Published on January 9, 2014
TECH TRENDS 2014 Thursday, January 9, 14
TECH TRENDS 2014 frogs from around the world predict the 15 most significant technology trends you will see in the coming year. www.frogdesign.com/techtrends2014 2 Thursday, January 9, 14
ANONYMITY WILL GO MAINSTREAM BY JOHN LEONARD, ADAM SILVER, AND CARLOS ELENA-LENZ The age of indiscriminate sharing on social networks is rapidly changing. In 2013 we learned of NSA leaks, privacy debacles, and massive inquiries into our digital lives. Simultaneously, a social platform based on transmitting communications with minimal digital tracks was valued at $4 billion. This isn’t a coincidence; scrutiny is playing an important role in how we sculpt our digital personas. In 2014 we’ll see an influx of platforms catering to a digital experience grounded in anonymity. The rise of “The Snapchats” is going mainstream. The Innovators: Snapchat, Wickr, Heml, Gryphn Thursday, January 9, 14
DRONES. EVERYWHERE. AND RAPIDLY EVOLVING. Autonomous, miniature flying machines are nothing new. But they are more common than ever before. Soon, advancements in drone technology will make the sky a place ripe for innovation, leading to a proliferation of airborne applications. The design implications are huge, from the drones themselves down to the ecosystems that support them. BY ADAM PRUDEN, ERIC BOAM, AND CARLOS ELENA-LENZ The Innovators: 3D Robotics, Spiri Thursday, January 9, 14
DISCONNECTING IN THE MODERN, DIGITAL WORLD BY TIMOTHY MOREY You will step into a library and disconnect. The theater will hush and your GPS will shut off. The dark zone in your home will allow you to sink into a chair, web-free, and muse. Faraday Zones, as frog strategist Timothy Morey calls them, will become a ubiquity in 2014. From these dodgy origins, they will find mainstream acceptance on trains, planes, and automobiles, as well as certain public spaces such as libraries and cinemas. Back-to-nature resorts and vacation spots will pile on, offering the opportunity to be “beyond reach.” The Innovators: Camp Grounded Thursday, January 9, 14
RISE OF THE CHINESE INTERNET GIANTS BY STEVE BOSWELL In 2014, the world will discover WeChat. With its user base of 300 million and an innovative offering, including instant messaging, group chat, content sharing, payments, and e-commerce, WeChat has evolved from a messaging application to a truly integrated mobile Internet platform. Not only will they unseat Facebook, WeChat will also disrupt the enterprise communications, financial services, and retail industries on a large scale. The Innovators: Tencent Thursday, January 9, 14
MIND CONTROL! BY KENJI HUANG If someone from the 1500’s came to us now and looked at what technology has enabled us to do, they’d think we were superhuman. In 2014, we’ll make even greater advancements. Our ability to control objects with our minds will be within reach as more companies look toward experiences that directly harness electrical signals from our brain. The Innovators: EPOC, Melon Thursday, January 9, 14
AUGMENTED REALITY BY ANTONIO DEPASQUALE Technology has always helped us solve problems and extend our potential. Until now our technological tools were external add-ons, largely separate from our bodies. Today they are evolving on a new path integrating with our physiology; we are “hacking” the human body and the senses. Wearable technology, such as Google Glass, is an example of the first generation of consumer products that is changing the way we think about technology extending our potential. But it’s only the beginning: system-powered exoskeletons, and bionic arms, feet, and eyes, are the next phase. The Innovators: BioM, Touchbionics, Honda Thursday, January 9, 14
SELFDRIVING CARS BY JARED FICKLIN Our cars will tuck themselves into a driveway or garage with precision, leading to the convenience of being able to begin the ritual exit of the vehicle—gathering belongings, checking smartphones, looking for sunglasses—early. Self-driving cars are on the horizon in 2014, with practical elements like self-parking paving the way. The Innovators: Ford Thursday, January 9, 14
THE INTERNET OF THINGS GOES ART SCHOOL BY ROBERT TUTTLE Thursday, January 9, 14 Everything around us is getting smarter. As the Internet of Things becomes ubiquitous, smart technology will move beyond “practical” uses (medical, fitness, security, etc.) and into more subjective, artistic scenarios. Riding the wave of connecting sensors, devices, and people, digitally augmenting live music performances will enhance the audience experience and deliver more entertainment value. The Innovators: ITP at Tisch School of the Arts
DATA, RICH AND FULL OF VALUE BY PATRICK KALAHER The technology we use creates an abundance of data. That “digital exhaust” can take myriad forms, from descriptive data to data about product use and compatibility. In 2014, the quality and richness of this data will be the most refined and top-notch it has ever been. The Innovators: Etilize, Icecat Thursday, January 9, 14
THE REINTERPRETATION OF CRAFT BY MARK WHEEDON Thursday, January 9, 14 At a time when every new piece of tech or service seems to be an app or digital entity, we’re craving the tangible. Nike is a leader in reviving craft and skill, by combining advanced materials and 3D printing. Next year will fundamentally change the way we think of mass-produced objects, with the rise of emotionally driven customizations and stylized “imperfections.” The Innovators: Nike
BUCKING THE PRICE NORM BY CORMAC EUBANKS For years it was a common industry belief that very few people would shell out more than $100 for a pair of headphones. Then Beats by Dre dropped in and recalibrated an industry. They showed the world that people were willing to pay for a premium design and bass heavy sound all wrapped in an outstanding aspirational brand. Industries are waking up to the fact that people are eager to purchase products at prices never before considered, provided those products deliver excellent design and user experience. Good design involves envisioning a product and user experience from the ground up. For disruptive companies that can do that effectively, the sky’s the limit. The Innovators: Apple Thursday, January 9, 14
THE UBERFICATION OF SERVICES BY MICHAEL ROBERTSON Thursday, January 9, 14 San Francisco startup Uber has led the revolution of personal transportation: Click to order, and minutes later your personal, quality-checked driver arrives, with the payment taken care of behind the scenes. 2014 will see this “on-demand” model extend across other personal services, from home maintenance to dog walking. Appliance repair person? Your device says they’re only three minutes away. The Innovators: ClubLocal, HandyBook
THE CONSUMER WILL OWN DATA BY ANNIE HSU With companies like Google, Facebook, and Twitter making billions of dollars from what is essentially aggregated and analyzed user data, there will be a counter-movement of user-controlled data ownership (and even user-controlled data monetization) growing stronger over time. To quote a colleague here, ‘‘If you’re not paying for it, you’re not the customer—you’re the product being sold.” 2014 will be the year of data reclamation! The Innovators: Personal.com Thursday, January 9, 14
QUANTIFIED SELF AT THE OFFICE BY CLINT RULE Thursday, January 9, 14 How long you slept and how fast you ran won’t be the only quantified elements of your life. Quantifying your time at work will become the norm: How, when, and where you spend your time at work will be automatically captured and translated into timesheets, project management software, and analytics dashboards. Expect debates about privacy rights and coercive versus caring uses of the technology. The Innovators: Peak
REINVENTION OF PC AS PRODUCTIVITY TOOL BY TJEERD HOEK Device manufacturers are primarily focusing their innovation on the high-volume mobile device market and the booming sales numbers of smartphones and tablets. But these consumption/ communication-optimized devices aren’t a good replacement of the PC when it comes to creation and productivity tasks. And yet no one is investing in its future. A reinvigorated interest in computing tools to make things will be news in 2014. The Innovators: Apple Thursday, January 9, 14
FOR INQUIRIES, CONTACT firstname.lastname@example.org www.frogdesign.com frog is a global product strategy and design firm. We identify business opportunities, create great products, and design meaningful experiences to grow brands and delight customers. We are more than 600 strategists, researchers, designers, and technologists who consult and partner with clients across industries. Headquartered in San Francisco, we have offices in Amsterdam, Austin, Boston, Milan, Munich, New York, Seattle, and Shanghai. AMSTERDAM Van Diemenstraat 200 1013 CP Amsterdam The Netherlands Tel. +31 20 520 3600 MILAN Via Ugo Bassi, 21 20159 Milan Italy Tel. +39 02 898 25900 SAN FRANCISCO 660 3rd Street, 4th Floor San Francisco, California 94107 United States Tel. +1 415 442 4804 AUSTIN 101 W. 6th Street, Suite 200 Austin, Texas 78701 United States Tel. +1 512 477 3764 MUNICH Leopoldstraße 55 80802, Munich Germany Tel. +49 (0)89 232397 0 SEATTLE 413 Pine Street, 2nd Floor Seattle, Washington 98101 United States Tel. +1 206 876 3900 BOSTON 1 Broadway, 14th Floor Cambridge, Massachusetts 02142 United States Tel. +1 212 965 9700 NEW YORK 325 Hudson Street, 7th Floor New York, New York 10013 United States Tel. +1 212 965 9700 SHANGHAI 3F building 6, No. 800 Changde Road Shanghai 200040 China Tel. +86 21 6157 7188 18 Thursday, January 9, 14
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