One of the big trends of 2011 was “more powerful devices,” such as the HTC Edge, the first quad-core mobile phone with a quad-core 1.5GHz processor, says Josh Lovison, a digital strategy consultant.
That, in turn, is leading to the leading edge of the “docking” trend, where smart phones will be able to use various peripherals that make smart phones usable in some of the ways notebook PCs are used. Motorola’s Atrix phone is an example.
ASUS also has designed a keyboard dock for its upcoming tablet, the Transformer Prime, which allows it to operate much like a laptop in both form and function.
Changes in data plans and the advent of Long Term Evolution, as well as patent wars and Android’s rise, are other notable developments.
Mobile apps being rendered dynamically also was a new trend. Facebook, for example, made a recent update that retains some static user interface elements are native code specific to a device, but almost all of the dynamic content displayed is a rendered page of its website, within the app. It's a hybrid between "app" and "web app."
Mobiles also are displacing dedicated gaming devices as the preferred way to engage with gaming content and games.
According to stats from Flurry, 2011 will be the first year that gaming revenues on mobile devices (iOS and Android) exceed revenues from specialized gaming handhelds such as Nintendo's 3DS or Sony's PSP.
Voice search, which got attention because of Apple’s “Siri,” has been available on Android devices for nearly two years as well, and represents an advance for ease of use on mobiles when searching. Easier search will mean “more search.”