Have you seen an episode of The Jetson’s lately? While we’ve not ditched our cars for space-mobiles just yet, 2016’s technology developments certainly got us closer to living life like George, Jane, Judy and Elroy. Here’s our take on the biggest five changes and developments that affected our homes and businesses this year.
1. Streaming takes over
In the world of television and video, the buyer’s choice between satellite and cable is no longer that simple. Devices like Roku, Google’s Chromecast, and Amazon’s Firestick were updated in 2016 and became all the more pervasive in the average American home. The “cutting the cord” lifestyle became trendy and communication companies have begun adapting to meet the needs of these buyers. A great example being ESPN – the network is now able to be consumed in a variety of ways, outside of the traditional cable package.
2. Shareable Live Experiences
Apps like Facebook, Youtube, and Snapchat all worked diligently in 2016 to integrate live experiences within their app interfaces. The most notable release this year being Facebook’s LIVE feature, which they’ve pushed heavily in recent weeks with an entire ad campaign aimed at encouraging users to share moments from their daily lives with friends. Snapchat also emerged as a major player in this arena in 2016– encouraging additional usage with new filters and lenses that help create a fresh experience daily. We think companies will continue to focus in on this area in 2017, making it easier to connect and share experiences around the world.
3. Virtual Reality
Many companies began to really experiment with virtual reality in 2016, Oculus Rift being one of the most notable, bringing life-like gaming to the average consumer. We think more companies will begin sticking their toes into the virtual reality water in 2017– there’s some unique opportunities outside of gaming, like video conferencing and events that could change the game for businesses. Imagine attending all of Dreamforce right from your living room… all possible with developments in this area.
4. Connected home, Connected business
The connected home became all the more prevalent in 2016, with Amazon releasing it’s smaller Echo Dot, and Google jumping into the game with the Google Home. Getting the weather, your meeting schedule, and even turning on your security systems via Alexa, Siri, or the Google Assistant became stylish in 2016. These devices make task management easier, and information available with just a phrase– no typing, or even moving necessary. We think 2017 will see more and more business processes move toward this connected lifestyle with your work calendar become a key component of integration.
5. Everything is moving to the cloud
Infrastructure continues to be the modern business’s biggest enemy, as more and more business processes are now able to be moved to the cloud. Storage, data, even security processes are now able to be accessed, controlled and deployed via the cloud. Not to toot our own horns, but we’ve played a part in this particular development with our own cloud APIs for calling and texting. In our lifestyle as consumers, our photos, videos, app passwords, home security systems, and so much more are completely cloud-driven.
Any other major tech developments you think missed the cut? Let us hear about them in the comments!