In case you missed it, Gartner recently identified the technology trends over the next three years which will impact marketing, individuals, businesses and IT organizations. Here is some contest and a summary of the new technology trends impacting marketing:
Technology Trends – Computing Everywhere
The term Computing Everywhere is sometimes referred to as ubiquitous computing, meaning computing anywhere and everywhere. The old paradigm was Tethered Computing (a user worked on a desktop computer or back in the day a “terminal”) Today a user can utilize any device (smartphone, tablet, laptop, desktop – basically anything a chip resides in—even a car or fridge), in any location (beyond ethernet or wifi) and in any format.
According to digital market research firm eMarketer, the number of smartphone users globally – any age and using the phone at least once a month- is expected to reach two billion by 2016.* This, coupled with the advancements in smartphone technology, will drive manufacturers of phones, phone services and goods and services in general to focus on the user experience.
Technology Trends – The Internet of Things (IoT)
The Internet of Things (IoT) is the global network of things (electronics, software, sensors and connectivity) that creates value for users and manufacturers, i.e. the whole product or service eco-system.) This value is created through bi-directional flows of data and information with the manufacturer, connected devices and users. Each and every thing in the global network is uniquely identifiable through its embedded computing system and can interoperate within the web.
As technology continues to penetrate all aspects of our lives, the Internet of Things is expected to constantly expand. Things may include patient monitoring, automobiles, police and thermostats, manufacturing, field operations, etc. As this expansion continues, the expectation is that huge amounts of data will be generated that will drive big data and analytics.
It is estimated that the IoT will consist of almost 50 billion objects by 2020.
Technology Trends -3D Printing
3D Printing refers to any process used to make a 3D object. Based on a 3D model and under computer control, original 3D Printing produces multiple layers of material onto a powder bed with inkjet print heads, in almost any shape.
As with most technologies, the cost of 3D printing is expected to decrease over the next three years which would lead to increased demand and market growth as well as attract low cost competition. Industrial, biomedical and consumer applications are the key areas targeted to fuel demand.
Technology Trends – Advanced, Pervasive, Invisible Analytics
The Internet of Things (embedded devices and data) will provide yet another wave of growth for analytics. Infinite pools of structured and unstructured data inside and outside of organizations will continue to be created. Gartner argues that all apps need to have analytics built-in.
Analytics can be simply stated as the discovery and communication of meaningful patterns in data. Analytics encompasses a variety of statistical techniques from modeling, machine learning, and data mining that analyze current and historical facts. Because analytics often deals with vast amounts of data, data visualization is critical to communicate efficiently and effectively. Organizations often apply analytics to data to describe, predict and improve business performance.
IDC expects the worldwide business analytics software market to reach $59B in 2018.
Technology Trends – Context-Rich Systems
Users require systems that are context-rich which is a far cry from a user simply completing a task. Systems need to be designed around the user experience, requiring that a system is aware of a user’s role (who are they) and the environment around them (what are they trying to accomplish and why).
While the focus has been on user experience and design, the context has not been placed center stage as of yet. Content Marketing is all about providing relevant, meaningful and engaging content and how this concept must trickle down to context-rich systems.
Context-rich systems are systems that identify a number of diverse signals about the user and their context (location, weather, device), and dynamically adapt to serve the specific user and need. Context-rich systems adjust content, display and input methods based on the user’s specific situation at a specific point of time based on a specific set of criteria.
Technology Trends -Smart Machines
In general, Smart Machines are intelligent devices that use machine-to-machine (M2M) technology. Smart machines include robots, self-driving cars and other cognitive computing systems that are able to make decisions and solve problems without human intervention.
Analysts predict that smart machines will be disruptive because of their corresponding effects on society. Organizations believe that smart machines will offer a competitive advantage by enabling more efficient manufacturing processes which will lead to higher profit margins.
Analytics and context-rich systems are expected to drive smart machines. Advanced algorithms will increase the need for systems to learn for themselves and act upon those learnings. Gartner notes that machine helpers will continue to evolve from the existing prototypes for autonomous vehicles, advanced robots, virtual personal assistants and smart advisors. The analysis goes on to speculate that the smart machine era will be the most disruptive in the history of IT.
Technology Trends – Cloud Computing Architecture
Cloud Computing Architecture refers to the components and subcomponents required for cloud computing. These components typically consist of a front-end, plus back-end platforms for a cloud-based delivery and a network. Integrated, these components and subcomponents make up a cloud computing architecture.
Mobile computing and cloud computing will continue to converge. Analysts expect this will lead to the growth of centrally coordinated applications delivered to any device. Gartner predicts that cloud computing is the foundation of scalable, self-service computing for both internally and externally facing applications. The benefits for applications that effectively use intelligence and storage of client devices will be lower bandwidth costs.
Technology Trends – Software-Defined Infrastructure and Applications
Software Defined Infrastructure is typically defined as a technical computing infrastructure entirely under the control of software where there is no operator or human intervention. It is the ability to define application requirements from the infrastructure (both functional and non-functional requirements) and have the landscape automatically created. Typical deployments require Software Defined Networking (SDN) and cloud capabilities as a minimal point of entry.
Many leading analysts believe that agile development methods for the programming of everything from infrastructure basics to applications is essential for organizations to deliver the flexibility required to make the digital business work. This argument is based on the maturation of SDN, storage, data centers and security. Gartner notes that in order to deal with the rapidly changing demands of digital business with negative and positive demand shifts, computing must move away from static to dynamic models.
IDC expects the worldwide SDN market for the enterprise and cloud service provider segments grow to over $8B by 2018.
Technology Trends – Web-Scale IT
Web-Scale IT is an architectural approach to cloud adoption that improves workflow automation and operational efficiency, reduces costs and increases profits. It evolved from the computing world and addresses the complexity of how to approach and improve proficiency of big data across technology data centers, databases, software platforms and operating systems in large environments of enterprise IT.
Gartner predicts that more companies will think, act, and build applications and infrastructure in the same way that technology stalwarts like Amazon, Google and Facebook do. An evolution towards Web-Scale IT is predicted as commercial hardware platforms embrace the new models and cloud-optimized and software-defined methods become mainstream.
Technology Trends – Risk-Based Security and Self-Protection
The principle behind Risk-Based Security is that to improve security, the first step is to realize and accept that nothing is or ever can be 100% secure. Someone, somewhere will always leave their password on a sticky note, or in their journal, send it in an email or provide it to a friend or colleague. Others, in an attempt not to forget their password, will use the same password for everything. For whatever reason, the hard but unnerving truth is that over the long term, nothing is or will ever be 100% secure.
As such, security will remain an important consideration. Recognizing that perimeter defense – attempting to protect everything inside one’s network with passwords and firewalls – is inadequate. It leads to applications taking a more active role in security, which in turn leads to a multi-faceted approach. Gartner points out security-aware application design, dynamic and static application security testing, and runtime application self-protection — combined with active context-aware and adaptive access controls — will all be necessary.