Top 12 Technology Trends for 2021
As an industry leading integrator of advanced technology access solutions, Qypsys helps customers keep up with constantly changing connectivity needs – designing scalable, flexible, and sustainable infrastructures delivering the throughput and capacity required. Learn about the top 12 technology trends for 2021 Qypsys says companies should focus on to stay competitive in the year(s) ahead.
Internet of Things (IoT) Technology
Internet of Things (IoT) is a catch-all term used to describe the ever-increasing number of physical devices, that aren’t traditionally considered computing devices (a.k.a. things) now capable of being connected to the internet, able to send/receive data, instructions, etc. Use of IoT technology and IoT enabled devices will continue to grow exponentially in 2021.
With recent advancements in IoT technology capabilities and expected exponential growth, networks need to be able to:
- Handle more connected devices at one time
- Deliver faster speeds
- Deliver superior reliability and a better user experience
- Be flexible and adaptable – capable of quickly bringing new technologies online
Companies will require 5G capabilities and a network infrastructure capable of supporting it to stay connected and competitive in 2021.
Operating from Anywhere
The COVID-19 pandemic forced entire industries to revamp their business models. And armed with new tools and technology advancements, many companies began focusing efforts on developing an operating from anywhere strategy. As companies were forced into re-evaluating employee work from home policies, a large majority learned, over the last year, that many negative preconceived notions regarding employee performance no longer held true.
As 2021 approaches, companies are seriously considering maintaining the status quo, leaving operating from anywhere policies in place. And many companies in digitally driven industries have already begun transitioning to semi-permanent or permanent operating from anywhere practices taking advantage of downsizing their square footage in the expensive urban tech core and expanding recruiting efforts beyond the previous geographic location restrictions.
Expanding Cloud-Based Technologies
As companies expand operating from anywhere business practices, use of cloud-based technologies will also continue to grow. This will most likely be one of the most noticeable technology trends for 2021. There will be a significant increase in demand for cloud-based solutions and services that can deliver greater agility and flexibility. And making network infrastructure improvements will be a necessity for many companies to support new technology capabilities.
Increased Use of Smart Building Technology
Companies unable to implement or expand operate from anywhere business practices will also likely increase demand and their use of cloud-based services and solutions. Smart building technology can deliver seamless integrations of a building’s entire ecosystem. It can leverage connections between formerly independent networks. It can be used to interact with building systems and controls. And it can be used to collect real time data, on a plethora of key metrics when paired with open API integration options.
The Rise of the Internet of Behavior (IoB)
More affordable, more accessible, and improved smart building technology and IoT technology capabilities are leading to the rise of another ‘internet of’ subset, referred to as the IoB or the Internet of Behavior. Using this technology, businesses are able to collect unprecedented levels of IoB data. And through the collection of, use, and analysis of IoB data, businesses will be able to use it to transform the workplace in many different ways.
Artificial Intelligence (AI) in the Workplace
AI can help companies decipher the IoB data collected and gain valuable insights. AI insights may include identifying important patterns, alerting companies to changes in important patterns, uncovering and isolating trends, monitoring customer behaviors, tracking key metrics, providing detailed reports and more. Plus, all of this can be done by AI in less time and requires less effort than manual interpretations of metrics would take.
Using AI to Augment the Workforce
AI can be used to identify manual, repetitive tasks and perform the functions of those tasks, often in a small percentage of the time required to perform them manually. In most scenarios, the intent of introducing AI is not to replace workers, but instead, use AI as a tool to simplify operations. This can help improve productivity, and allow employees to focus on more important, creative, skilled, complex, and impactful work instead.
Using AI to Improve the Customer Experience
Customer operations can use AI to automate administrative tasks, such as automating standard customer service updates, saving time, and reducing human error. Customer service teams can use AI-operated chatbots to help handle direct interactions with customers, to assist with customer inquiries and/or complaints, and provide timely, accurate support services.
Using AI to Assist with Cybersecurity
Many companies are facing new cybersecurity threats as they quickly transition and adapt to modified work environments. Companies will require new solutions to protect proprietary information, trade secrets, and consumer privacy. AI can help companies monitor cybersecurity threats and alert companies to potential breaches. And cybersecurity solutions with AI integrations specifically designed to protect operating from anywhere business practices will be in high demand.
Establish Resilient Delivery Systems
The COVID-19 pandemic also uncovered an operational flaw many eCommerce companies had to quickly overcome to continue operating. Over the years fulfillment centers had been optimizing operations performance, expressly focused on driving efficiency. However, as different aspects of their operational model were compromised during the pandemic, many companies found that efficiency optimizations were hindering adaptability and additional operational protocols had to be put into place to deliver the flexibility to continue operating. In worst case scenarios, entire operations would grind to a halt until more flexible alternatives could be established.
We expect many companies to learn from this experience and spend time in the upcoming year to establish flexible, resilient delivery systems to prevent similar issues in the future.
Voice Technology Trends of 2021
Finally, the twelfth technology trend of 2021 focuses on the popular topic of voice technology. Every year for the past few years, we’ve seen the same voice technology predictions – industry experts expecting voice search and voice commerce to experience rapid growth. And every year the actual numbers fall significantly short of these flourishing predictions. Our technology experts at Qypsys predict this year won’t be any different.
However, our experts do predict that a different fo