Each January, the I.T. industry reveals predictions for the upcoming year, so we’ve scoured the news sources and added our own insights. But first, let’s see how 2011’s predictions manifested.
‘3D without the glasses’ was a great engineering feat but hasn’t hit mainstream manufacturing for your living room just yet. Monetizing social media (e.g. Facebook, Twitter etc.) has also not been widely adopted, with many businesses still scratching their heads over how to accomplish this. Facebook advertising, social media competitions and promotional codes all seem to be small steps towards this. Location-based services gained more momentum (especially with the rise of FourSquare) and with Apple re-securing a patent relating to locations, expect to hear more about these services in the future. Tablets did indeed move into the world of business, forcing I.T departments to adopt strategies for securing and supporting these devices. And last but not least, the adoption of cloud computing could not be more varied, with some companies transitioning to it completely while others are still wary of security & availability.
So what’s in store during 2012? Here are the top picks for the year ahead:
Smartphones are normal – We now have a generation of ‘smartphone literate’ kids who would never turn on a computer if they could find what they need from their mobile phone. Though we first mentioned this in 2010, if you still don’t have a mobile version of your website, give that some serious thought in 2012. With the internet in their pocket, people will research, locate and share like never before.
E-commerce here to stay – Sadly, 2011 saw the demise of some well-known American retailers, with the effect spreading to other locations too. Online stores will have to shout out their point of difference or play the pricing game to compete with one another, as shoppers easily compare items between stores. Are traditional retailers going to continue to struggle to keep up or will they adopt new strategies to exploit their ‘buy now, use it now’ capability? eBooks will continue to push through this paradigm in reverse though, as electronic delivery to your device is faster & cheaper than purchasing in store.
Mobile payments – MasterCard and VISA both rolled out ‘contactless’ payment systems last year, opening the doors for this capability on your mobile phone. Google is firmly pursuing this with the Google Wallet smartphone application, creating another advertising revenue stream for itself. Maybe in late 2012 you’ll leave your real wallet at home?
Social Media is normal – The sparkle may wear off social media but it will remain a powerful, uniting communication medium. Businesses will be forced to accept it as part of their marketing strategy or be left behind by competitors that have embraced it.
And though it can’t really be classed as a prediction, Microsoft will launch its Windows 8 operating system in early 2012, replacing the Start Menu with touchable, updating panel icons.
Whatever the I.T. industry delivers in 2012, contact Computer Troubleshooters to discuss how it can benefit your business or for any of your computing needs.