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2021 Tech Predictions: Technologies Of the New Normal

Cloud’s continuing reign

The presence of the cloud had already been well established and implemented in many organisations before the events of 2020.
The value was built on 
the provision of improvements to agility, scalability and cost-effectiveness. This value was seen across many different industries. With the pandemic outbreak, the cloud is providing resilience to many companies by making working habits less disruptive which has solidified the cloud’s essential position among organizations technology. 

In the coming 5 years, the cloud computing industry is predicted to expand from roughly $371bn in 2020 to approximately $832bn by 2025. In 2021 organizations will have to focus on the management of their cloud costs and unify their different cloud environments. Due to the increased competition cloud providers will have to focus on improving and integrating security, compliance and privacy into their offerings. The popularity of the cloud will also increase as the most ideal execution environment for new and groundbreaking tech such as AI, ML, blockchain and edge computing.

Intelligent networks: The new normal

The pandemic has forced businesses to innovate and react quickly and creatively to make changes to work patterns that were previously assumed to take years have been executed in a matter of just weeks. The “New Normal” will put more pressure on companies to adjust for increased network capabilities for supporting hybrid architectures. Though it was necessary for the new normal to take over, the outcome of this experience has been eye-opening. 

“Despite many preconceptions, remote working has largely been a success. Some 77% of remote workers say their productivity has increased this year which is great for employers. According to one study in the US, 75 per cent of those surveyed said they would like to continue to work from home in at least a partial capacity, while 40 per cent of respondents said they feel strongly that their employer should give employees the choice to opt-in to remote work” 


It could be predicted that more and more companies will start picking interest in intelligent and intent-based networks that provide integrated security. In addition, improving customer experience will join the increased digitization of businesses. The ability to offer platform stability, ease of use and personalization while maintaining human touch will become more imperative. The safety of customer and employee data is important and businesses that can ensure this safety will gain customer loyalty.

IoT playing a greater role in securing and analysing data

To align with the digital transformation of last year and increased online activity (due to lockdown),  there was a rapid increase in the amount of data that organizations had to deal with.2021 is predicted to have more 5G rollouts and also growth in LP-WAN-based services. The amount of data businesses deal with will only continue to spike. To be different from the competition, organisations will start focusing on data analytics technology which will help to securely handle and analyse information and derive greater insights from mostly unused operational data.

It is expected that the COVID-19 restrictions will be lifted by mid-2021 which will mean that hard-hit industries (e.g travel) will definitely start to see some rapid growth. On the other hand, the capability to provide enhanced experiences by better use of data will become a strong deciding factor for many customers. Therefore, IoT will play an imperative role in assisting with the automation of processes. As IoT meshes with AI and more embedded in organisational structures and transformation programmes, devices will become increasingly ‘smart’ and capable of driving greater intelligence.

A business imperative: Automation

COVID-19 had a major impact on investments in automated solutions in 2020 such as AI, ML and robotic process automation. During 2021 it is estimated that an increasing number of businesses will become platform-driven digital businesses with the rise in use of these technologies. The outcome will be automated routine, repetitive, manual tasks that are also predictable and will unlock great benefits.

Such innovations will build on and strengthen operational efficiency, increase the accuracy of platforms, and improve user experiences across ecosystems. Another benefit is that it will promote cost efficiencies and realignments by assisting organizations intelligently repurpose the savings in tactical innovations. The future is seeming to be very unpredictable and uncertain, but we can definitely expect businesses to gravitate towards solutions to make them more agile and resilient. 

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