Dave Antrobus Discusses the 6 Biggest Tech Trends To Come in 2021
It would be an understatement to say that 2020 was unpredictable. But one thing’s for certain: companies ramped up their technologies to cope with the coronavirus crisis and stay afloat during a challenging time. In fact, many businesses, according to Dave Antrobus, integrated technologies so heavily that they redefined pretty much everything about the ways their teams work, from their office spaces to the software they use, and even their product portfolios. These changes aren’t going to slow down either – technology is the driving force that dictates how we interact with our colleagues, clients, customers, and supply chains, and COVID-19 is the catalyst that will accelerate our digital lives yet further.
Here, Dave Antrobus, Technology Director at Fresh Thinking Group (FTG), explores six technology trends that he expects will take precedence during 2021.
1) The As-a-Service Revolution
The As-a-Service Revolution refers to the uptick in companies using on-demand, cloud-based platforms to operate their systems and back up their data. Cloud-based platforms are amongst the most widely used technologies of our time, and we’re likely to see yet more companies making use of the cloud in 2021. After all, the pandemic has proven that companies around the world can rely on the cloud to provide scalable solutions and uphold communications. So, as we move into the new year, Dave Antrobus believes these companies are likely to continue using online communication and project management tools like Zoom, Trello, and Slack to uphold efficiency and meet ongoing demand.
2) 5G and Enhanced Connectivity
Mobile connectivity has advanced rapidly over the years, unlocking new internet uses with each generation. For example, 3G has enabled web browsing and data services on mobile devices, and 4G has enabled video and audio streaming on increased bandwidths. Now that 5G is becoming more readily available, we are likely to see a stream of new technologies that capitalise on 5G networks throughout 2021. For example, 5G will enable services that rely on augmented and virtual realities, not to mention advanced cloud-based gaming platforms such as NVDIA’s GeForce Now and Google’s Stadia. As network providers roll out 5G, enhanced connectivity will also likely wipe out cable and fibre networks that tether users to specific locations.
3) Artificial Intelligence (AI)
The rise of AI is well underway and will likely grow exponentially throughout 2021, especially in the development of applications that help us to understand and interpret the world around us. For example, while we collate data to measure COVID-19 infection rates and vaccine efficacy, AI will inform our success measures as we aim to curb cases and keep the virus under control.
AI systems supporting the pandemic span from computer vision systems that monitor the capacity of public spaces to track-and-trace initiatives that monitor contact tracing. These systems use self-learning algorithms that become increasingly intelligent and offer far more data than it would be possible to collect through human analysis. With AI systems in place, we will be able to effectively predict demand for healthcare services and help administrators to make informed decisions about where and when to deploy resources.
Coronavirus aside, AI will also help businesses to evaluate and understand customers’ evolving behaviours. As AI systems become increasingly accessible and affordable, we will see the analysis of behavioural shifts become both more sophisticated and commonplace.
4) Vehicle Automation
COVID-19 has disrupted the average commuter’s travels, and the number of passengers using public transport has now reduced due to the rise of remote working. But, as some employees must still attend the workplace for certain events, the number of commuters is fluctuating weekly. We’re likely to see this uncertainty continue well in 2021 and even beyond. As a result, public-transport networks may well need to adopt vehicle automation systems to keep travel running smoothly while reducing labour costs in correlation with the decline in ticket sales.
5) Robotics and Drones
Over the last few years, we have seen an emergence of robots in care and assisted-living sectors, which are increasingly vital in a world stricken with infection. While human caregivers play an important role in these sectors, robotic devices can be of great aid when supporting patients in hospitals and hospices – and even at home. From opening new channels of communication – including 24/7 in-home help – to cleaning robots, security devices, and drones that deliver medicines, the newest robotic innovations are key to managing huge demand in healthcare.
6) Extended Reality (XR) – Virtual and Augmented Reality (VR/AR)
Extended reality encompasses virtual and augmented realities – technologies that use glasses or headsets to project computer-generated images into a user’s field of vision. While AR technologies superimpose images over the real world, VR technologies create original computer-generated environments.
In future, VR and AR applications will be particularly key to developments in medical sectors. For example, we will hopefully be able to reduce COVID-19 transmission in medical settings as practitioners will likely soon be able to examine patients and diagnose illnesses remotely. As more data on viral transmission becomes available, we will also be able to use AR tools to provide real-time warnings when we approach high-risk areas and when we need to wash hands upon touching communal facilities. We may even have access to devices that alert us when we touch our faces without having washed our hands. Such accelerations in technology could drastically reduce the spread of infection and save lives.
AR and VR will have a huge impact on other sectors, too. One example is the eye-care sector – opticians will soon be able to carry out remote eye tests using VR, and customers will then be able to virtually try on a range of glasses using AR. Meanwhile, in the education sector, AR and VR tools will reduce the need for children to work in crowded classrooms, especially in areas with high transmission rates. The options are limitless.
As technological advancements accelerate over the next 12 months, our adoption of these technologies must accelerate, too. When we can use technologies to automate our business processes, we can become more efficient and streamline our productivity.
For more business insights from Dave Antrobus, take a look at his recent news.
About Dave Antrobus
Dave Antrobus is the co-founder of Fresh Thinking Group, Manchester’s independent capital investment organisation. He onboards an array of companies who benefit from FTG’s top-level business functions, shared resources, and bespoke growth strategies, providing each acquisition with tailored business guidance and technical know-how. As FTG’s Technology Director, Dave builds and optimises a wealth of software solutions – primarily websites and mobile apps – for acquisitions in both digital and logistics sectors. He writes the code for these systems using Laravel, Vuejs, and Reactjs, and also manages an extensive collection of WordPress sites and server technologies.
Learn more about Fresh Thinking Group at https://freshthinking.group.