It’s hard to believe that we’re already halfway through 2019 and looking towards the future of technology in 2020. The first half of 2019 was dominated by news of cybersecurity breaches and the innovative ways that organizations are using augmented reality to showcase their products.
Marketing and technology are coming together in new and creative ways, as marketers learn to leverage the petabytes of data that are generated on a daily basis. Simply finding which data points to analyze and which to ignore is enough to keep business and marketing professionals busy for quite some time. Technology is being leveraged in new ways to not only enhance operations behind the curtain but also to provide an optimized user experience at each digital and physical touchpoint.
Roswell IT services company CEO, Marcus Nel shares 5 of the top technology trends to watch for the second half of 2019, and beyond.
1. Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning
There’s been a fair amount of hype and not-so-much action around AI and machine learning, but expect these exciting technologies to continue to bloom throughout the remainder of 2019. It takes time to build and test the software that will be capable of taking advantage of this type of tech, so it is likely to be several years before they become more mainstream. In the meantime, organizations such as SalesForce, Microsoft and Google are actively bringing AI-driven functionality to the market, so stay tuned.
2. Deeper IoT Integration
Much as with AI and ML, Internet of Things (IoT) manufacturers and dreamers have been nibbling around the edges of this emerging tech. There are plenty of smart devices on the market, but true integration between these unique hardware pieces continues to elude the market. This is likely due to challenges with merging data from disparate sources, something that will — again — simply take time to hash out. Humble Bluetooth technology is proving to be one of the most effective ways for various pieces of tech to talk, making it nearly ubiquitous for technology in the future.
3. Voice-Based Search
As the US population ages and becomes more mobile, and states increasingly adopt legislation that limits the use of mobile phones while driving, voice search is becoming one of the hot new trends for 2019. Google Home, Amazon’s Alexa and Apple’s Siri are currently dominating the voice-search market, but there are many other competitors nipping at their heels. Companies are scrambling to ensure that their websites meet the latest standards and are fully optimized for voice searching. This requires a rich field of metadata and descriptive text for images, and many websites are not quite up to snuff in terms of these requirements.
4. Digital Accessibility is Crucial
Even though web accessibility guidelines have been in place for several years, there has been a recent spate of lawsuits against large organizations whose websites, mobile apps or other digital properties are not considered fully accessible. This is a concern that’s flown under the radar for several years but is coming to the forefront as businesses are faced with multi-million dollar lawsuits and extensive fines. Revamping your website for voice search can help you lean towards accessibility for all people, but the WCAG (Web Content Accessibility Guidelines) are strict — although open to some interpretation.
5. 5G Internet
Even people in rural parts of the country — and the world — will soon benefit from ultra-high speed internet access. Businesses with digital properties that required extensive computing power and interactions were previously limited to having their software managed on-premise, but that may all change as we move towards 2020. Internet connectivity speeds are increasing dramatically, making cloud-based applications that much more appealing to business and easier for consumers to use. Fast internet may not seem like a tech advance, but this infrastructure leap is a requirement for today’s data-hungry businesses.
It’s impossible to see exactly what the future will bring, but these are some of the advances that seem to be maturing towards the last half of 2019. One thing is abundantly clear: business users, technologists and marketers are getting cozy in unprecedented ways as they all look for ways to leverage the exciting wave of future tech.