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Future Trends

  • Smart machines = smart business

    Technology has changed the way customers engage with retailers and the days of simply adding an online site to an existing bricks and mortar business are long gone. Today’s consumers expect an instant response and use a multitude of channels to search and interact with retailers, from the internet and mobile applications to digital TV, social media and online gaming. By doing so they are revealing an increasing amount of information about themselves and their shopping habits. With the shopper’s consent retailers are using cloud and big data technologies to collect, store and analyse some of this information, but...

  • IT in 2016: it’s all about digital transformation and IoT

    With 2016 in full swing, it’s never been more important for the IT industry to evolve in order to remain relevant. From an increasing shift to the cloud and third platform technologies, to the development of the Internet of Things (IoT), the International Data Corporation’s (IDC) Worldwide IT Industry 2016 Predictions centre on digital transformation. In South Africa, while we are certainly seeing similar trends, we still need to address the skills and awareness necessary for us to excel. Digital transformation at the heart of corporate strategy According to the IDC, by the end of 2017, the majority of...

  • Smart cities for sustainable, sharable energy

    Smartphones have transformed how we engage with almost every aspect of our daily lives. Now the outward progression of this technology – the so-called “Internet of Things” – has begun to encapsulate even more of our everyday interactions. Today entire cities are striving to perform in a way that harnesses the benefits of “Big Data” and digital technologies, promising residents a more eco-efficient and sustainable standard of living. Digital communication tools are being used to around the world to better improve municipal services and enhance the capabilities of basic city infrastructure. By bringing formerly analog services and devices online,...

  • The latest addition to the ‘C Suite’? That would be the Chief Data Officer

    Companies today are in a race to drive competitive advantage and improved efficiency through better use and understanding of data. That makes sense. We live in the era of the Zettabyte, with the devices we carry around with us producing reams and reams of data. Someone has to make sense of it. Enter the Chief Data Officer (CDO) According to technology research house Gartner, there's been a sharp spike in companies with chief data officers (CDOs) over the past few years. So sharp has the rise been that Gartner predicts that 90% of large companies will have a CDO...

  • 2016: the year of multimedia convergence

    It’s about that time of the year where digital marketing experts and industry leaders pen their thoughts on what we can expect over the course of 2016. Granted, the end of 2015 saw our screens layered with tab after tab of blogs and articles, all opened in the hopes that we’d catch onto the trends before we rang in the New Year. What we didn’t account for were the ideas and statistics that have only come to light within the first month of 2016 and so, we’ve seen a number of new predications, new ideas and new concepts...

  • Customer-centricity and DIY : how tech will shape the life insurance market in 2016

    South Africa’s life insurance market is performing well by global standards, with healthy premium growth, new business and return on equity in recent years. But our environment is changing as digital technologies transform the landscape, as new regulations come into effect and as customers begin to seek more value from their life insurers. Here are a few of the trends that will shape life insurance in South Africa this year: 1. New technology enables more customer-centricity Thanks to big data and the power of the cloud, life insurers are today able to gain a more complete view of their customers and use...

  • Gartner: government more likely to embrace cloud for security reasons than convenience

    Governments are moving the cloud faster than ever but, according to Gartner, they're not doing so for the sake of convenience, cost saving, or agility. Instead, the technology research house says, increased security will displace cost savings and agility as the primary driver for government agencies to move to public cloud within their jurisdictions. "Many cloud service providers, such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft and Google, invest heavily in incorporating higher levels of security into their products to continue building confidence that their data is more secure," said Neville Cannon, research director at Gartner. "Many of these providers can invest...

  • 10 reasons why now is the right time to upgrade to SSD

    Your computer has a new choke point that can be easily remedied with a single hardware upgrade. At one time computers were slowed by weak processors or dial-up Internet connections. Now that multi-core CPU’s and broadband access are ubiquitous, the rate-limiting step is your spinning mechanical hard drive. Booting up your computer is a normal expected inconvenience…two to three minutes of idle time wasted as you stare at the hour glass icon while your computer diligently reloads the operating system and programs from the hard drive to system memory. Hard drive maintenance (defragging, error checking, and virus scans)...

  • Enabling every light bulb to transmit data: get ready for Li-Fi

    In the near future, you can expect to sit or stand under a light bulb and use wireless internet through the light of that bulb only. The revolutionary technology that has become the talk of the internet town these days is known as Li-Fi which enables data transmission through visible light communication. Li-Fi (light fidelity) is a high speed wireless communication technology similar to that of Wi-Fi that was coined by Professor Harald Haas as a replacement of data transmission technologies. Haas first experimented the successful transmission of data through a single LED back in 2011 at the University...

  • 2016: the year of technology for the people

    It’s that time again – when we look back at the year that has passed and throw our predictions into the ring for what lies ahead. If anything was clear in 2015, it’s that advancements in technology showed no signs of slowing down. Apple Pay launched in the UK, smart watches took off and 3D printers were made affordable for the average consumer to use – to name just a few innovations. But one of the most common events to hit the news headlines in 2015 was data breaches and hacks across various industries, such as the Ashley Madison...

  • 9 technology and finance predictions for 2016

    Thinking machines, real-time video, saying goodbye to your local video store, and everything goes bionic, these are just some of the trends for 2016 identified by Oresti Patricios, founder and CEO of brand intelligence company Ornico. Global economic outlook for 2016 Growth in the global economy is expected to be similar to that of 2015. This is according to the International Monetary Fund's World Economic Outlook which says that both developed and developing economies will fare pretty much the same as they did the year before. But there's a big warning for commodities which will grow at a rate 30% lower than...

  • 5 tech trends that’ll make doing business easier in 2016

    Technology and software is becoming integrated into every aspect of our personal and business lives and every year this integration gets deeper and deeper. Given the pervasiveness of technology in our lives it is hard to cover all the trends that are impacting us but in this article I will focus on a few we are seeing have an immediate effect on our customers around the world and what we can expect to see in the coming year. These trends are focused on simplification and how it is becoming easier for businesses to build highly effective applications that are...

  • 3 big predictions for mobile money, FinTech and financial inclusion in 2016

    As with so many things in human history, the evolution of money has been characterised by slow and steady progress, interspersed with periods of rapid technological advancement. Even so, we live an age of unprecedented change when it comes to both money and the financial sector as a whole. You only have to look at the strides being made in financial inclusion, fintech, and mobile-to-mobile payments to see that. Here are three big predictions for each of those fields in 2016. 1. Financial inclusion will mean big business Making serious money and reaching the unbanked have not always...

  • The value of Oxygen-oriented technology? At least $467m

    Pulse oximetry uses non-invasive photon technology to measure the redness of human blood. Oxygen saturation is essential when monitoring hospitalized patients and is now being used by extreme athletes to maximize physical performance. The reactivity of oxygen drives the main energy generation system of the human body. The inventors of this technology (Masimo Corporation) recently won a landmark US $467 million dollar patent infringement lawsuit. Mitochondria are masters of oxygen. In the presence of oxygen, they generate the adenosine triphosphate energy (ATP) that powers our muscles and vital organs. Mitochondria are the oxygen-consuming high-efficiency furnaces (inside each of your...

  • ‘Come with me, if you want to live’: why blue chips need AI

    Artificial intelligence is a complex subject that conjures complex emotions. A good barometer for the public’s sentiment on AI is Hollywood, which can’t decide if AI is a menacing force, like the enslaving technology in The Matrix or a benevolent one, like C-3PO and R2-D2 in Star Wars or, more recently, Kevin Spacey’s soulful android Gerty in the little-seen 2009 film Moon. Actually, AI is neutral. Like other technologies, it’s merely a tool that reflects the intentions of the user. Ambivalence about the topic may have clouded its utility, though. For blue chip companies today, it’s the tool that will...