As Organizations are still battling to cope with the pace of changes that happened in 2017, it’s time to gear up for what 2018 has in store for all of us. Everyone had Artificial Intelligence and IoT on the tip of their tongues throughout 2017, while block-chain made its way towards the spotlight, its peer Bitcoin ate up all the attention. The year 2017 can be called as a learning curve for various companies. As many organizations were struggling and figuring out how to make the most of the new technologies flooding in, the likes of IBM, SAP, CISCO etc. were gearing to stay ahead in the race to exploit these opportunities in the business landscape.
Here are the 10 Digital Transformations trends, which were backstage in 2017 but are undoubtedly going to be hard to miss in 2018. In this two-part blog post, we will open the doors to the most important digital transformation trends that will most likely make waves in 2018.
Internet of Things
The last year was functional in shaping up the future of IoT in business and not limiting its use to creating just a network of things. With extensive data aggressive organizations working with IoT, we see 2018 a revolutionary year for IoT enabled businesses. Not only do we see IoT revolutionizing data collection and curation, but we can also expect it pushing different trends like analytics, Edge computing and 5G processing in the market.
There are currently about 8.4 billion connected devices in the world – somewhat short of the 26 billion that Gartner predicted in 2013 would be in use by the end of the decade. And there is only going to be an upward movement from here in terms of growth of smart devices. Apart from collection of data from this tremendous number of devices, the primary need is going to be in cutting through the clutter and finding those key business insights as businesses are going to need them in real time. This will forge the need for exponential speed and emergence of edge computing as the need of the hour. It will also push Mobile operators to direct their efforts towards faster implementation of 5G-cell processing.
In 2018, analytics is working closely with the digital innovation as the IoT, sensor, machine learning and AI, block chain and business data networks integrate to create whole new hoard of chances in the business world. This year looks as the changing point for the future of cloud analytics looking at the amount of cloud data that is being created. This is in turn pointing the need for organization to look at analytics from a hybrid perspective i.e. across various cloud platforms.
As natural language ushers in and provides users the flexibility to ask for specific answers from the data, obtaining insights from the information collected and processing it to understand business problems and formulating solutions is going to be relatively faster which in turn will open new avenues in augmenting the current state of use of analytics in sales, customer service and research. As machines learning, AI and big data walk hand in hand, insight trading will create new business ventures in curating data. This will turn make it easy for big organizations to gain access to rich insights from data that they do not own. Booming use of machine learning algorithms will change the face of sorting through large volumes of data to obtain relevant and contextual problem statements. In the era of customer being the king understanding your consumer precise needs will become much easier as analytics will take charge of obtaining the cream of customer intelligence.
For everyone working with intensive IoT technology and cloud computing, edge computing arrived as a blessing. With all the bandwidth, time and storage expense incurred to send data to centre storage data centers and conduct analysis, cloud seems to be taking a back seat in 2018 with edge computing emerging as the hero. Simple concept of installing micro data centers near the data sources enables the organization to conduct near real time data analysis, which is beneficial as, much of the data created nowadays is time bound. Gartner predicts by 2022, 75% of enterprise-generated data will be created and processed outside the data center or cloud, up from just 10% today.
For completely exploiting the benefits of edge computing we need to have substantial and sustainable IoT infrastructure ready as device connectivity is at its core. Taking science and technological advancements which have zero to none interference by humans for e.g. Self-driving cars are highly dependent on real time decision making and cannot depend on the latency caused due the large distance between the device and the cloud.
Edge computing not only saves costs by limiting the time taken to collect and analyze data but it also helps your organization stay connected with your data sources at all times and acts as a positive differentiator for your organization.
Once a complicated tech known only with respect to Bitcoin in the context, blockchain now as an individual technology is getting noticed by people. Blockchain is entering the mainstream world and gaining recognition as one of the most secure transactional technology we have in the world. As various crypto currencies can be seen making their way in the business landscape awareness about blockchain and its implementation in various other sectors apart from financial give and takes is coming into prominence.
The healthcare sector is next major user of blockchain, it uses blockchain to eliminate counterfeit pharmaceutical drugs. Nonetheless we can a large number of companies accepting crypto currencies and wallets as mode of payment for e.g., WordPress.
The basis of blockchain is disruption and thus it has the power to disrupt many deep-rooted industries especially the ones with lot of middlemen and intermediaries. Small players and startups engaging in creating business opportunities by the use of block chain is coming up as a trend this year with players like Excel Coin, Acorn Collective, Hybrid Block, ODEM etc. working to change the way a service can be delivered.
Undoubtedly the most awaited trend of 2017, “Artificial Intelligence” became quite the buzzword by the end of 2017. We saw machine learning and AI being introduced as the one stop solution for all business problems but as we enter 2018 we are observing that even though AI holds tremendous opportunities it also comes with some set of limitations. Companies are trying to cut through the hype and are looking for specific and clear business applications for AI. And so we can say that 2018 is turning out the year where organizations want more than proof of concept.
Expert systems were crucial in lowering monotonous workloads especially in the financial world. Understanding the fact that integration of machine learning with the current use of expert systems will lead to more efficient usage can help organizations not only cut down on turn over time but cut costs and increase accuracy.
As AI techniques like deep learning come into the picture helping gain access to critical data insights, we can expect businesses not only wanting to know information but also understand the reasoning process putting emphasis on the back end. This will give impetus to improved Natural Language Generation systems.
Stay with us as we explore what more the digital world has in store for you as this year unfolds. Next article dives into predicting how 5G, Augmented reality, low code platforms, Apps and APIs and CX(Customer Experience) will emerge this year.