2017 was a “amazing” year for the technology sector, studded with almost fantastic new gadgets, predictable discoveries and spectacular breakdowns.
All very interesting, undoubtedly. And, if we think of some debuts or returns, 2017 changes appearance. But what will 2018 bring? Here are some of the (most likely) Forecasts.
1. Talking devices
Alexa’s fever has spread and most of the biggest technology producers are working to perfect their “vocal helpers”.
In 2018, companies like Amazon and Google will compete for the sceptre of a whole vocal ecosystem.
After Google repeatedly banned Amazon from including YouTube on Echo Show, Amazon finally sold and accepted Google hardware.
2. Virtual reality
It was assumed that virtual reality would take control of the world. But wearing a pair of glasses and playing video games or watching videos is not what many expected.
In 2018, much of this technology could be massaged with something at everyone’s fingertips: the smartphone.
The augmented reality superimposed on the digital images to the real world, through the camera of the device.
Smartphones include powerful AR technology so that anyone with a fast enough device can try it. For example, with Apple’s ARKit, iOS apps can map a room and use realistic and changeable lighting to make their objects more harmonious.
3. Google invites you to experiment with photo apps
Most of the smartphone camera updates have focused on improving the actual camera, on how to pack have more pixels or a larger sensor in a limited space.
Now, companies like Google are opting to move on to the next level. The Pixel 2 smartphone is able to detect the outline of a subject and blur the background and the company has recently launched some small photographic applications.
Expect big improvements in the appearance of your photos, such as less noise in low light conditions and new fun tricks.
4. Robot for the streets
The robots are also invading the streets. No, we’re not talking about a real invasion. Many companies already develop robots that circulate in hotels, hospitals, deliver mail or bring food home.
They use a combination of GPS, sensors and cameras to navigate. But they suffered some problems: a security robot in San Francisco, for example, was beaten for falsely launching the homelessness alarm on private property. Perhaps, it is the case to improve something.
5. SmartHomes that allow strangers to enter
You’re not at home, but this does not mean that technology companies can not switch and leave your order for dinner or a package ordered online.
Amazon launched this strange category of services in early 2017 that allow couriers to access your home through a special smart lock. Expect more collaboration between delivery services and smart home technology over the next year.
6. Your Internet rate may change
Most likely, you now pay a fixed monthly fee for your Internet connection. Some companies apply different prices for more or less fast connections, but do not limit other services.
The recent repeal of the FCC network neutrality rules has opened the door for Internet service providers to experiment with different pricing structures.
In theory, you could pay more for a Netflix and Amazon Prime Video subscription, or social networks could be an additional monthly cost.
It is likely that any change will start small, as companies evaluate customer reactions and see if this leads to a flight to competition (where there is).