While continued advancements in sensing, imaging and mapping — as well as AI and computing — are helping to evolve the technology, the reality is that the complexity and cost requirements are presenting challenges. “AI technologies will be the most disruptive class of technologies over the next 10 years due to radical computational power, near-endless amounts of data and unprecedented advances in deep neural networks,” Walker says. “These will enable organizations with AI technologies to harness data in order to adapt to new situations and solve problems that no one has ever encountered previously.”
Also in the realm of AI, machine learning, one of the hottest concepts in technology, has the potential to benefit industries from supply chain to drug research. It will soon become impossible for conventional engineering solutions to handle the increasing amounts of available data. Machine learning offers the ability to extract certain knowledge and patterns from a series of observations.
Transparently Immersive Experiences
At Facebook’s F8 Conference this year, the company introduced the Camera Effects Platform, launching a connection between augmented reality (AR) and social media. It ignited conversations about the potential for AR in the consumer world. However, the technology, which integrates virtual enhancements with real-world objects, could have big potential for industry.
For example, instead of a relying on printed paper or separate screens, AR could overlay a maintenance schematic on a broken lamp post. Enterprises should create an AR strategy in the business with specific goals and tasks for trials and benchmarks. When it comes to transparently immersive experiences, technology is introducing transparency between people, businesses and things.
As technology evolves to be more adaptive, contextual and fluid, it will become more human-centric. Besides AR, companies should look to digital workspaces, connected homes, virtual reality and 4D printing in this realm.
With bitcoin and Ethereum constantly in the news, blockchain might seem like it’s just around the corner. However, most initiatives are still in alpha or beta stage. Enterprises are still deciding how to navigate this technology, but the lack of proven use cases and the volatility of bitcoin have created concerns about the viability of the technology.
Long-term, Gartner believes this technology will lead to a reformation of whole industries. Of the two types of blockchain — permissionless-public ledgers and permissioned-public ledgers — enterprises should look toward the latter option. Permissioned-public ledgers have access controls owned/managed by rules, but still allow for a community. For commercial transactions, companies might look to permissionless-public ledgers such as bitcoin, which allows unknown or untrusted users to access the ledger.
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As digital business moves away from siloed business ventures and toward interconnected ecosystems, technology is evolving from compartmentalized technical infrastructure to ecosystem enabling platforms. Businesses must think about how to create platform-based business models and what technology is needed to support that move. Other technologies in this area include 5G, digital twins, IoT platforms and quantum computing.