As the year 2015 came to a close, it was also a period which has laid the foundation for some of the dominant technology trends which is going to become mainstream during the course of this calendar. The advent of smartphones, connected devices and social media has given rise to the digital world which has sort of blurred the boundaries between the physical and virtual reality.
These changes are something which even enterprises are fully cognisant about and it is expected that digital technologies are going to be the defining force in the year 2016. Every business today needs to have digital front to remain relevant and there is no escaping the fact all technologies will revolve around this theme.
Leading analyst body Gartner recently spoke about the top 10 technology trends for 2016. David Cearley, vice-president and Gartner Fellow, said, “The first three trends address merging the physical and virtual worlds and the emergence of the digital mesh. While organisations focus on digital business today, algorithmic business is emerging. Algorithms— relationships and interconnections —define the future of business. In algorithmic business, much happens in the background in which people are not directly involved. This is enabled by smart machines, which our next three trends address. Our final four trends address the new IT reality, the new architecture and platform trends needed to support digital and algorithmic business.”
Already few of the businesses and enterprises are going on the digital highway which brings together many elements into one wholesome strategy. The idea being that the consumer today has multiple touchpoints and the best way to reach out to them will be through digital. As Tata Consultancy Services CEO N Chandrasekaran in his annual e-mail to all the employees said, “Digital technology is evolving rapidly and it is becoming mainstream. This is presenting tremendous opportunities for the future and at the same time is forcing every business to reimagine and rethink their products, services and business models. Every company needs to build a digital interface to their physical assets and entities in order to deliver superior customer experience.”
Connected to the digital enterprise will be host of other technologies which will act both as the carrier and delivery at the end points. According to Pitney Bowes, as businesses examine their physical and digital strategies, there will be five key drivers of commerce for 2016: The Internet of Things (IoT) technologies will drive better business outcomes, small and medium businesses will greatly benefit from the digitisation of physical communications, personalisation and hyper-localisation will drive explosive growth in global commerce, data analytics will play a key role in fraud detection and prevention and lastly omnichannel marketing will increasingly use data analytics and optimise physical and digital technologies to deliver a seamless experience for the customer.
Here Internet of Things (IoT) is expected to one of the key strategies for organisations to remain connected with the digital world. IoT will be the final technology connector as more number of devices will be now be connected to the internet. Eric Torres, vice-president, corporate strategy— special projects, Tata Communications, said, “Internet of Things is one of the most talked about technology trends today and is expected to have a significant impact on the technology landscape and society-at-large in the coming years. However, the growing number of connected devices also raises concerns for data security, especially around data collection, management and data mining. IoT brings forth the need for tight linkages between information security, IT security, operational technology security and physical security. As a result, IoT and cloud will work hand-in-hand.”
Data security is expected to be a big driver during the course of this year as copious amount of information will be stored on the virtual world especially on a device in hand. The threats are real for both the consumers and enterprises. “Connected devices, especially mobile phones, are increasingly used to manage online activities and store essential and private information, making these devices attractive to thieves and cyber-attackers. As we continue to store more of our lives on multiple devices, it is vital that we take their security seriously. We hear that so many of today’s consumers say they struggle to find an appropriate internet security solution,” said Elena Kharchenko, head of consumer product management, Kaspersky Lab.
These key trends will have a direct bearing on the $146 billion Indian IT industry as it reinvents itself to meet the growing business opportunities. PN Sudarshan, partner, Deloitte in India said, “In 2015, we saw cloud adoption, automation technology, analytics and mobile technologies being the major trends for the year —there were large contracts awarded in these areas as well as some significant acquisitions by Indian and global firms. Though some of these trends have been spoken of in the past, the increased adoption by the Fortune 1000 companies is significantly shifting the IT companies’ offering portfolios to reflect these trends.” He adds: “Much like Nasscom does, we also
expect that a majority of the global incremental IT spend will be driven by various technologies in the social, mobility, analytics, cloud (SMAC) and cybersecurity domain.”
* Digital technologies will increasingly become mainstream and IT companies will have to deliver their services and solutions around this theme
* Internet of Things (IoT) is expected to be a big driver as more devices get connected to the web
* Cloud will play a significant role in enabling the digital world
* Mobility will be a key driver
* Data security will remain uppermost on the minds of both consumers and enterprises