for the trend to include far fewer startups but more usable services that allow their functions to be accessed via mobile devices and even through other services. The web will become increasingly more mashable, allowing us to plug and play with services the way we want.
Open vs Closed Platforms
All this leads to the importance of open platforms such as Open Social for web apps and Android for mobile apps. Sure, proprietary platforms will continue to enjoy success in the short term such as Facebook apps and iPhone apps, but ultimately long-term success will be all about the openness and flexibility of development environments.
Keep in mind that being “Open” does NOT always mean “Free” and zero revenue. Yes, initially things will be free as in all things open source, but it can lead to profitable windfalls should the platform and applications gain traction and become successful.
Divide and Conquer
Personally, I’ve also begun to divide and conquer in my daily battle with the firehose of data and information. Yes, I will still dip my toe in new waters and test drive new startups and technologies, but my core every day services will continue to remain a manageable amount. For example, is there really any reason to jump on and use a dozen different social networks? That requires a lot of time and effort regarding login credentials and managing all related emails within each system. Twitter and Friendfeed provide more than sufficient access to what’s out there these days.
On the mobile side of things, I’m thrilled with being able to reduce the number of devices and gadgets that I used to carry around all the time. For example, I used to have a Blackberry for phone calls and emails, an HP Ipaq with pocket PC/windows mobile for more advanced PDA functions and an iPod for music, videos, podcasts, etc. Well, thanks to Apple’s iPhone and similar devices I no longer have to maintain and carry multiple devices. We’re able to reduce the number of gadgets to one multiple purpose mobile device which is an excellent example of the beauty of less is more.