2016 saw the rise of contactless payment, live-streaming and huge advancements made in robotics. What technology trends will 2017 bring?
Here are our predictions:
We expect 2017 to be the year that self-driving vehicles really take off. The big tech companies have already been experimenting with driverless technology and car manufacturers are scrambling to get self-driving software into their vehicles as quickly as possible. Last year, cities like Singapore and San Francisco began conducting driverless taxi trials – could Australia be next?
Protecting our privacy has never been more important after the huge, high profile data breaches that came to light in 2016. As a result we predict 2017 will see a significant rise in biometric security aka fingerprint technology. Most of the newer smartphones on the market already have fingerprint readers that allow the user to unlock their device with a fingerprint and some of the big-name computer manufacturers have also introduced facial recognition technology on their latest models. All these signs point towards broad consumerisation of biometric security and by 2018, we predict that it’ll be considered strange not to use a body part to unlock your device.
Last year, Amazon completed its first delivery via drone to a farm in the UK and 7 Eleven managed the same feat in the US. Whether drone delivery is a possibility in urban areas, where there are plenty of air hazards, remains to be seen but delivery companies should certainly keep an eye on this technology. In Australia for example, drones could be a vital help in delivering goods to the country’s most remote areas.
Virtual Reality (VR) & Augmented Reality (AR)
This year we predict that VR will dominate tech trends as entertainment providers offer front-row seats at big sporting and music events through the use of VR headsets. Already, we’ve seen the Kentucky Derby in the US live-streamed in virtual reality so expect more of the same in 2017.
Similarly you can expect AR to go much more mainstream this year. In 2016, the AR gaming app Pokémon Go! exploded onto our screens but this year, apps will focus on using augmented reality for practical purposes to make daily life easier; like SnapShop, a showroom app that lets you see what potential furniture looks like in your home before you buy it.
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
The AI revolution is well and truly upon us and soon it’ll impact virtually everything we do because it will power a variety of software and services we use. As Google has proved with its DeepMind artificial intelligence program, we no longer need to teach machines to perform tasks, they can now learn how to do it themselves.