Innovation Accelerators


The next phase of the Information Technology (IT) revolution is called the "3rd Platform", built on mobile devices, cloud services, social networks, and big data analytics. International Data Corporation (IDC) probably the top global provider of market intelligence for the IT market, has identified core technologies that they call "Innovation Accelerators". These technologies include Robotics, 3-D Printing, Natural Interfaces, the Internet of Things, Cognitive Systems, and Next Gen Security. These technologies will "radically expand' the capabilities and applications for the 3rd Platform.

The Core Technologies that IDC highlighted are:

Pervasive Robotics: robots that "leverage knowledge from the digital world and turn it into action in the physical world, through robots, self-driving cars, and drones". By 2020, IDC forecasts that 30 percent of new cars will have a self-driving mode. Many of the new models already have self-parking and accident avoidance* built in. Can you imagine how much safer those cars will be?

Natural Interfaces: these powerful interfaces connect people and 3rd Platform systems through speech, gestures, motion, and touch. Picture how real-time interfaces with doctors and translation services can transform the patient and customer experiences.

3D Printing provides the ability to make needed goods, onsite where they are required. The forecast: by the year 2020, 3D Printing technologies will deliver produce-on-demand arrangements for more than 10 percent of all consumer purchases.

The Internet of Things includes internet-connected cars and homes, wearables, and sensors. IDC forecasts that by 2020, consumers will interact with over 150 sensor-enabled devices daily---and that 25 percent of them will be disposable.

Cognitive Systems observe, learn, analyze, and offer suggestions. By 2020, IDC forecasts that 60 percent of these device interactions will be automatic, because we, as users, will accept information from intelligent systems and machine learning, just as wearers of the FitBit do today.

Next Generation Security Solutions are now better designed to keep up with expanding needs: By 2020, IDC forecasts that 70 percent of mobile users will access their mobile devices biometrically. The new iPhone 6 already has a biometric fingerprint reader built in

What Comes Next?

As Peter Diamandis talked about recently in his recap of the Abundance 360 Summit, there is a lot of money going into the Augmented Reality, Artificial Reality, and Virtual Reality fields. Not too long ago Google put $550 Million USD into Magic Leap, a company that blends the real and virtual worlds in a way that is seamless. If you want to see what we are talking about, check out the Microsoft's video about its adjunct to Windows 10 called Hololens. ( Be prepared to be blown away!

Special thanks to both IDC Executive Vice President, Crawford Del Prete for his informative video and to serial entrepreneur Peter Diamandis for his groundbreaking information.

* The cars stop themselves before the driver would have hit something.


From "The Herman Trend Alert," by Joyce Gioia, Strategic Business Futurist.


Joyce Gioia is a Strategic Business Futurist concentrating on workforce and workplace trends. Joyce is President and CEO of The Herman Group, a firm serving a wide range corporate, trade association and governmental clients on an international basis.

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