9 Implausible Tech Products For 2015 - InformationWeek

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12/9/2014
08:36 AM
Thomas Claburn
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9 Implausible Tech Products For 2015

Technology sometimes pushes the boundaries of usefulness and good taste. We're pushing back with these nine outrageous (and bogus) products due out in 2015.

8 Classic Video Games Begging For Tablet Versions
8 Classic Video Games Begging For Tablet Versions
(Click image for larger view and slideshow.)

The year 2015 will bring us a variety of novel and interesting products and services, as have many years gone by. There will be more wearables than anyone knows what to do with, the Apple Watch, and countless mobile phones, computers, and peripherals. We live at a time of remarkable technology.

Other innovations will never come to be, such as the hideous MacBook imagined by The Onion. That's something to celebrate -- the market's resistance to bad ideas. Take a moment to be glad for the absence of such an atrocity.

Following are nine other scary products and services you won't see next year, because they come straight from my twisted imagination. But perhaps they're close enough to reality to seem strangely familiar, or to suggest an improbable entrepreneurial opportunity. Don't worry, though. They'll probably never be made. But it's fun to imagine and shudder. If you have your own improbable product dancing in your head this holiday, please share it with us in the comments section.

[Unfortunately, this useless app actually exists. Read Geekend: Starbucks Order Ahead App? No, Thanks.]

1. Google Chrome Auto-Surf
Traversing the web can be a headache, not to mention a way to aggravate carpal tunnel syndrome. Google has an answer: Chrome Auto-Surf, a browser extension that searches the web and visits websites on your behalf. Google knows so much about you already that it can predict where you want to go, the ads that pique your interest, and the products you want to buy. Install Chrome Auto-Surf today and lean back while Google does your surfing, shopping, and socializing for you.

2. Apple iPhone 7 Plu$
Inspired by the success of the Apple Watch Edition collection, Apple iPhone 7 Plu$ takes communication to a whole new level and price. iPhone 7 Plu$ is the biggest, most expensive iPhone yet. Measuring 7.11 inches tall by 3.49 inches wide, the gold-plated iPhone 7 Plu$ starts at $2,299 without a contract. Because it's too large for most pockets, Apple is also introducing Apple Pocket$, reinforced custom sleeves for iPhone 7 Plu$ than can be mounted on clothing or stowed in any Apple-approved handbag, backpack, or suitcase. The sleeves themselves are free, but installation by anyone other than an Apple Store Fabric Genius ($49 per hour, appointment required) will void the warranty for the sleeve and any device placed within.

3. Firefox Fastlane
Forget the open Internet and net neutrality. It was never going to work. In 2015, Mozilla plans to cash in with a commercially oriented version of its popular browser. Firefox Fastlane will feature a new pay-to-play search engine that auctions search queries to the highest bidder. Search results without a sponsor will not be displayed at all. This will make the Internet much easier to understand. Firefox Fastlane will have superior content, thanks to crippling DRM. No more "View Source." No more copying, pasting, or saving. Just high-value entertainment from leading media companies. In conjunction with Internet access partners such as AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon, Firefox Fastlane will cache all incoming content and spool it out slowly, while offering faster delivery for a fee through a PayPal-linked "Click Here To Pay For Better Service" button. Future versions of Firefox Fastlane will make premium content even more expensive with the addition of congestion-based pricing.

4. Microsoft Hot Surface
To answer critics who argue that tablet-laptop hybrids just don't work, Microsoft plans to introduce Hot Surface, its fourth Surface device and its first portable cooking device.

(Image: The Windows Club)

Hot Surface transforms touch-based interaction with temperature. It allows you to flame Internet trolls while toasting sandwiches on its display. Its scalding exterior also serves as a potent theft deterrent. Microsoft Hot Surface

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Thomas Claburn has been writing about business and technology since 1996, for publications such as New Architect, PC Computing, InformationWeek, Salon, Wired, and Ziff Davis Smart Business. Before that, he worked in film and television, having earned a not particularly useful ... View Full Bio
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Shane M. O'Neill
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Shane M. O'Neill,
User Rank: Author
12/9/2014 | 10:17:45 AM
The implausible dream
I would be seriously excited if my Surface Pro could also whip up a grilled cheese sandwich. Chrome Auto Surf is a brilliant idea. It would give me more time to auto-read and auto-watch tv.
Laurianne
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Laurianne,
User Rank: Author
12/9/2014 | 9:22:52 AM
Re: #4
I never considered a laptop or hybrid tablet as a panini maker. Brilliant.
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