Hard trends currently in place are expected to make 2014 the beginning of a technology revolution. Changes in how we sell, market, innovate, educate and communicate will be shaped by notable industry advancements. Therefore, anticipating these developments is imperative in maintaining a competitive edge. This new era of technology-enabled innovation is a collaborative movement optimized around us with cutting edge solutions that most can’t yet fathom. Follow along as we dive into the hazy digital future with these 2014 predictions…
Learning to Share
P2P is officially recognized as a valid business model to most B2B models as the physical and digital world converge. Technology has now infiltrated into everyone’s job, making it a vital aspect in the deployment of new services and business opportunities. It will continue to aid labor at a faster rate, whether it be a physical or digital trade. Advancements are showing us what is possible and in return our attitudes are changing. A great digital experience is no longer nice to have but expected.
For instance, older generations may find it odd to have a random vagabond sleeping on your couch, but companies like Airbnb have created a brand new association with the way we look at P2P business models, developing a system where everyone prospers and creating a brand new realm of opportunity. We’ll continue to see more and more P2P incentivized startups like CouchSurfing, Uber and Venmo.
As these collaborative movements continue, just don’t get lost in the buzz and remember the business basics. A new dilemma is forming in larger companies, especially those in the social space, which scale to market to everyone. Businesses will struggle with their identity as they become all-inclusive. Companies are trying to cater to everyone and as a result losing resonance with their core customers.
Facebook is a great example of this inclination. First targeting college students, then younger generations, and now Grandma. Losing focus on their initial target market has saturated user interest making Facebook increasingly unpopular among younger generations. In 2014, plan to see this transformation of social, virtual and mobile technology continue to impact how we connect with people and do business on all levels.
Less Is More
We also intend on seeing more mainstream products reinvented, however with less resources and ultimately optimizing to make our lives simpler. Notice how everything is getting smaller, skinnier, lighter and smarter? It’s just the beginning. Applications like Coin, a credit card service that connects all the information from individual cards to one simple device, slimming down wallets everywhere. Coin also has a smartphone security function that sends an alert whenever the device is out of range providing less stress and less waste.
Bose also did a great job of slimming down with the new SoundLink Mini speaker. A Bluetooth compatible, small in size but large in sound system. Quality proprietary technologies combined with an innovative driver configuration delivers that legendary Bose bass in a quarter of the size. Better sound and smart technology at its finest.
Voice & Motion
It has arrived! Computers get a sixth sense using voice and motions capabilities to develop more elegant products. Subaru has released the Eyesight Driver Assist technology, which reacts to conditions even before the driver. By using two motion cameras, the car will sound an alert along with a visual warning if it senses danger of collision by applying the brakes automatically when necessary. It also monitors traffic and optimizes cruise control speeds to increase gas mileage.
It is projected that smart interaction will change the way we experience routine activities, so forget the good old days without cellphones, as technology is and will be even more intertwined with our everyday lives. Watching TV, for instance, now requires even less effort after the introduction of Samsung’s smart TV designed with motion control, voice control and face recognition features.
Lost the remote? No problem, just say hi and wake up the TV. It will turn on, recognize the viewer’s face and find the latest episode of Game of Thrones so conveniently recorded via smart device at work earlier that day. Advances as such are expected to grow aiming to improve efficiency of menial tasks.
Hyper Efficiency Revolution
The trend of saving resources, increased proficiency and lazier humans is forming what we like to call a “hyper efficiency revolution,” by getting the most value from an asset before it is outdated. Factories are more efficient, co-working spaces are revitalizing old buildings and car sharing is the new method of transportation. It is no longer financially feasible to waste assets. Not that it ever was, but luckily advancements are compensating to conserve and preserve the life of goods and resources.
Companies like Nike are reviving craft and skill by combining advanced materials and 3D printing to change the way we think of mass-production. This includes more proficient machines that provide widespread customization and consumer driven style.
Airbnb is officially a member of the billion-dollar club and still several pitches away from reaching the summit. An e-commerce business that connects buyers and sellers to rent apartments, homes, tents, tree houses, boats, parking spaces and even countries! Yes, the country of Liechtenstein is now available on Airbnb including six Austrian villages, three German towns and one Swiss ski resort.
Nest, the next generation thermostat and smoke alarm system is another type of reactive technology we’re beginning to see. It was created by Tony Fadell, former Apple executive, improving regular energy needs by implementing advanced software that syncs with our daily habits. The device is smartphone accessible with a self-programed personalized heating and cooling function proven to lower bills by up to 20 percent. A recent release of a smoke alarm system provides similar instantaneous functions to monitor the safety of our homes even when we’re away.
The possibilities are endless. Specific trends of customer driven interactive tech can be seen in each of the latest innovations. It will be interesting to grow with the Information Age as life these shifting milestones are introduced. Technology is better optimizing itself to better accommodate our livelihood and becoming a part of our everyday existence, as products like Google Glass and Samsung Galaxy Gear provide the first wave of wearable devices.
It’s not too far off that that we could very well be implanting nanotech devices into our bodies only to find Morpheus popping out of our Smart TV’s asking …