Technology is currently evolving at a rapid pace, leading to exponential changes and progress in various sectors. This is fueled by various factors, including the recent Coronavirus outbreak that affected most sectors in the year 2020 and the increasing urge by parents wanting their kids to learn to code. The outbreak made IT professionals realize the importance of integrating technology into various sectors, especially with increasing demand for a contactless future. With such rapid developments, it is beneficial to stay in touch with technology trends of the future.
Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence
AI, lengthily known as artificial intelligence, generated a buzz and is among the top technology trends due to its notable effects on various sectors. Initially, AI was known for its superior functionality in speech and image recognition, smartphone assistants, navigations, and ride-sharing applications.
Besides this, modern AI applications include analyzing interactions, predicting demands in hospitals, product demands, and customer behavior changes through data analysis. This leads to increased personal experience and revenues. With such applications, the AI industry is expected to grow to an approximated $190 billion industry over the next five years.
Extensive use of AI will also create new job opportunities through developing, programming, testing, maintaining, and supporting AI equipment. Fortunately, AI is among the few sectors with high salaries, with AI architects netting $145,000 while their machine learning counterparts earn $1,250,000 annually.
Cloud computing was a technology trend to watch in the last decade, with AWS, Microsoft Azure (if you are interested in this one, check out Azure Consulting first), and Google Cloud being the major players in the sector. However, even as more companies shift to cloud solutions, edge computing has overtaken it as an emerging trend for various reasons.
For starters, the continually rising amount of data collected by organizations have led to serious limitations of cloud computing. On the other hand, edge computing helps bypass latencies associated with cloud computing in transferring data to data centers. Edge computing is a perfect solution for businesses that need to transfer time-sensitive data to remote locations with little or no connectivity.
Edge computing is poised to boost the use of IoT to an estimated $6.72 billion by 2022. As this new technology grows, it will likely create more opportunities for software engineers.
Virtual and Augmented Reality
Virtual and augmented realities are another set of technological trends for 2021. As you may know, virtual reality immerses users in real-life environments while augmented reality enhances practicality. These technologies have primary gaming applications but are currently applied in software simulation training, such as VirtualShip used to train the U.S Army, Navy, and Coast Guard.
In 2021, these technologies will be immersed in human lives further. Since the technologies work in tandem with other technologies, VR and AR have great potential in the entertainment, marketing, education, injury rehabilitation, and other sectors. With more than 14 million VR and AR devices sold in the previous year, the global market might surpass the $209.2 billion mark by the end of the year.
Robotic Process Automation
Just like machine learning and artificial intelligence, robotic process automation is a technology trend that prioritizes job automation. This involves using automation software for various business processes, such as transactions, data collection, sorting applications, replying to emails, and other repetitive tasks.
While most people think that RPA threatens the source of livelihood for more than 230 million workers, it is also a source of employment. Besides, a study found that only 5 percent of business processes can be automated totally, while 60% can be automated partially. IT professionals looking to understand technology trends should look into robotic process automation for career opportunities.
Quantum computing is another commendable technology trend to watch out for in 2021. This computing process utilizes computing quantum phenomena, such as entanglement and superposition. This technology’s real benefits were evident through its effectiveness in preventing the spread of COVID-19 and developing vaccines.
The technology can be used in the finance sector to manage customer credit risks and high-frequency fraud detection and trading. Quantum computers are several times faster than normal computers. The trend also has a future, with giant brands such as Microsoft, Google, and Honeywell taking leading roles in innovating quantum computing.
5G technology is another force to reckon in the tech world. While the previous 3G and 4G technologies have made it easy to browse, increased streaming bandwidths, and more, 5G is expected to revolutionize human life. The technology enables other advanced technologies, such as VR, AR, cloud computing, and more. 5G will also be used in industries and hospital sectors to improve traffic, safety, and smart grid control.
Various technologies will undergo a lot of refinement in the year 2021, especially following the recent challenges brought by the coronavirus pandemic in the previous year. As a result, keeping tabs and learning these technology trends is important for individuals and businesses alike.
Other tech and business trends that IT professionals should look into include intelligent apps, data science, Blockchain, and the Internet of Things.