2021 will be a year in which the technologies we talked about a few years ago will start to become prevalent. Some of them are a little bit. controversial and others have the potential to revolutionize the way we use computers.
1. IoT and 5G technology
The Internet of Things (IoT) has been around for some time, but it was only in the last few years that we began to see the widespread use of technology in business. So far, we have seen their applications in retail, such as self-driving cars and wireless lamps, but that is not all it is capable of.
IoT has the potential to transform everything from the way we manufacture products to the cost of repairing wind turbines. 5G technology, despite its somewhat dubious reputation, will not only increase the viability of how we use IoT devices. 5G brings several features that make it ideal for IoT.
The ability to deploy closed 5G personal networks makes it possible to run IoT-enhanced projects in remote areas (think of agriculture in very rural distanced areas). The technology can also be compatible with the use of batteries, which means that IoT sensors can last up to 10 years before needing a battery change.
With every major technology change, there is a greater need for better cybersecurity. At the beginning of the pandemic last year, there was an immediate boom in cyber-crime, partly driven by the shift to remote work, and the adoption of new technologies that people have started to use.
In 2021 it will be not so different in terms of the need to advance cybersecurity strategies to the constantly evolving risks. The challenges that cybersecurity professionals will face this year include the need to better protect employees who are working remotely and the technology they use. This includes the adoption of more advanced VPNs to improve security when connecting to remote services. Moreover, there will also be a need for greater adoption of mobile device management, as more employees work remotely using their own devices and home networks.
Besides, the continued increase in IoT devices means the need to improve its security measures, especially around mobile devices, which have been the target of attacks. With technologies like self-driving cars becoming more common and more IoT devices arriving at the workplace, it will be critical to prevent these devices from becoming attack vectors for ransomware and botnet attacks.
The move to “work from home politics” means that much more business will be performed in the cloud through platforms such as Microsoft 365, Google Suites, OnEIT Cloud Storage, and Asana, which means that your cloud will need some protection. Recently we have seen massive attacks on Microsoft's cloud services, and although the main targets of the attack were governments, the risks of businesses and personal users’ are growing increasingly.
The increase in data protection laws, such as the GDPR, requires companies to review their processes related to the management of data they acquire and how they store it. These new regulations or laws come with heavy fines that make it prohibitive for business managers to neglect these issues.
3. The "remote work" boom and the rise of the digital workplace
2020 may have been a sudden introduction to remote work for many companies, but 2021 will be the year when we will fully embrace this technology.
Before the pandemic, there was a great hesitation around remote work, as some conservative managers had a great fear that employees would not work this way. These managers believed that many of their employees would spend all day doing nothing, but would still receive their salary at the end of the month. During the pandemic, this type of thinking proved to be absurd. The employees were not less productive, and in many cases, it was possible to see that the employees can be even more productive than in the conventional face-to-face work model.
This means that there is room for collaborative platforms, such as Eloops and Bluescape, which can make working remotely even more effective. There is also, as we mentioned, a growing need to develop better security solutions around working solutions.
Along with these collaborative platforms, comes data analysis, that can help companies discover things like which teams work together most efficiently and where they can improve. This data can help companies increase productivity and create highly efficient teams that work together extremely well.
In line with all this, in many cases, the company can identify that with remote work comes the possibility of cost reduction or better use of the companies' physical spaces and infrastructure.
In case you want to join the digital transformation, you can always count on an IT company like ESKA, which will assist you in it.
4. Specialized technology in e-Learning
This technology wasn't everyone's favorite thing in 2020, but remote learning was just as important a part of last year as remote work. In 2021, we will see this technology evolve to improve everyone's experience.
Platforms like Udacity and Coursera are already well established, but in 2021 we will see companies coming up with platforms that make it easier for elementary and high school levels to manage their online classrooms.
We will also begin to see an impetus for training and learning tools that prioritize mobile learning. The platforms, designed in 2021 allow people to train and learn more efficiently on the go and using their mobile devices wherever they want, instead of having a place, dedicated to learning. Adding mobility to education will increase the inclusion of students and reduce social inequalities.
5. Machine learning and artificial intelligence
Machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI) are technologies increasingly being used worldwide. From driving autonomous vehicles to helping adjust our playlist recommendations – the possibilities for these technologies are seemingly endless.
Companies are using ML and AI to help with:
- Better analysis of customers' behavior who previously canceled services and making offers in a proactive way that can convince them to stay or become interested in services and products again.
- Building recommendation engines (similar to what Amazon uses) to help make personalized offers to customers based on their previous purchases or survey items. This can be combined with sales and other tools, such as geographic segmentation, to motivate customers to make purchases at times that they would not otherwise have done.
- Helping to improve conversations between humans by integrating Artificial Intelligence into communication platforms to capture important information, schedule and manage task tracking and provide accurate language translations in real-time.
6. Blockchain and cryptocurrency technology
Bitcoin is experiencing a certain renaissance. People are excited about what it means for cryptocurrencies and blockchain. Since blockchain emerged as a technology, it has been misinterpreted and distrusted.
Not in 2021, though. Now blockchain is in a position to have a major impact in sectors such as finance as blockchains are increasingly gaining trust from institutional investors and are adopted in the real market as accepted forms of payments.
Being prepared regarding these technological trends for the future is not a bad idea, on the contrary, it is the best thing you could do – to know how to deal with the coming changes before they arrive and take us by surprise.
Are you curious about some of them that we believe will be featured in 2021? If you're wondering how these technologies can help your business not only grow but thrive, we should talk.
Our experts are so enthusiastic about the potential of technology that it will become a reality in 2021. We would love to sit down and help you discover how it can help your company's digital transformation process. Contact us today to find out more.