Eight tech predictions for 2022

Eight big tech changes predicted for this year

What the tech world could have in store for us this coming year, as we look at the big trends and changes having the biggest impact in the tech space.

1. Use of big data and analytics will be more widespread

High end data processing was once limited to large corporations with deep pockets. Google was the first to make their imense data processing capabilities available to anyone with a modest budget, with their Big Data and BigQuery.

The significance of this is allowing smaller organisations to query large sets of data for example to target a marketing campaign, or to find an niche opportunity. These data sets have been typically too large for traditional desktop computers or mainstream servers to handle.

2. Home battery storage tech will be the new green solution

Towards the end of last year we've seen wholesale energy prices rise. Electricity prices have doubled and gas prices have quadrupled. If you haven't already felt these price increases yet, perhaps because you're still in a fixed rate period, you'll certainly notice them when your fixed period ends.

Unlike your home electricity price, which is typically the same for any hour of the day, wholesale prices vary considerably by the half hour. Early evening being the most expensive time to generate electricity when demand is high, and the early hours of the night being the cheapest, when demand is lowest. Many energy companies are offering smart tariffs that change depending on the time of day, or even ones that change every half hour. Some tariffs offer free electricity time slots, or even slots where you get paid to consume electricity.

By adding battery storage to your home, and more specifically, once that can integrate with your smart tariff, you can charge your battery in the middle of night when prices are very low or free, and run your house for the next day with what's in your battery.

This integration between your battery, your energy company, and other home devices such as your solar panels and your car charger is where we'll see an explosion in innovation this year.

3. Bitcoin will become even more mainstream

I'm sure you've heeard it many times before, and the sceptics out there may not agree. For many years we've felt that Bitcoin will become recognised as a legitimate asset. Initially conceived as a decentralised currency, it has now become more of an investment than a currency. It's a very risky investment it must be stated.

The fact that institutional investors have started aquiring Bitcoin and other crypto assests, leads us to beleive this growth is set to increase this year. Bitcoin is a little forgotten about right now, but we think it's due for another surge, and a new all time high this year.

Warning: don't invest in Bitcoin unless you know what you're doing, and can afford the risk.

4. NFTs will hit mainstream

Non-Fungible Tokens or NFTs are digital items that can be bought and sold with a record of who holds them on a blockchain. Sound confusing? Just like with Bitcoin, there's a lot to get your head around with NFTs.

We're seeing a lot of hype surrounding NFTs and expect it to be one of the big buzzwords of this year. We also expect a lot of poeple to get their fingers burned dabbling with them, on the back of stories of a few people making millions in profit from buying just the right NFTs at just the right time.

Our opinion is that NFTs are very much in their infancy, and it's just too diffficult to know at this stage what technology is going to stick around, or fall by the wayside. It'll be very interesting watching this space develop and mature.

5. Metaverse will get started and be the first introduction of augmented reality to many.

As the next step from AI, the Metaverse is likely to be the first experience of an augmented reality for many. The company behind Facebook, now rebranded to Meta will be pushing their Metaverse this year, and you're likely to hear a lot about it.

'3D spaces in the metaverse will let you socialise, learn, collaborate and play in ways that go beyond what we can imagine' is how they describe it, and it will open up many business opportunities. For example, viewing museums virtually, joining groups of work collegues virtually, or special interest groups. Each of these activityies can have subsciption options attached to them, and of course, they're all on one platform - Facebook, or Meta as it's now branded.

Scary, or excitiing? We see it as a bit of both. Exciting from a tech persective, whilst at the same time a step away from reality and the real world.

6. Increase in privacy awareness & cybersecurity

Because of increased use of AI tech, there will be an increased awareness and interest in cybersecurity and privacy. There will be natural concerns over how much data and personal informaton large players in the AI field hold about us.

We expect a rise in the number of privacy apps and cybersecurity products available, as people become uncomfortable with the ammount of their personal data being commercialised. Expect a point where these become essential for those looking at this changing tech space without the rose-tinted glasses.

7. Growth in AI assisted tech

We're already familiar with basic AI in our home automation. For example, your thermostat turns on your heating when your location is detected approaching your house. We expect to see increased use of AI as the algorithms become more specialised and sophisticated. Particular areas to watch are healthcare, such as cancer screening. Studies have already found AI to be as accurate and sometimes more accurate than humans at spotting cancers.

Logistics is another area already making use of AI for maximum efficiency of delivery routes and vehicle loading. Self driving cars already use neural networks to process billions of data points in real time and will only set to get better.

As connectivity increases, we can expect to see more areas taking advantage of remote data processing, or neural networks of interconnected devices making collaborative decisions.

8. Satellite based internet connectivity

This is one that we expected to become mainstream last year, with Elon Musk's Starlink. It's already rolled out in many parts of the world, and is slowly rolling out across the UK. Offering speeds simialr to a home fibre connection of 80Mbps, it's a viable option for rural communities where fibre to the cabinet connecions have not arrived.

In more urban areas, we expect to see 5G become common, offering consumers fast always on connections that they can take with them.

Private 5G for larger industries is likely to become a thing, much like a private leased line is today, but without the physical location constraints. This will allow 'Inernet of Things' or IoT become more popular as we see many more inductrial devices interconnected, much like we already have traffic signals, travel information signs, and the like. Expect to see more home devices come with connectivity as standard.

What do you think of our predictions? Do you think we'll see some of this in the coming year, or are we way off the mark?

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