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New tech trends could lose ground in 2016: A contrarian view

Technologies often launch with great expectation, only to see limited uptake. Stanley Louissaint highlights a few tech trends that may see reversals or fail to fully emerge in 2016.

Technology is and will always be fast changing.  There are many new innovative technologies that come out but yet not everything sticks.  This past year we have seen some new tech trends, but in the year to come, 2016, some of these trends will lose ground. Here are a few examples:

The tablet onslaught

It was reported that 2015 would be the year that the PC would die and tablets would take over.  Well let's just say that hasn't happened.  According to IDC, tablet shipments were down -12.6% year over year as of the third quarter of 2015.  That is the fourth straight quarter in which tablet shipments have declined.  One of the major reasons for this shift is market saturation.  A lot of users purchased tablets during the "craze" and since then have held onto their units.  The stats show that users keep their tablets for approximately four years before they decide to replace.

I also believe that tablets, although they have a place, are to be used as one of the tools in your arsenal.  Every tool serves a distinct purpose.  Additionally, the release of new tablets that are detachable, such as the Microsoft Surface or HP Envy, shows that the market is changing.  Through the use of these hybrids we are able to provide users with the best of two worlds, having a laptop and tablet.

 The rise of IoT

The Internet of Things (IoT) is a confusing place.  The main focal point around IoT is that all devices equipped with sensors will report back to home base and provide data.  The issue around these devices has been the lack of interconnection between them and our existing environments.  These devices have also been disjointed and it will be a while until we truly understand where they fit into our business customer's model.  At this point we cannot answer the fundamental question, "How will this increase my efficiency or revenue?"  Once we can answer that, then our clients will be inclined to partake in this market.  Until then, we have to wait for the market to mature properly.

The cloud as default IT choice

Managed service providers and solution providers will stop looking at the cloud as an end-all and be-all solution.  The cloud has a specific purpose and that purpose is different for each organization.  In the future, we service providers will not just throw things into the cloud just because.  I know many people have assumed that the cloud is the ultimate IT destination.  But in the coming year we will have to know why it is best for the businesses to migrate applications or services to the cloud.

NFC's dramatic expansion

Near Field Communication (NFC) is another technology that was supposed to change the world in 2015.  Smartphones and mobile payment options were supposed to play a role in helping NFC take the world by storm.  Well, we are still waiting for that to occur and I don't think 2016 will prove to be the big year either.  We have just started using chip technology in our credit cards here in the U.S. and have yet to get a handle on that transition. User adoption has to happen for this trend to take off and, frankly, it's not happening in the near future. 

The new tech trends that weren't

This is the time of year in which we reflect on what was and what wasn't.  It's interesting to consider the new tech trends that we thought would take off at the start of the year but didn't.

Now, we'll wait and see what 2016 brings.   

Next Steps

 

Review the top channel and IT industry events of 2015

Read about channel trends expected to emerge in 2016

Find out what partners think about their prospects for 2016

This was last published in December 2015

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Excellent article. The section about the cloud was spot on - you need to use the right tool for the right job. In addition, you need to validate the performance of the cloud and virtual solutions to make sure they deliver the anticipated results.
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