The future is now
As we enter a new decade, it is fascinating to reflect on the vast array of technological change we have seen in the last ten years. We’ve seen the introduction of the smartphone, the rapid growth of streaming services, the introduction of electric scooters and the word ‘Uber’ has become part of the mainstream vocabulary. None of these would have been possible without the rapid advances in technology we have witnessed over the last decade.
Back in 2010, the world saw the first 3D television, shortly followed by the release of Fujifilm’s first compact 3D camera and The Sun’s 3D newspaper. These seemed to be amazing feats – however, with products such as virtual reality games and lenses now entering the market, these earlier technologies seem prehistoric. The last decade has also seen the unprecedented rise of social media. In 2010, Instagram and Pinterest had only just been created, with Facebook just gaining traction in the market. These days, there are social media apps for everything; from dating apps like Tinder to entertainment services like TikTok, there is now a way to connect with anyone at any time. All these changes have not only created an array of new entrepreneurs, businesses and industries, but also impacted the way those in traditional industries do business. So, what will the world look like in the next 10 years? A future merging of augmented and virtual reality could allow users to experience life on Mars, help resolve phobias or fears and even revolutionise the hiring process. As cyber threats become more prevalent, security will have increasing importance. Even the act of typing may become redundant, due to advances in audio recognition. Climate change concerns mean sustainability has also come to the forefront. Once viewed by companies as nothing more than a legal nuisance, sustainability must now be an integral part of companies’ strategies. Thanks to emerging technologies, such as reusable energy and developments in materials, it is hoped that engaging in sustainable practices is likely to become the norm, and more cost-effective over time. From a business perspective, it is essential that organisations continue to move with the current of change, rather than fighting the flow. Whilst the thought of things like artificial intelligence taking over the workforce may be frightening, refusing to stay abreast of new technology may result in competitive disadvantage. If the last ten years has taught us anything, it is to expect the unexpected - a strategy that is successful now, may no longer be relevant in ten years’ time. Hence, analysing future trends and harnessing their potential is a great way to stay ahead of the game, as they are more than just fads – they are the future.