Gartner Research

Hype Cycle for Digital Grid Transformation Technologies, 2020

Published: 12 August 2020


Sustainability challenges and grid edge disruption are driving structural changes in energy systems, requiring a digital grid that will support new business models. This Hype Cycle provides utility CIOs insights into critical technologies for digital grid transformation during the energy transition.

Included in Full Research

  • What You Need to Know
  • The Hype Cycle
  • The Priority Matrix
  • Off the Hype Cycle
  • On the Rise
    • Artificial General Intelligence
    • Smart Dust
    • Transactive Energy
  • At the Peak
    • Energy-Sharing Platforms
    • Wireless Electric Vehicle Charging
    • Edge Computing
    • Vehicle-to-Grid
    • Blockchain in Utilities
    • Edge AI
    • Distributed Energy Resource Management System
    • Digital Business Technology Platform
    • Energy Efficiency Gamification
  • Sliding Into the Trough
    • Digital Twin
    • Big Data
    • IoT in Utilities
    • Meter Data Analytics
    • Combined Heat and Power
    • Consumer Energy Storage
    • Consumer Smart Appliances
    • Home Energy Management
    • Microgrids
    • Advanced Distribution Management Systems
    • Customer Gateways
    • Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure
    • Distributed Generation
    • Broadband Over Power Line
    • Industrial Operational Intelligence
    • Electric Vehicles
  • Climbing the Slope
    • IT/OT Integration
    • Advanced Metering Infrastructure
    • Phasor Measurement Units
    • Demand-Response Management Systems
    • CIM Integration Standards
    • API Economy
    • Substation Intelligent Electronic Devices
    • Advanced Distribution Protection and Restoration Devices
    • Energy Storage (Grid Scale)
    • Meter Data Management
  • Entering the Plateau
    • RF Networks for Utility Field Applications
  • Appendixes
    • Hype Cycle Phases, Benefit Ratings and Maturity Levels


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The Hype Cycle: Understanding the pitfalls and opportunities of innovations

How does a Gartner Hype Cycle™ work?

A Gartner Hype Cycle provides an objective map that helps you understand the real risks and opportunities of innovation, so you can avoid adopting something too early, giving up too soon, adopting too late, or hanging on too long. Every Hype Cycle includes five phases:

The innovation trigger starts when an event, like a technological breakthrough or a product launch, gets people talking.

The peak of inflated expectations is when product usage increases, but there’s still more hype than proof that the innovation can deliver what you need.

The trough of disillusionment happens when the original excitement wears off and early adopters report performance issues and low ROI.

The slope of enlightenment occurs when early adopters see initial benefits and others start to understand how to adapt the innovation to their organizations.

The plateau of productivity marks the point at which more users see real-world benefits and the innovation goes mainstream.

The Hype Cycle is more than just a diagram. You also get:

Evidence-backed insight

Hype Cycles tap into deep research, surveys and conversations with technology suppliers and Gartner clients.

An analysis of objective and value

The y-axis measures expectations. The x-axis relates them to the proven value of that innovation over time.

A long-term view

It often takes between three and five years for an innovation to move through the Hype Cycle, but some fall off along the way.

Gartner Hype Cycle is just one of our many offerings.

We provide actionable, objective insight to help organizations make smarter, faster technology decisions to stay ahead of disruption and accelerate growth.

Pick the right provider with confidence

We work with you to select the best-fit provider to avoid the costly repercussions of a poor decision.

Align deal structures and optimize spend

We benchmark pricing against the market so you avoid unnecessary charges.

Reduce complexity and risk

We analyze contract terms and conditions to protect you against future price increases and unanticipated costs.

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