What’s Trending in Digital Tech?
Technology continues to change and improve, and consumers across the globe feel the effects in numerous areas of their life. Digital transformation is reshaping and redefining work and play in ways that were never thought possible, but yet the tech disruptions only continue. While there are noted benefits in each of the following areas of tech trends, there is an underlying caution about getting swept away in the possibilities with a firm understanding of the threat cybersecurity now plays in a digitized world. This is why ethics, privacy, and security are listed as the first notable trend.
1. Digital Security
The ethics of technology use are still being explored, as are fool-proof ways to safeguard consumer privacy and security. As cybersecurity expert Hari Ravichandran knows, the pervasiveness of tech is only creating more complicated situations for data protection, personal safety, and economic failure. Regulatory action is on the rise in order to combat some of the negative effects technology has had around the globe. Over 40 states have passed hands-free driving laws to reduce the rate of car accidents caused by mobile phone use while driving. The European Union has outlined specific regulatory actions that will protect the storage and exchange of digital information for all companies doing business with or within the EU. While there are no comprehensive solutions on the table to address the areas of liability for a data breach, criminal charges against incited violence, or allowing access to websites or channels funded by terrorism, the conversation has been opened and it will continue to expand as tech continues to grow.
2. 5G Networks
Move over Verizon, and table your claim to fame with a 4G LTE connection. The next big thing is the 5G network. Groundwork and pilot projects confirm that 2020 should see mobile users browsing the internet on speeds that could reach up to 10 gigabytes per second. More distant projections seem to assess that 40% of the global population will be able to connect with 5G mobile network technology. This means that 1.5 billion smartphone users will be cruising the web on lightning-fast speeds from a variety of countries around the globe.
3. Artificial Intelligence (AI)
Although not a total newcomer to the tech scene, the developments in AI are going to be game-changers in a number of fields. The increased presence of AI in smartphones and uses for traffic updates and Uber fare calculations are just some of the little-recognized used of AI currently used every day. However, for countries within the EU, there is a full-speed-ahead political agenda that wants to invest billions into new AI tech and research. Smart traffic lights that analyze flow and speed of traffic are on the horizon, with the goal of reducing travel times, as are driverless cars that can reduce traffic accidents by up to 90%. You might not know this, but most commercial jets fly the majority of their flight patterns on autopilot, which is another form of AI. It is estimated the commercial Boeing flights only experience an average of seven minutes flown by the physical pilot, and this is for take-off and landing.
4. Autonomous Devices
Drones, robots, and autonomous vehicles are all a part of the innovative category entitled “autonomous things” although they rely on artificial intelligence to complete automated functions. The primary tasks were simplistic in their replication of human-performed function, but the advancements being made move beyond elementary task completion and rigid automation. New programs are incorporating advanced AI features that create more complex behaviors from the device, allowing it to interact more naturally with the user and the surrounding environment.
For a while, blockchain has been on the radar of almost every trending tech list, but this past year it has emerged from the shadows and establish its presence apart from cryptocurrency. In the defenses against cybercrime, blockchain brings extra protection when safeguarding data against manipulation. Using blockchain brings a level of transparency and validation to digital currency. Transactions conducted digitally are encrypted before being stored and shared among a network of peer-to-peer computers.
6. Augmented Analytics
Big data is becoming a foundational tool for business success, but combining it with the benefits and power of artificial intelligence, the business potential is impressive. By involving machine learning (or automated learning), the transformation in development, sharing, and consumption of data analysis will redefine business priorities. The potential growth areas are in-house applications that work with human resource needs, sales, finance, marketing, and customer support. Efficient data crunching allows companies to make more informed and strategic decisions that will improve their operations, which should have a positive effect on the economy.
There is a lot of potential on the tech horizon, and individuals all over the world stand to benefit from the advancements technology brings to healthcare, education, finance, and even politics. As longs as designers, manufacturers, and consumers remain vigilant and aware of the threat of cybercrime, the quality of life stands to improve all around the globe.