Hardware Becomes Software

by Luke Wroblewski July 8, 2009

Though it's not a new trend, the rate at which hardware solutions become just software solutions is interesting to watch.

As consumer device platforms (like the iPhone) integrate a rich enough set of capabilities to develop on, the transition from unique hardware for every consumer device to a set of screens that can run many software solutions accelerates. Here's just a few examples:

hardware is software

More Examples

“Apple fanboys might still be drooling from the iPhone 3Gs announcement, but I bet they never saw this coming: an electric superbike with an iPhone for all its instrumentation.” - Electric Superbike Uses iPhone For Its Dashboard, Gas 2.0 (thanks Vincent)

“Now the smartphone is beginning to displace yet another stand-alone device — the GPS receiver — as a convenient way for drivers to get directions to unknown destinations.” - Sending GPS Devices the Way of the Tape Deck?, New York Times

“A set of more obvious examples of hardware becoming software. These have changed the entire music industry.” (thanks Chris)

hardware is software music