The world around us is changing. In labs and living rooms around
the world, people are creating new technologies and finding new applications
for existing and emerging technologies. The products and services
available to everyone thus expand exponentially every year. In the
next five years, then, you can expect massive growth in what we can
do. Three areas in particular will provide important
1. Augmented Reality Will Explode
Technology mavens have talked for years about virtual reality
and the applications available. Augmented reality is related, but
allows us to lay the virtual world over the real world. Games like
Pokemon Go provide examples of how this works; you use technology
to "see" virtual creatures and items in real spaces.
Beyond fun and games, this technology provides a wealth of
planning potential. You can drive your car, and arrows will appear
on your road, guiding you to the right path. You can create visual
representations of organizing tasks, building endeavors, and almost
anything else that you want to see before you start working.
Manuals will virtually overlay real items to be joined together
– everyone will actually be able to construct an Ikea bed.
The technology is here; ways to use it are just beginning to
2. Mobile Apps Will Decline
At the same time, the ubiquitous world of mobile apps will begin
to slip back. The ways in which we connect to the world often
require us to work through a smartphone or tablet. The mobile app
ties us to devices; you have no doubt seen rooms full of people who
never make eye contact, only staring at small screens. The cost of
developing sophisticated apps and the marketing efforts needed to
place your App on the most expensive "real estate" in the
world, does not always give a return on investment.
3. The Internet of Things Will Grow Exponentially
Availability and affordability of connected devices grow each
year. We connect massive data networks to our homes, vehicles, and
personal health monitors already. The ability to connect more
devices, appliances, and objects to these networks means companies
will know more about those they serve than ever before. Almost any
device with electronic components can be configured for the IoT, and
in the next five years, more will.
Originally published December 8, 2016
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