The new reality has brought the necessity of a more digitalized society. With the emerging of these technologies that haven’t been seen until now, remains the question: are they going to stay or will these tech trends from 2021 disappear?
Although lots of experts already predicting lots of advances in areas like ecommerce or IoT, the reality is that areas like health and education were not in short term plans of digitalization. But everything changed with the pandemics.
In a short time, we were able to see new ways of working or even of going to a doctor’s appointment. Tech trends that for sure would take much more time to be adopted if we had not felt the urge to do it.
According to Ericsson, here are the top tech trends from 2021, that will remain in our days:
1. Digital workplaces
Among the EU regions, Helsinki-Uusimaa, the capital region of Finland, recorded the highest share in 2020 (37%), followed at a distance by two Belgian regions: Province du Brabant wallon (27%) and the capital region, Région de Bruxelles-Capitale/Brussels Hoofdstedelijk Gewest (26%).”
This tech trend has emerged due to social distancing necessity however, companies and employees have seen the benefits of and hybrid model of working. According to Microsoft:
– 66% of leaders say their company is considering redesigning office space for hybrid work
– 73% of employees want flexible remote work options to stay
– 67% of employees want more in-person work or collaboration post-pandemic
With these statistics, we can see that this hybrid model definitely came to stay.
Although remote working several times being automatically linked to working at home, that’s not the real concept. Remote working means working from anywhere and employees want to have that type of experience.
In a study from Ericsson regarding dematerialized office where it discusses the internet of senses in the 2030 future workplace, in a universe of 8,400 surveyed white collar workers, half want a digital workstation allowing full-sense presence at work from anywhere.
2. Online learning
School was also affected by the digitalization, with over 1.6 billion children in 195 countries around the globe being sent home to have online classes, where some countries have achieved more than 41 weeks with schools closed, according to UNESCO.
Although education being a conservative area, virtual school started working quickly, despite the several challenges that must be overcome to keep this way of learning to work as it should and accessible to everyone. Some problems pointed out are:
– Difficulties to focus on studies online
– Technology inequalities and lack of access to the internet
– Fair online examinations
Healthcare is another very conservative industry, that usually resists to technologies. However, telehealth became one of the tech trends in 2021, due to the pandemics.
With hospitals crowded with COVID patients, the follow-up of patients in the traditional way became a challenge. Telehealth technologies had a crucial role in the new reality, keeping people safe and monitored in what comes to other health problems.
According to a Statista study in 2020, “54 percent of healthcare providers indicated they have mobile health (mHealth) services in use, while a further 24 percent of health providers have plans to use it in future. Additionally, 50 percent of healthcare providers surveyed used telehealth services for managing administrative meetings.”
4. Contactless convenience
As said before, tech trends related to technologies in ecommerce or IoT where already having some advances. With all these tech trends rising, it was an opportunity to put more effort into a more digitalized customer experience.
Besides the growth of European eCommerce that grew to 757 billion euros in 2020, in-shop digitalized experiences are also valued.
According to Ericsson “Contactless technology is defining the customer experience post-COVID, from touch-free payments and ‘just walk out’ shopping to biometric check-in for travel and accommodation.”
5. AI-generated content
AI is also becoming more powerful, in a way that we can’t even distinguish what’s fake or what’s real.
One of the things that was seen a lot related to AI are apps and filters used in social media, for example. Although this looking very simple capacities of AI, it shows a huge potential in the next years.
According to Statista, “European spending on artificial intelligence was over 7 billion U.S. dollars in 2019, and is forecast to almost triple in the next two years, increasing to over 21 billion in 2023.”
For this to happen, companies need to overcome some challenges, since one of the main problems for artificial intelligence adoption in Europe is that small and medium companies face challenges in AI implementation.