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Tech Trends 2018: A look forward

02 Jan 2018


Tech Trends 2018. This is looking to be another exciting year. It’s likely to deliver technology change and innovation at a greater pace than we have ever seen. This pace, makes it very hard to predict what is around the corner. But based on existing trends, we know there will be some key themes to watch out for in 2018. I believe the following will be key:

Mark Skelton6 top tech themes for 2018

  • 1. The continued push of AI automation in the workplace
  • 2. Blockchain will become even more powerful
  • 3. IoT will become more widespread
  • 4. Virtual Reality will go mainstream
  • 5. Public Cloud providers will continue to grow
  • 6. GDPR legislation will make us more accountable for data

AI Automation in the Workplace

In my 2017 Tech Round Up, I mentioned the push for AI is gathering place in the consumer world. Moving into 2018 I feel it will proliferate more within the Enterprise.

As we find innovative ways to use AI, it will give more and more businesses a competitive advantage. Businesses will be reliant on this technology to make key decisions but also influence their customers. We already know social media can influence political campaigns. I believe in 2018, we will start to see similar techniques used to influence customer behaviours in retail and even legal cases.

2018 the year of Cryptocurrency?

Blockchain is a big emerging technology. It’s spawning a new currency with Bitcoin and changing how ledgers in organisations are run and managed. In 2018, we will see new use cases for block chain. Whether it is distributing medicine or tracking land ownership, there are plenty of ideas out there. On a similar theme, we are seeing Bitcoin rise out of the dark web and become a true currency. In 2018, it is likely companies will offer Bitcoin payments for paying salaries or even buying goods. This will move it towards becoming a true global currency.

Virtual Reality to become part of everyday life

Virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) solutions are hitting the consumer world and becoming more accessible. I believe in 2018 we will see increased use of VR in everyday life. Retail organisations are already starting to use it to help influence purchasing decisions. Ikea, for example, offer an app that allows you to “virtually” place products in your home using augmented reality. This type of use case scenario is likely to grow. We will see enterprises start to use VR in the workplace for different tasks – from training scenarios to modelling products.

The continued rise of Public Cloud

Public Cloud is no new thing; we have been exposed to it for a while. In 2017 we saw the use of Public Cloud for production systems. This will continue to rise in 2018. We will see the big players, AWS, Azure, Google and Alibaba, continue to grow as platforms. (In fact, these four, I feel, will step further away from other Public Cloud platforms.) What is likely throughout 2018, is the move from these clouds being consumed for traditional IaaS based solutions, to companies looking to tap into their PaaS offerings. Some companies are doing this today; but the large majority are still only focusing on IaaS. Public Cloud PaaS offerings are where business can really benefit from innovation to drive better business solutions. More companies will realise this in 2018, as they move towards AI, IoT and big data solutions.

Data protection legislation

2018 is the year that GDPR legislation comes into play. We have known about this one for a while. But I still find it interesting how little attention this has got from many organisations. With the proliferation of data, protecting your organisation against this new legislation can be challenging. I suspect we will see some big headlines in 2018 as companies fall foul of not protecting their personal identifiable data correctly. In addition, I think we will see the continued rise in cyber security attacks. Cyber security is the new battle ground. And as we saw in 201, we will all be impacted in some way by more attacks throughout 2018.

So, are you ready for 2018? I don’t think any of us can truly say we know everything that will hit us in the year ahead. What I have listed here are just things I see as top of my mind. There will without doubt be other things that arise in the tech world in 2018, that none of us anticipated. What we can say with certainty, it will be another year when we all need to embrace change, and make the most of all the innovation happening around us.

Tools like our Enablement Framework can help design and implement a solution that will meet your needs today and allow room for expansion as the tech landscape changes.

If you’d like to discuss and of the tech trends 2018 detailed in my post, or you’d like to discuss your 2018 IT strategy in general, I'd be happy to help.

Mark Skelton

About the author

Mark Skelton

Head of Consultancy

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