Top predictions for IT organisations and users for 2014 and beyond – Part 1

closeThis article could be out of date, as it was published 11 months 17 days ago.

Gartner has revealed its top predictions for IT organisations and IT users for 2014 and beyond.

Combining several disruptive topics – Digital Industrial Revolution, Digital Business, Smart Machines and the Internet of Things – the analyst firm believes these are set to have an impact well beyond just the IT function.

“Gartner’s 2013 CEO survey suggests CEOs feel that business uncertainties are declining and yet, CIOs awake each day into a world of technology uncertainty and change,” says Daryl Plummer, managing vice president and analyst, Gartner.

“The savvy CIO will get his or her CEO to recognise the change being brought about by disruptive shifts is coming at an accelerated pace and at a global level of impact.”

Presenting their findings during Gartner Symposium/ITxpo, Gartner’s top 10 predictions are broken out into four categories and include:

Digital Industrial Revolution

IT is no longer just about the IT function. Instead, IT has become the catalyst for the next phase of innovation in personal and competitive business ecosystems.

One place where this is evident is in the beginnings of a Digital Industrial Revolution that threatens to reshape how physical goods are created using 3D printing.

By 2018, 3D printing will result in the loss of at least $100 billion per year in intellectual property globally. Near Term Flag:

At least one major western manufacturer will claim to have had intellectual property (IP) stolen for a mainstream product by thieves using 3D printers who will likely reside in those same western markets rather than in Asia by 2015.

The plummeting costs of 3D printers, scanners and 3D modeling technology, combined with improving capabilities, makes the technology for IP theft more accessible to would-be criminals

Importantly, 3D printers do not have to produce a finished good in order to enable IP theft.

The ability to make a wax mold from a scanned object, for instance, can enable the thief to produce large quantities of items that exactly replicate the original.

By 2016, 3D printing of tissues and organs (bioprinting) will cause a global debate about regulating the technology or banning it for both human and nonhuman use. Near Term Flag:

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration or comparable agency in a developed nation that is charged with evaluating all medical proposals will introduce guidelines that prohibit the bioprinting of life-saving 3D printed organs and tissues without its prior approval by end of 2015.

Bioprinting is the medical application of 3D printers to produce living tissue and organs. The day when 3D bioprinted human organs are readily available is drawing closer.
The emergence of 3D bioprinting facilities with the ability to print human organs can leave people wondering what the effect of it will be on society.

Beyond these questions, however, there is the reality of what 3D bioprinting means in helping people who need organs that are otherwise not readily available.

Digital Business

Digital business refers to business created using digital assets and/or capabilities, involving digital products, services and/or customer experiences, and/or conducted through digital channels and communities.

Gartner’s digital business predictions focus on the effect digital business will have on labor reductions, on consumer goods revenue, and on use of personal data. While these do not cover the sum total of digital business, they do highlight critical areas of medium to long-term impact.

By 2017, more than half of consumer goods manufacturers will receive 75 percent of their consumer innovation and R&D capabilities from crowdsourced solutions. Near Term Flag:

Consumer goods companies that employ crowdsourced solutions in marketing campaigns or new product development will enjoy a 1 percent revenue boost over noncrowdsourced competitors by 2015.

Engineers, scientists, IT professionals and marketers at consumer goods companies are engaging crowds much more aggressively and with increasing frequency using digital channels to reach a larger and more anonymous pool of intellect and opinion.

Gartner sees a massive shift toward applications of crowdsourcing, enabled by technology, such as: advertising, online communities, scientific problem solving, internal new product ideas, and consumer-created products.

By 2020, the labour reduction effect of digitisation will cause social unrest and a quest for new economic models in several mature economies. Near Term Flag:

A larger scale version of an “Occupy Wall Street”-type movement will begin by the end of 2014, indicating that social unrest will start to foster political debate.

Digitisation is reducing labour content of services and products in an unprecedented way, thus fundamentally changing the way remuneration is allocated across labor and capital.

Long term, this makes it impossible for increasingly large groups to participate in the traditional economic system — even at lower prices — leading them to look for alternatives such as a bartering-based (sub)society, urging a return to protectionism or resurrecting initiatives like Occupy Wall Street, but on a much larger scale.

Mature economies will suffer most as they don’t have the population growth to increase autonomous demand nor powerful enough labor unions or political parties to (re-)allocate gains in what continues to be a global economy.

By 2017, 80 percent of consumers will collect, track and barter their personal data for cost savings, convenience and customisation. Near Term Flag:

The number of Kickstarter-based auctions of personal data will increase by triple-digit percentages by the end of 2014.

The escalation of consumer awareness of data collection practices has set the stage for offering consumers more control over the disposition of personal data — collected both online and offline.

As increasing demand and scarcity drives up the value of such data, incentives grow to entice consumers to share it voluntarily. Meanwhile, consumer interest in self-tracking also suggests that consumers are investing more time and energy in collecting data about themselves.

They increasingly view such data as a key asset for life improvement, which is potentially consistent with the idea of trading it for value under the right circumstances.

By 2020, enterprises and governments will fail to protect 75 percent of sensitive data, and declassify and grant broad/public access to it. Near Term Flag:

By 2015, at least one more Snowden or WikiLeaks moment will occur, indicating an upward trend in corporations and governments’ acceptance that they cannot protect all sensitive information.

The amount of data stored and used by enterprises and governments is growing exponentially, such that any attempt to protect it all is unrealistic. Instead of facing an unfathomable task of protecting all data, enterprises and governments will focus on protecting only a small part of it, but protecting it well.

Wider society will also gain from this approach, enabling it to establish better control over government and business, preventing abuses of power and engendering greater trust.

For the second part of Gartner’s predictions, check back to www.techday.com tomorrow morning at 8:30am.

Do you agree with Gartner’s forecast? Tell us your predictions in the comments below

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