October 2012 I wrote a blog post “Where innovation flourishes?”. After two and a half years it is time to go back and see how the world has changed and to update the predictions of game changer technologies and services.
Year 2012 I believed following three ideas would become the innovations and dramatically change the future:
– Crowd funding
– Additive manufacturing referred as “3D printing”
– Peer to peer services
My predictions back in 2012 were not ground breaking nor were they fighting against the consensus, but it still feels great to see that these predictions have come true and that they are nowadays common technologies and services utilized by the masses.
Crowd funding has become ‘de facto’ way for small to medium sized companies to launch and finance new ideas and projects. Additive manufacturing is used more and more within industry and the possibilities of the technology are expanding dramatically as more materials, more precise ways of printing and cheap consumer orientated printers are introduced. Peer to peer services have also found their way into our daily lives. Über, the “taxi” service, has recently been valued over 13 billion euros and the usage of AirBnB has heavily increased.
What are the new areas of technology and services that will transform and shape the future?
As the number one game changer I would list connectivity. Since the mobile connectivity was introduced to the masses at the end of 1990’s there has been only incremental changes on how we communicate. Of course the data amounts have dramatically increased during the years and video, pictures and text have been introduced along voice communication. Why I argue that is incremental is that the communication has still been “people centrist”. This will change with the new communication technologies towards “connected world” where not only people are connected but devices as well. This is called Internet of Things, IoT. Consumer use cases are still “finding their forms” since the technology allows much more than just switching your living room lights on or off, but industries are already starting to utilize the possibilities to add value to their customers and optimize their business. I am eagerly waiting to see how this connectivity will change the means of transportation in the coming years.
Second game changer on my list is HTML5 core technology markup language. This technology is something that I hope will change the world, more than that I believe it will. Today, online services are very fragmented. Some services work well on web browser, some as iOS applications and others as Android, WebOS, Windows or Sail Fish applications. I hope the HTML5 technology would remove these silos and make more services compatible and easy to use throughout the different platforms and form factors of devices.
As the third and last item on my list I predict that trend towards mental wellbeing will increase and new technologies and services will start to blossom around it. If a little simplicity and egocentricity is allowed, the individual of early 21st century was first “measured” by technological gadgets like portable phones and computers with access to internet. Once these gadgets became available to everyone the focus of individual has changed towards individual’s physical form. Fitness has become a huge industry where services and gadgets are developed by growing number of startups as well as by most of the technology and consumer goods companies. I believe the next change will be towards mental wellbeing of the individual. In the future technology and services will be harnessed to improve our wellbeing and performance on matters like sleep, ability to concentrate and ability to measure and optimize our mental performance level. This is referred as “quantified self”.
How do you see the future and do you see potential in these three technologies and trends to dramatically change the future?