Upcoming Technology: 10 Trends to Watch In The Next Five Years

3 January, 2017 / Articles

Authors across the internet predict emerging trends that will take off in 10 years — but what about within the next five? The year 2022 will arrive before we know it, so what should we expect to see by then (or before)?

Ten members of Forbes Technology Council offer their own thoughts, gleaned from many years in IT. Here’s what they’re keeping an eye on in the next few years, and why.

1. Chat Bots And Conversational Interfaces

I think there will be more conversations with computers and technology that emerges to automate even more of our daily processes at work and in life. This is starting to be used now but is still not widely adopted. It will take more artificial intelligence to push this trend forward. – Chalmers Brown, Due

2. Virtual Reality

Technology usually takes off when businesses figure out how to make real money with it. I predict this will soon happen with VR, as it’s already starting to be used in business communications, retail, entertainment, sports, health and other industries. It has the potential to completely change how we work, shop, play and consume media. And it’s going to get here sooner than most people think. – Alexander Kharlamov, Mark43

3. Driverless Cars

Autonomous driving cars along with electric vehicles will have a huge impact on the car industry that we know today. Autonomous vehicles will eliminate the need for car ownership for the masses, and electric vehicles will change the game on fossil fuel consumption. – Arash Asli, Yocale

4. Automation

The adoption of automation and how it impacts our life is still in its infancy. However, it’s not just for assembly lines anymore, because technology is starting to be able to adapt to dynamic circumstances. There are going to be more self-driving vehicles and automation is going to work its way up the food chain from repetitive tasks to more complex, decision-making routines. – Timothy Chaves, ZipBooks

5. Internet Of Things

Hands down the most exciting technology trend is the Internet of Things (IoT). For me, the real-world consumer application of IoT is Amazon’s Alexa. She just keeps getting more and more useful as I integrate her into everything I can to automate my home and office. Within five years I believe I’ll be able to control just about anything, from my TV to my pool heater with voice technology and IoT devices. – Scott Stiner, UM Technologies, LLC

6. Machine Learning

What every startup wants to be is different each decade. In the 1980’s it was a software company. In the 1990’s it was an internet company. In the 2000’s it was a social network. In the 2010’s it’s now a machine learning company. Even established businesses, eBay for instance, are reinventing themselves and want in on the machine learning “cognitive revolution.” – Paulo Marques, Feedzai

7. Serverless Architectures

The rise of “function-as-a-service” platforms such as AWS Lambda or Azure Functions will bring the cost of DevOps to its bare minimum in the following years. Building your apps within such a framework helps to develop, deliver and scale services seamlessly for a fraction of the cost. The platforms are not there yet for massive adoption, but the trend is growing every day. – Andrey Neverov, Trucker Path

8. Deep Learning

Deep learning and machine learning have a huge role to play. With data volumes already overwhelming businesses and yet constantly increasing, we’re going to see more organizations looking to algorithms to do the heavy lifting and unearth actionable insights. The manual approach of having armies of analysts identifying intent, reading and classifying data by hand is neither scalable nor cost-effective. – Tim Barker, DataSift

9. Cyber Attacks On IoT Devices

Instances of ransomware are already growing at an incredibly rapid rate. As we transition to the daily use of more smart devices, such as smart cars and smart watches, we anticipate that these platforms will be targeted. It’s important that we understand this now so that we can get out ahead of it to protect businesses and consumers. – Marcin Kleczynski, Malwarebytes

10. Voice Control

The Internet of Things and voice control will develop in tandem. Voice is innately suited to interfacing with devices that are embedded into our environment. Advances in machine learning and natural language processing have already made conversational agents possible. As they grow in sophistication, they will move from the periphery and become a primary interface for IoT devices and networks.

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