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15 Tech Trends to Emerge by 2014

Trend 10: Increasing processing power will bring new interface technologies to smart devices, (e.g., voice command and control, biometrics input, motion detection, adaptive response). Within two to three years, users should expect to see a completely revamped means of interfacing with personal devices. This will lead to an explosion of new application capabilities as well as new usage scenarios that will require companies to adopt new interaction paradigms.

Trend 11: By 2013, greater than 67% of browsers accessing the Internet will be on non-PC devices. Internet Explorer will ultimately become a minor player in the browser market, with WebKit-based rendering engines powering the majority of mobile devices, and Mozilla-based browsers being deployed on Linux-based (and Meego-based) larger form factor products. As a result, Web sites will no longer be optimized for PC-based Internet Explorer, but will standardize on WebKit and HTML5 for broad-based browser compatibility.

Trend 12: By 2014, social media will become as important as email to business users. Traditional business instant messaging and presence products from Microsoft and Lotus, which extend their email product suites, will lose market share as more nimble, cloud-based products from non-traditional vendors (e.g., Google, Facebook, Salesforce.com (CRM), Oracle (ORCL), Cisco (CSCO)) become business-hardened and accessible by mobile users.

Trend 13: The advent of consumerization of IT, bring your own device to work, and the renewed power of the end user to determine strategy will force corporate IT groups to dramatically alter their function. By 2013 to 2014, those corporate IT departments that have not enabled a diverse population of devices and end-user choices through emphasis on manageability, policy enforcement and security evaluations will become hopelessly outmoded and struggle to function. This will cause chaos and substantially raise the total cost of ownership of the organization.

Trend 14: By 2012, enterprise-application vendors that don't offer a substantial portion of their functionality enabled on mobile smart devices will be unable to sell their solutions to a large portion of businesses. Vendors concentrating on SMB solutions will be required to enable mobile smart devices by 2013 or face obsolescence and shrinking sales.

Trend 15: Solution vendors that do not adapt to the rising tide of cloud computing and software as a service for mobile users will face a significant market disadvantage by 2013 to 2014, as standardized access technology (e.g., HTML5) matures and is widely accepted. Further, the increasing diversity of devices will prevent software vendors from optimizing for each device type, and instead seek ways to universally develop and deploy solutions. Development tools/environments that provide support for the maximum number of mobile ecosystems will be highly valued.

Jack Gold is the founder and principal analyst at J. Gold Associates, an information-technology analysis firm in Northborough, Mass., covering the many aspects of business and consumer computing and emerging technologies.
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