Just as Moore’s law predicted, technology is continuing to accelerate beyond it’s already rapid pace, and nowhere is experiencing these changes as much as the business world. In the last 30 years we’ve gone from typewriters and faxes to laptops and broadband, with constant improvements being made all the time.
Even if technology advances begin to slow down, however unlikely that may seem, there are still plenty of incredible and exciting prospects on the immediate horizon. Read on to find out what the business of the future might look like and why that future may be closer than we realise.
AI is probably one of the biggest talking points in business right now, and everyone is looking to capitalise on the growth of machines that are capable of learning. These machines will ideally be fed huge amounts of data to train themselves and will then be able to make running the day to day of business operations that much easier. From automatically rescheduling appointments, to simple email replies.
An Axelos survey found that 59% of IT professionals believe that automation will replace routine tasks and as many as 60% of believe that machine learning and AI will have an impact on project management.
Surely this is a long way off though? Actually, the fully realised version of AI is closer than we might think. New developments coming from Google’s Deep Mind and IBM’s Watson are coming thick and fast, so much so that many believe that AI will become a common part of everyday life by as early as 2025.
IoT and Smart Technology
The Internet of Things and smart technology are inexorably linked, as smart devices connect to each other and centralised processes they can then process all of this data and create a much larger and more comprehensive understanding of how systems, buildings, and even cities, can be managed more effectively.
One of the more obvious examples is something as simple as heating. if your devices understand when they are used most by monitoring their consumption then this data can be processed to inform your heating system as to when is the best time to raise and lower the temperature. Using simple power consumption measurements will allow the system to achieve an optimum working temperature and eliminate any unnecessary wastage.
There is a belief that everything will be inevitably connected, full realising the potential of smart cities. This will allow vast amounts of data to be processed and make numerous quality of life improvements across an entire infrastructure. These benefits could range from anything including more efficient public transport management, to bins that know when they’re full to reduce unnecessary rubbish services.
Autonomous Vehicles, or self-driving cars, are seldom out of the news in this day and age. Pioneers at Google’s Waymo and Tesla are no longer the only people in the game either, as many of the larger auto manufacturers are getting involved too. Ford, and Volkswagen have both made significant investments into the technology, with the latter even teaming up with a Silicon Valley start-up.
The belief is that these vehicles will be safer and more efficient, negating potential risks and increasing the profit margins of those who use them. Delivery companies like Amazon are naturally very keen to invest in this space and UPS have even experimented with using driverless cars and piloted drones to complete deliveries.
How far away these technologies are depends on who you ask, as companies like Waymo believe that it’s a matter of years whereas industry analysts speculate that it may be decades.
Either way, this is an exciting time for businesses as new technologies are applied to legacy problems each and every day.