In recent years, there have been rapid advances in technology, most of which are set to change the world. Although some of these are yet to reach widespread use, most are now commercially available and their adoption will have a profound effect on our future. Here are the top four trends in modern technology that are worth keeping an eye on.
1. The Internet of Things (IoT) and smart devices
The IoT – which mainly encompasses smart, inter-connected products like smartwatches and smartphones – is a major factor contributing to the exponential data increase. This is because our smart devices gather data constantly, connect to other devices and share the data without human intervention.
Almost everything can be smart. From smart cars, freezers, washing machines, smart heating controls, smart lighting and remote door locks; everything that can be programmed, connected to the internet and controlled using a mobile device. The IoT revolution has just begun, and according to current statistics, there will be over 75 billion inter-connected devices in the next decade.
2. Artificial Intelligence (AI) for Everybody
Modern computers equipped with AI capabilities can learn and make practical decisions. This has been made possible by increased data and computing power, such that machines can now handle human tasks more efficiently.
So far, tech and e-Commerce giants like Microsoft, Baidu, Amazon, Google, and Apple have placed artificial intelligence on their strategic front. All these companies are dominating the AI world by developing platforms and tools that will steer this revolution, and more so fuel its adoption to the economy.
Apart from driving innovations in cloud technology, AI has the potential to transform sectors such as product and service delivery, medicine, energy, and manufacturing.
3. Blockchain Technology
Blockchain technology is an invention set to change the world by providing practical solutions to the widespread problem of storing, protecting and authenticating data access. A blockchain is simply a decentralized, highly secure database. Technically, it is a distributed, peer-to-peer (P2P) ledger of records. Although nothing has been hack-proof, blockchain technology is a huge leap in data security. The whole blockchain is self-managed and has no point-of-failure.
The insurance, healthcare and financial sectors are some of the few areas that blockchains are and will continue to disrupt. A practical example is that over 90 percent of major world banks are exploring blockchain-related solutions such as cryptocurrencies in service delivery.
4. Virtual secretaries and Digital Assistants
Although secretaries play a crucial role in every business, they spend a lot of their time working on relatively trivial and time-consuming tasks that could be easily automated. Virtual secretaries and digital assistants are game-changing technologies that will change how companies work.
In the coming years, we will see machines complete most day-to-day business planning tasks. The role of digital assistants will go beyond organizing people’s diaries and scheduling meetings- they will help project managers in assembling the right teams and allocating tasks so that jobs are completed efficiently. It is time we embrace the rise of virtual assistants and automate as many tasks as possible for optimum productivity.
Thanks to recent advances in technology, our future is here – what remains is thinking how best we can reshape it.