Trends… 2013 and 2014
Predicting trends is never fun or easy. Choose the wrong path and you can lose time and treasure… you can even fail as a business. However, hit the trend as it is starting and you can dominate your field and crush your competitors. We at Uncommon have taken a quick look at 2013 to see which trends gathered the most momentum… and we took a long look at 2014 to try to see which trends will dominate the year.
We list here for you the top 5 trends of 2013… how did your company do in keeping up with the times?
Mobile Device Battles
2013 saw the true battle of the mobile device wars. Microsoft came out with the Surface Tablet to combat Apple’s iPad, and the Windows Phone saw an increase in market share even as Apple continued to dominate. Amazon, in an attempt to keep up, released the Kindle HDX 7 promoting more speed, more pixels, and less weight. Microsoft also released the Windows8 operating system which is specifically designed to work across multiple devices, including the entire mobile ecosystem.
Mobile Apps and HTML5
Application design and development radically changed in 2013 with the explosion of mobile devices and HTML5. Applications are easily designed in native and Web applications, but web and native applications represent two very different approaches. However, using the same code base of HTML5, the emergence of hybrid Web/native environments is driving standardization of the new mobile application offerings.
The Cloud came into its own in 2013 with online applications and services transforming the consumer technology market and those online offerings became the “locations” where users stored content and accessed personal, business, and government services. With OneDrive, Microsoft has improved its standing as a personal cloud provider and others have offered platform-agnostic personal cloud services.
The Internet of Everything (IoE)
The Internet of Things refers to objects in the world being uniquely identifiable and virtually represented in an internet-like data structure. If all objects and people in daily life were equipped with identifiers, they could be managed and inventoried by computers. The early representation of this was barcodes… however, in 2013, technology for IoE spread to radio-frequency identification (RFID), near field communications, QR codes, and digital watermarking. The IoE enabled a wide range of business innovation in 2013 from supply chain management to sales effectiveness.
Hybrid IT and Cloud Computing
Hybrid IT systems became more complex and cloud computing continued to evolve in 2013. New technologies continued to emerge to support the dynamic creation of cloud services due to the nexus forces of mobile and cloud, which are closely related, forced the continued evolution because many mobile apps and solutions exploit cloud services.
Five other trends of 2013 are notable for their contribution for changing the technology landscape. These are technologies that are less well known by the consumer, but are definitely being felt by the IT community.
- Strategic Big Data
- Actionable Analytics
- In-Memory Computing (IMC)
- Integrated Ecosystems
- Enterprise App Stores
So, how did your organization stack up in 2013? Are you in front of the crowd, or playing catch up?
Don’t fear… lucky for us, predicting 2014 is not that hard. 2013 was a time of massive change for technology. The trends that emerged and took root are merely the start of the transformation process. Those trends are not easily derailed. This means that most of our predictions for the upcoming year follow the trends of last year… with a few surprises thrown in.
Mobile Device Diversity and Management
Organizations will have to spend more time and money on proper management of mobile devices. One of the main issues with the “bring your own device” (BYOD) movement is the expansion of the mobile workforce. This expansion is putting a huge strain on IT. Enterprise policies need to expand and define the use of company and personal owned devices used in the business place.
Mobile Apps and Applications
HTML5 will continue to drive business to adopt the browser as a mainstream enterprise application. Developers will increasingly focus on creating expanded user interface models to include richer voice and video that will connect people in new a different ways. (Keep in mind things like Microsoft’s Lync or Apple’s Facetime phone call.) Apps (smaller and more targeted) will continue to grow while applications (more comprehensive software) will continue to shrink. As apps grow, developers will continue to create them in such a way to allow small apps to be “snapped together” to provide for larger application environments.
Internet of Everything (IoE)
Like 2013, the Internet of Things will continue to expand. Before this trend, the internet was made up of PCs, laptops, tablets, and phones. Now things like cars, televisions, watches, and even refrigerators are connected to the internet. This trend will continue to develop into a more complex environment that will include the 4 basic models of the internet: people, things, information, and places. Enterprises and technology vendors will need to do more exploration of the possibilities of the expanded internet by digitizing the most important products, services, and assets. This combination of data streams and services create the foundation for IoE by producing the four basic usage models: manage, monetize, operate, and extend.
Combining personal clouds, external private clouds, and public clouds will grow to become the norm for technology in 2014. Small and mid-size business are already making this “the new normal” by utilizing offerings such as Office365. However, more large scale enterprises will need to begin building out their infrastructures with a hybrid future in mind and make sure future integration/interoperability is possible. This new model will give rise to the Cloud Service Broker (CSB) which will handle aggregation, integration, and customization of services. In the beginning, we will see a fairly static hybrid environment (such as integration between internal private cloud hosting data and an public cloud service for specific use of the data), but as time goes on we should see a more dynamic ecosystem allowing complex and fluid environments (such as Private IaaS that leverages external service providers based on policy and utilization).
The cloud/client architecture structure is competitive “point of view” philosophy. On the one side is the client-centric approach where the client is a rich application running on an Internet-connected device, and the server is a set of application services hosted in an increasingly elastically scalable cloud computing platform. The other philosophy is a cloud-centric approach where the cloud is the control point and system or record and applications can span multiple client devices. With the increasingly complex demands of mobile users, the argument to the cloud-centric philosophy is tipping the scales. Users will continue to demand increasing amounts of server-side computing and storage to enable their mobility to be more effective and efficient.
Some other trends that we expect in 2014 hold a few surprises and we suggest that you keep your ears open for the following buzzwords:
- Personal Cloud Era
- Software Defined Anything (SDx)
- Web-Scale IT
- Smart Machines
- 3-D Printing
These are the top trends that we expect to emerge/continue in 2014. Reading the descriptions, we believe that you will understand how these technologies fit into your organization… however, we encourage you to contact us if you would like to take a deeper look into emerging technologies and how your business can take advantage of them.