Here are some quick thoughts on what I see for 2013
Tablets: I posted back in September that I thought tablets would not make it for business, with hardware allowing tablet integration into the business infrastructure (keyboards, displays etc) being disjointed and ‘gadgety’. I think I need to revise this, with a tablet being sold every 4 minutes in the run up to Christmas it has to be a strong contender for business via the Bring Your Own Device’ brigade for 2013. These users will see past all the issues of integration and push tablets into use within the Business. The Phablet (a Phone with a screen of 5-6 inches ) is one to watch, with the convenience of a phone but a screen big enough to work on, to date they are few and far between in the market but with a bigger iPhone on the horizon these sized devices cannot be overlooked.
Crowd Funding Websites: Still a buzz word towards the end of 2012, with Kickstarter (the best known Crowd Funding website) coming to the UK in late 2012. We should see a surge of interest in Crowd Funding during 2013 hitting the mainstream businesses looking for funding, the Google UK trends graph (below) shows how Crowd Funding is sparking interest this will only continue in the future as more sources come to the market.
Gesture Control comes to the desktop: Asus is to start bundling Leap Motion’s (https://leapmotion.com/) gesture control technology with all new PC’s in 2013. Whilst a gimmick at first I can see more mainstream adoption towards the end of 2013.
Cloud ready Laptops: Look at the top selling Laptop on Amazon and you will see the Chromebook, a laptop dedicated to working in the cloud. This new breed of laptops will start to see in roads in business with those people wanting the convenience of a Tablet but can’t live without the Keyboard/Mouse etc. It‘s light, portable with a good battery life and accessible price . The Chromebook is an extremely basic laptop, designed to only run Chrome OS, a version of the Google Chrome Web Browser. By itself this is rather limited but start tying it into all the cloud based applications (Mail, CRM, Task Lists, Documents) etc its uses become unlimited. Whilst it works best in the Google Infrastructure, it is certainly not limited to it. Looking around I found Web based apps, for Photo manipulation, Drawing, 3D Design, Games (obviously), Social Apps, Remote Desktop and Travel on top of those that you would expect to find i.e Mail, CRM, Documents and File Sharing.
3D Printers: Whilst not ready for the mainstream consmer the use of 3d printing will become bigger in the manufacturing and design process in 2013 but for most of us this will go unseen until the software and hardware becomes more consumer driven.
Cloud Based Working: Yes, yawn!! this has been around for some time now but I still know more people who don’t use it effectively than do, meaning it will still be affecting business for a good few years to come, embedding itself as the norm.
Co-working: With Cloud comes the flexibility of location, working from home and setting up in remote places becomes easier and more desirable but with this comes lack of suitable work spaces and comradery. Coworking, where office space and services are setup to give users access to flexible ad hoc accommodation with like minded people will become more desirable. Cohub is one such location in Eastbourne, unlike a traditional serviced office, work spaces are communal giving you a suitable place to work but not removing you from the social/collaborative atmospehere of an office.
What do you think?