Gartner has looked ahead to the upcoming digital future, revealing its top predictions for 2017 and beyond.
Gartner states that its predictions “examine three fundamental effects of continued digital innovation”, comprising experience and engagement, business innovation and secondary effects resulting from increased digital capabilities.
“At the core of future outcomes is the notion of digital disruption, which has moved from an infrequent inconvenience to a consistent stream of change that is redefining markets and entire industries,” Daryl Plummer, Gartner managing vice president, chief of research and fellow, commented.
“Last year we said digital changes were coming fast. This year the acceleration continues and may cause secondary effects that have wide-ranging impact on people and technology.”
By 2020, 100 million consumers will shop in augmented reality: AR applications such as Pokémon GO will help bring AR into the mainstream, prompting more retailers to incorporate it into the shopping experience, digital signage and audio visual solutions. As mobile device usage becomes an ingrained behaviour, brands and their retail partners will need to develop mechanisms to leverage this to enhance the shopping experience, with AR applications layering digital information representing one such route to deeper engagement.
By 2020, 30 per cent of web browsing sessions will be done without a screen: technologies, such as Google Home and Amazon Echo, are making access to dialogue-based information ubiquitous, spawning new platforms. Vocal interactions extend the utility of web sessions to contexts such as driving, cooking, walking, socialising, exercising and operating machinery. The share of waking hours without instant access to online resources will approach zero.
By 2019, 20 per cent of brands will abandon their mobile apps: with many brands finding that the level of adoption, customer engagement and return on investment delivered by their apps is significantly less than expectations, new approaches are emerging with a lower barrier to discovery and installation, offering levels of engagement approaching those of applications at a fraction of the investment, support and marketing cost.
By 2020, algorithms will positively alter the behaviour of more than 1 billion global workers:algorithms can positively alter human behaviour, augmenting human intelligence with the large collective memory bank containing knowledge that has been socialised and put to the test, with this to help workers “remember” anything or be informed of just-in-time knowledge they have never even experienced, leaving them to objectively complete the task at hand, while also better appreciating life as it unveils.
By 2022, a blockchain-based business will be worth US$10 billion: with blockchain applications freeing up cash, reducing transaction costs and accelerating business processes, blockchain development, while still immature, it is attracting product and capital investment.
By 2021, 20 per cent of all activities an individual engages in will involve at least one of the top-seven digital giants: as the physical, financial and healthcare world becomes more digital, many activities an individual engages in will be connected, with the current top-seven digital giants by revenue and market capitalisation being: Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent.
Through 2019, every US$1 enterprises invest in innovation will require an additional US$7 in core execution: designing, implementing, integrating, operationalising and managing the ideated solution can be significantly more than the initial innovation costs, with Gartner anticipating that for every US$1 spent on the digital innovation/ideation phase, enterprises will spend on average US$7 for deploying the solution.
Through 2020, IoT will increase data centre storage demand by less than 3 per cent: of the roughly 900 exabytes of data centre hard-disk drive and solid-state drive capacity forecast to ship in 2020, IoT discrete sensor storage will represent only 0.4 per cent, with storage from multimedia sensors consuming another 2 per cent, indicating IoT can scale and deliver important data-driven business value and insight while remaining manageable from a storage infrastructure standpoint.
By 2022, IoT will save consumers and businesses US$1 trillion a year in maintenance, services and consumables: with IoT holding enormous promise in reducing the cost of maintenance and consumables, the challenge lies in providing a secure, robust implementation delivering savings over one or two decades without driving management costs that absorb any savings made.
By 2020, 40 per cent of employees can cut their healthcare costs by wearing a fitness tracker:companies will increasingly appoint fitness program managers, working closely with human resource leaders, including fitness trackers in wellness programs as part of a broader employee engagement initiative. Healthcare providers can act on the data from wearable fitness trackers, while data can be analysed either in real-time or in retrospect, with the potential for doctors and other healthcare professionals to have access to information if the patient agrees to share it.