With advancements in technology occurring daily, there are lots of exciting things to look forward to in 2014. Here, we take a look at some of the biggest trends that analysts are forecasting this year.
With the buzz surrounding Amazon’s proposed drone delivery service, expect the conversation about drone technology to continue. While it doesn’t appear that a consensus will occur in 2014, it’s believed that retail operations and delivery services will press the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to consider the possibility of allowing drones in our airspace.
Web of Things (WoT)
You’ve probably heard of the Internet of Things (IoT) which allows objects to be seamlessly integrated into their environment (see our post). Some examples are smart thermostats, smart lighting, and smart appliances. In 2014, expect to hear more about the Web of Things (WoT). An evolution of the IoT, the WoT explores how objects that contain embedded devices are integrated into the web.
More and more, people are becoming increasingly concerned about their online privacy. Reasons for this are multi-fold. For one thing, social media users are reporting negative experiences online like bullying and stolen pictures. The NSA leaks further exasperated people’s privacy concerns. Expect that going forward, there will be more privacy protection companies and services. Additionally, there will be an influx of social media platforms that offer an experience grounded in anonymity.
Cloud computing—a reference to storing and accessing data and programs over the Internet, rather than using local servers or desktops—is a scalable infrastructure that will experience continued growth in 2014. In 2011, corporate spending on third-party-managed and public-cloud environments was $28 billion. IDC expects that number to grow to more than $70 billion by 2015.
Expect to see the usage of 3D in more and more applications as new 3D toolkits, services, and platforms are developed. Today a diverse array of items can be built with 3D printing tools—car parts, batteries, prosthetics, computer chips, jewelry, clothing, and firearms. Amazingly, 3D printing has even been used to print organs from a patient’s own cells. Advances in 3D printing and laser cutting have increased the quality, speed, and ease of physical prototyping while bringing down costs.