Here at GiNi Inc., we keep an eye on which emerging technologies have the most potential for near-term business impact, so that we customize our solutions accordingly.
Chatbots, logistics, self-driving cars, virtual nursing assistants, personalized textbooks and tutors, and even artificial creativity: These are just a few of the applications that narrow AI can improve or bring to light in the coming years.
5G and the Internet of Things
5G may not seem very exciting. We already have 4G, so what’s another G? But the difference will be exponential. 5G networks may ultimately be 100 times faster than 4G, allowing many more devices to connect, reducing latency to practically zero, and providing more reliable signals.
This wireless technology will provide the backbone for the internet of things (IoT), which will expand the power of the internet beyond computers and across a wide range of objects, processes, and environments. The IoT is the keystone technology for such futuristic scenes as smart cities, robot-driven agriculture, and self-driving highway systems.
For businesses, this one-two combo will continue recent trends and power them to the next level. Remote offices become more dependable under the 5G paradigm, and real-time data sharing of, say, live events or desktop captures will be seamless. As for the IoT, it helps remove intermediate steps that bog down productivity.
Serverless computing isn’t truly “serverless.” Sans tapping into some seriously dark arts, it’s impossible to provide computational resources without a physical server somewhere. Instead, this technology distributes those resources more effectively. When an application is not in use, no resources are allocated. When they are needed, the computing power auto-scales.
This technological shift means companies no longer need to worry over infrastructure or reserving bandwidth, which in turn promises the golden ticket of ease of use and cost savings. One of the beauties of this architecture is that you get charged by the cloud provider only when a service runs. You don’t need to pay for idle capacity—or even think about capacity. Basically, the runtime sits idle waiting for an event to occur, whereupon the appropriate function gets swapped into the runtime and executes. So you can build out a big, complex application without incurring charges for anything until execution occurs.
The first industrial robot punched the clock in 1962. Technological advancements have steadily widened robotics’ workforce representation since, and in the coming years, robots will continue moving from factories to First Street to perform rudimentary tasks such as cleaning and delivery.
With hardware costs lowering, processing power increasing, and high-profile players such as Google and Facebook entering the game, virtual reality’s day may have finally come. And the more widespread acceptance of augmented reality apps in smartphones may make such technologies an easier sell moving forward.
The recently announced Microsoft Mesh and its competitors hope to capitalize on our new remote-work era. The concept combines these “mixed-reality” technologies to create virtual shared spaces that business teams can use to hold meetings or work on projects.
And Peter Diamandis, chairman and CEO of the XPRIZE Foundation, imagines this technology can revolutionize the customer experience in retail. Customers could, for example, try clothes on a virtual avatar or sit in their amphitheater seats before making a purchase.