With markets moving at increasingly rapid rates and generations of individuals tied to their smart gadgets, we thought we'd investigate the likely trends in tech coming soon to an online or AI store. Some trends may be further afield as we're scoping investment trends as big money invests where the markets dominate.
Here's a snapshot of what we're seeing.....
Car ownership models are shifting with many manufacturers testing "subscription based" models - select test cities in the USA offer subscribers a choice of models for as long as they want them, giving them the ability to switch out when they choose. Some manufacturers are packaging in insurance, roadside assistance, detailing services and personal concierge to clean and deliver each car. Subscription services for short term rentals/hire are also growing in densely populated cities where car ownership figures are dropping, yet the occasional need for a car remains. These services allow subscribers who don't own a car to book one for short term loan - great for a weekend away or trip where public transport won't cut it.
Live Video and group chat is emerging as a growing trend to watch in 2018. Gaming comes into its own with emerging trends in live streaming and interactivity taking on a whole new meaning. Video game developers are trialing live stream simultaneous games with players on smart phones. Current trials are on the IOS (apple) platform with Android coming online later this year. Meantime Facebook has released Bonfire which allows you to have video chats with big groups of your friends simultaneously.
Fitness trends are moving to live streaming with on-demand personal trainers delivered straight through your smart phone. Subscription model services allow you to access live streamed classes without the need to get to a gym. Fitness pods are also popping up which allow individuals to use facilities while travelling. Individual sized pods have fitness equipment in a 3 metre cube, with streamed personal trainers, all synced to your smart phone. Hotel chains are partnering with fitness providers to rent fitness clothing and equipment to travellers, no need to pack workout gear and bulky sneakers when travelling.
Cybersecurity is becoming an imperative and moving much more to an individual level. Forget trusting large corporations to protect your data, security starts with the individual. Watch for new smartphone security apps which allows users to scan apps before installing or opening. New browsers are also in development which protect users privacy online. Corporations now realise the "single employee" could be their weakest link, and are actively bolstering their hack-awareness. Facebook holdsa Hacktober event each October putting its employees through a variety of attached from phishing to spam - winners are rewarded with prizes. Cyberinsurance is also now focusing on protection against individuals.
Smart Pills are making health diagnostics easier with the first FDA approved smart pill released in November 2017. The pills are enhanced with sensors tracking whether a drug regiment is being adhered to. Other smart pills have embedded cameras which provides a less invasive exploratory procedure for diagnosing health issues. Their rising popularity is due to them offering a less invasive procedure, they're easily scalable and don't require constant monitoring from health care providers during the procedure.
Pampered pets are now going tech with Samsung releasing its Dream Doghouse equipped with an automated dog feeder, Samsung tablet, a treadmill lined with fake grass and a hydrotherapy pool. Another called ZenCrate plays music at specific times to calm dogs, operates motion activated fans and is wifi enabled to collect and transit data. A third supplier's offering has an automatic flush toilet, auto feeding, regulated temperature, tablet with camera and speaker so you can speak with your pet, and games to keep Fido entertained while you're away. Pet health trackers are also on the rise in popularity to help monitor daily routines and exercise. What about DNA sampling for your dog? Embark offers genome analysis for Fido which collects a dog's cheek swab and analyzed its pedigree, geographical ancestry and soon - genetic disease information all for $199.
Self serve and vending is the retail of the future, but not necessarily in traditional retail outlets. How about shopping in your Uber? An unmanned storefront in your apartment lobby tracking what you take and automatically charging you for it? These are all concepts big providers like Amazon and Walmart are patenting now.
3D printing is fast becoming part of the manufacturing process, enabling custom ordering of products to fast-track production lines. Large scale 3D printers are improving the quality and capacity of production giving customers bespoke products with short lead times.
Tech is also moving fast into aged care, with artificial intelligence companies building companion robots and pets to provide ageing loved ones with home help or companionship which improved mental and physical health outcomes.
Affordable Housing is also changing with some large tech firms now providing this as part of the employment package. Big firms like Google and Facebook are building corporate living campuses which provide low cost housing for their employees. This helps them attract high calibre entry level staffers who could not afford to rent close to their workplaces.
Tech is fast changing our world!