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2018 will see the emergence of several common themes in the technology sphere, with the Internet of Things leading the pack. While we can't predict what the future may hold, we can make some educated guesses. Get ready to step into the future.
The Internet of Things
2018 will see an enormous increase in interconnected devices, such as smart locks, smart doors, and smart cars, thereby increasing the use of mobile devices to manage the separate smart gadgets. Mobile providers like Vodacom will be at the forefront of embracing new technology, such as 5G, that will help deal with this data explosion. Marketers will be watching developments closely to see how they can leverage the personal information of their customers.
Cryptocurrency becomes the foundation of the future
2018 will see the increased presence of crypocurrency and blockchain technologies. Blockchain first came to light as part of the bitcoin cryptocurrency craze as a distributed ledger system that may have significant impact across numerous industries. Combining IoT with blockchain may see the start of a whole host of new services and businesses. For example, it can be used to track shipments of pharmaceuticals, and to create smart cities in which connected heating systems better control energy use and connected traffic lights better manage rush hour.
The Artificial Intelligence Revolution
The increase in implementation of advanced artificial intelligence systems across multiple industries will be a major trend of 2018. Advanced AI has given companies the power to manage their wealth of customer data into actionable and profitable business operations. According to Forbes, businesses that wish to succeed in the future must use 'AI and machine learning… to harness the vast amounts of data being created every day on social [media], the web and everything in between.' The ability to use AI to enhance decision making, reinvent business models and ecosystems and remake the customer experience will drive business strategy throughout 2018 and beyond.
Keeping up with the Cloud
The cloud has gone mainstream and we will continue to see growth as enterprises are keen on adopting consumption-based models, rather than investing in licenses and infrastructure. Current projections forecast that by 2020, 80% of software vendors will use a consumption-based model. Services such as Managed SAP and Vodacom Cloud Marketplace enable businesses to access the latest software at a fraction of the cost of the traditional purchasing model.
Data security is one of the top challenges and cloud providers have developed stringent security solutions. A ‘cloud-first’ strategy is essential to analyse massive amounts of data and reap the benefits of automation and intelligence.
The sky's the limit
2018 will be the year when futuristic technologies like drones really begin to take off. These disruptive tech solutions will make smart cities smarter in the upcoming year by addressing issues pertaining to traffic, jobs, and advanced procedure of delivery. These devices will also help businesses streamline their methods of disaster recovery. By generating verdicts based on historical data, these intelligent devices will help businesses make critical decisions in real time.