NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Maybe what your business should do this year is unclear. Speaking technologically, at least, it's clear what your firm shouldn't do.Yes, 2011 is just a few weeks old, and the early year techno-ritual of the Consumer Electronics Show just behind us. But several dangerous small-business trends lurk inside larger, legitimate business technologies such as fast 4G wireless networks from Verizon ( VZ), AT&T ( T) and Sprint ( S); fresh developments in laptops from such major makers as Samsung and Dell ( DELL); and tablet computers in the workplace from the folks at Apple ( AAPL) and Fujitsu. But I'm telling you, evil lurks here if you dare to look. Here are three of the biggest risks. Print 'em out, hang 'em up and remind yourself to step away.
|Is your flashlight on the office 4G network? Should it be? Well, no, of course not.|
New ultra-fast 4G wireless Internet access is, without question, the real, game-changing deal. But as these networks actually deploy, it turns out wireless operators have shamelessly -- and I mean shamelessly -- dug up every left-for-dead networking idea and tried to bring it back over the techno-River Styx. Just take a look at the so-called Verizon Wireless LTE Innovations Center. Here Verizon is trying breathe life into networking ghouls that have been nonstarters since the dawn of the Internet. All the classic undead are here: appliances that communicate with each other and you; body function monitoring tools that broadcast "critical" data -- that would be your weight -- back to trainers and doctors; and, I kid you not, networked flashlights, the idea being that emergency personnel can be tracked by the tools they carry. Certainly 4G has a play in the coming months. I already use these fast networks in my business. But please don't bring fancy-sounding third-party networking products or services into your shop unless you have a very good reason to do so. Most of these ideas have been the walking dead over the traditional Internet for nearly a decade, and they won't magically spring back to life over the wireless Web. Be warned.