If you ask experts what they think technology will look like in the future, the answers can be a bewildering mix of predictions good enough to shame the best or the weirdest of the sci-fi movies you’ve ever seen.
Sit back and think about what you have access to right now.
How it’s going to be a few years into the future?
Pamper your imagination to see as far as you can. You are just as likely to be as imaginative a futurist as you can be.
Alvin Toffler is one of the world’s best known futurists and the author of globally-acclaimed and respected books such Future Shock, The Third Wave, and PowerShift.
Mr. Toffler would have never realized just how far his predictions would come true and even surpass his already powerful picture of how the world could be thanks to the rise of technology, the borderless world, the planet-wide e-commerce domination, and the exciting opportunities available for everyone in the world today.
As you read this, you can work normally or work remotely. Continents are connected by non-stop travel. It’s easier to trade between countries.
We are blessed with relatively more stable economies. You can accept and pay with virtual currencies. Your laptop has more power than the supercomputer did in the late 70s and your smartphone has more processing power than regular computers just a few years ago.
The juggernaut of technology is unstoppable. As such, here are a few technology predictions we are incredibly excited about in 2019 (& beyond):
It’s AI everywhere
Artificial Intelligence is an umbrella term that encompasses other types of technology such as Machine Learning, data analytics, NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming), and several others. The biggest benefit of AI is its adaptive capability and applicability to almost any industry.
The use of robots, intelligent machines, adaptive data processing, data analytics, etc., have already made a difference to manufacturing, shipping, financial services, banking, healthcare, & education.
The use of AI is all set to change customer service, sales, marketing, human resources, and several other business functions.
We predict that the AI Disruption is inevitable for your business and in your personal life.
Rise of the machines: Autonomous advancements
The world is all set to work without humans. “Autonomous” is defined as “ability to perform independently with freedom from external control or influence”.
Autonomous robots, computers, and machines can work with zero to minimal input from humans in the future using independent locomotive systems, navigational algorithms, environment sensing technology, sensors, and so much more.
We already see this in autonomous, self-driven cars and buses. That’s only the beginning.
Cars can drive themselves.Say hello to Google’s Waymo
Drones will deliver groceries and other items to your doorstep .
Drones can help spot Illegal fishing
With the onslaught of IoT (Internet of Things), we already see the ability to use key fobs to drive vehicles out of tight spots, assisted parking, assisted vehicle reversing, home appliances that communicate with your watches and smartphones and more.
Autonomous tech, robotics, and the IoT — it’ll change the way you use and interact with machines.
Blockchain comes to dominate
Some technologies hold promise but struggle to take off. As John Biggs of TechCrunch reports , thousands of cryptocurrency projects are already dead.
Despite that, Blockchain — the backbone technology behind Cryptocurrency and several other use cases and applications — is far from dead. It’s just the beginning.
According to The Forbes Technology Council, Blockchain can very well be the backbone of data models and data distribution on-premise or across global data centers.
Blockchain powered Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT) will replace corporate government systems to finally push us all from paper-based systems to digitization.
Standardization of Interoperability, new standards of collaboration, new variants of cryptocurrency, healthcare information exchange, transparency across industries, autonomous negotiation, standardized and easy trade, and Blockchain-based security are just a few of the promises that Blockchain has for all of us.
We already see how machine learning just gets better at spotting instances of fraud. We already experience additional layers of cybersecurity on the Internet, with the devices we use, and more.
Industries like banking, financial, software, SaaS, mobile apps, and literally everything you touch and work with on a daily basis has elements of cybersecurity taking shape.
Paypal, for instance, compares millions of global transactions and precisely distinguishes between legitimate and fraudulent transactions by using machine learning to fight money laundering.
In the future, you’ll see more instances and use cases of Cyber Security such as Sandboxing, encryption, authentication, network security, and secure coding.
We’ll see the growing importance of robust internal controls and security by design. We’ll benefit from defensive computing, exhaustive audit trails, data centers will have more physical security, better security infrastructure, continuous monitoring, and more.
Facebook, data breaches, & the exposed “you”
Machines get smarter. Computers think, analyze, make decisions, and perform. Everything you need is available online. There’s a mobile app for anything you want to do. Businesses benefit from all forms of smart technology. Marketing, recruiting, sales, management, and operations are all digital now.
Nothing is all bed of roses as we increasingly depend on technology. The recent Cambridge Analytica fiasco, the fact that companies like Facebook are making your data open to publishers and advertisers, and that Google tracks every location you’ve ever been to (as long as you carry your Android device) are all grim reminders of the ill effects of technology.
Twitter is still trying to stay afloat while losing around $2 billion since it went public.
Facebook reels from the aftermath of increasing accusations of lack of data privacy, Pinterest is yet to get its grounding, and even large companies like LinkedIn suffer from data breaches and attacks.
For companies, governments, and individuals, we only see a complex web of dynamics between users, businesses, and data storage and information processing.
Death of the traditional marketing
Marketing has changed. So much that if you still depend on posters, flyers, business cards, billboards on the roadside, newspapers, magazines, and the television, you are as good as dead.
Marketing has gone completely digital. New age demands for businesses include sound content marketing strategies, smart sales funnels, advertising on digital platforms (such as Facebook and Google), tapping into billions of opportunities in the form of advertising inventory on mobile, etc.
Even that, however, is not without its own challenges. At the time of writing this, the competition for every piece of content you produce is increasing.
Most of your ad spend on digital advertising is wasted: Partly due to the fact that you do it all wrong and partly because of bots ruining everything for us.
Even for those with a solid marketing & content strategy, there’s the problem of the balancing act between “people expecting everything for free” and “monetization”.
Sam Harris is a Neuroscientist, philosopher, and a best selling author. He has a popular podcast that’s already doing what all businesses should do.
But there are problems. New kind of problems.
Sam Harris’s podcast, for instance, boasts of over 1 million downloads and grew purely from organic growth by releasing one or two, 2-hr episodes each week.
Sam Harris follows the mantra “Publishing is community” and that if you don’t know your audience, you are screwed.
Despite his fresh approach to building a community, making a difference, producing content regularly, and the fact that he has built a community, he feels that ads can ruin everything he’s built.
“I hate what ads have done to digital media” and
“The advertising model is responsible for almost everything that’s wrong online”
So, we beg to ask Sam: How is he going to make money? He’ll still need to ask his podcast listeners for support.
More content creators will face this issue with the balancing act between the need to monetize and the simultaneous need to provide value. Meanwhile, it’s even more imperative that businesses take the route of content marketing, brand strategy, inbound marketing strategy, and paid advertising to survive.
It’s not going to get any easier for entrepreneurs and business. Despite the huge increase in opportunities, it’s a whole new direction for businesses.
Mobile first. Always Mobile.
Think of job opportunities, business opportunities for entrepreneurs, the way you communicate, and how you are compelled to present content. Imagine how things have changed from slapping together some HTML to make a website to the almost stringent standards and frameworks to build websites that are built “mobile first”.
Everything, at the time of this writing, has gone mobile already. This includes almost all of the 6+ billion people on earth (not just US, UK, and other developed nations).
If you have a smartphone, you have pure economic power in your hands. You can start and run a business using nothing but your phone, you can trade global currencies, and you can conduct business transactions overseas.
As such, most things you do will start and end with mobile. If you are a business, your customers are on mobile. If you are an individual, you’ll connect with other businesses on mobile.
But then, this isn’t’ even new anymore. Here’s what is going to happen: If the mobile usage and impact is at 80%, it’ll inch closer to 90% or more.
Are you mobile enough?
Big data gets bigger
Global population increases continuously and more people are getting online. The sheer number of people and everything that centers around people — including individuals themselves, businesses, governments — will only phenomenally increase the amount of data we give away and store.
For businesses and governments, it’s a lot more data to process, store and analyze.
Big data only gets bigger.
As an industry and as a phenomena, it’s incomprehensible just as exponentially big it can get. Cisco reports that by 2020, data center storage capacity worldwide will grow to 1.8 ZB (up from 382 EB in 2015) — and that’s 5X growth.
More people. More data storage. More data analytics. More data processing. Much larger infrastructure to handle everything to do with data. More computing power.
Say hello to the data-driven future.
We know it’s a lot to digest. But what can we say?
At FP, we are thrilled about all these technological advances waiting for us in the future. Given the opportunities available to us as entrepreneurs, the rise of tech, and the increasing need to really connect with your audiences is going to push you into a complete new way of doing business.
Embracing technology, riding the evolving wave of entrepreneurship, Integrity, honesty, a certain radical degree of openness, and empathetic thinking will play a huge role in your entrepreneurial success.