As we enter the fourth industrial revolution, the rate of technological change is accelerating and becoming more unpredictable and unprecedented. We predict more companies like Toys R’ US who fail to innovate or embrace technological advances will fall to the waist side as well.
Northeast Capital Fund II understands the key to surviving this new industrial revolution is to lead it; which requires two key elements of agile business. First, the awareness of disruptive technology and a plan to develop talent that can make the most of it. With so many technologies emerging on so many fronts, it’s a challenge to keep up; not every emerging technology will alter the business or social landscape, but some truly possess the potential to disrupt the status quo, alter the way people live and work, and rearrange value pools” (Pluralsight, 2019).
1. Mobile Internet Interfaces, formats, sensors and apps will evolve as mobile computing devices dominate internet connectivity. By 2025, mobile connectivity could be accessed by an additional 4.3 billion people.
2. Artificial Intelligence Machine learning and user interfaces such as speech and gesture recognition technology will advance to increase productivity or eliminate some knowledge work altogether.
3. Virtual and augmented reality Goldman Sachs is betting on the virtual and augmented reality industry to become an $80 billion market by 2025 – it’s around $7 billion right now. Major upgrades will come to technology infrastructure and an ecosystem of apps will form for consumers and enterprises alike.
4. Cloud technology One of the biggest buzzwords of the last decade will continue to impact the next; nearly all IT services and web apps could be delivered through the cloud, with more enterprises using the public cloud as cyber security improves.
5. Internet of Things More than 9 billion devices are currently connected to the internet – that number is estimated to grow between 50 billion to nearly 1 trillion in the next decade. Organizations will face monitoring and securing products, systems, devices and even people.
6. Advanced robotics Advances in artificial intelligence, machine vision, sensors, motors, hydraulics and materials will change the way products and services are delivered. A surge in tech talent for building, operating and maintaining advanced robots will occur.
7. Biometric technology A recent survey of security professionals revealed that 72 percent of companies are planning to drop traditional passwords by 2025. This will give rise to new authorization services for face, voice, eye, hand and signature identification.
8. 3D printing 3D printing could enable unprecedented levels of mass customization and dramatically reduce the cost of supply chains generating an estimated economic impact of $230 to $550 billion annually by 2025.
9. Genomics Genetic engineering technology will grow with faster computer processing speeds. DNA sequencing technologies and advanced analytics will improve agricultural production, reduce reliance on fossil fuels and extend human life expectancy.
10. Blockchain Blockchain is best known in the context of virtual currency Bitcoin, but a recent report showed 64 different use cases of blockchain across 200 companies. Streamlined, secure contracting and transacting will drive commercial use.
Wildcard: Quantum computing The application and adoption of quantum computing is unclear, but the technology is moving beyond the hype. Google’s Quantum AI Laboratory predicts that small quantum technologies will be commercially available in five years and will help businesses increase revenue, reduce costs and lower investments in infrastructure.