10 Technologies that will Disrupt Businesses in 2022
As any modern businessman would tell you, you’ll need to be updated with not just how much your business has changed but how much more it can change in the coming years. Preparedness is key in today’s business environment, that’s why we collated 10 technologies that we believe will disrupt businesses in 2022.
5G has been a hot topic for telecommunications for a while now. Currently undergoing a roll-out since late 2019, 5G has the potential to increase the possibilities of wireless services when fully launched. Compared to 4G, which most of the world is currently connected to, 5G has speeds and bandwidths that can allow for as much as 10 gigabytes per second for mobile devices.
Not only does this mean users have access to their media and entertainment faster, but companies are also able to transmit and receive larger packets of data regardless of location. This can mean greater support for B2B systems as well as more robust communication across systems.
In a world where smart devices are being used everywhere from consumer electronics to institutional systems, the ability to transmit larger amounts of data faster can mean all the difference.
These recent years have shown the dependence of the modern world on a small silicon chip, no larger than the head of a needle. The recent shortage in semiconductors just proves the point that our world has increasingly been reliant on smart devices as well as the little chips that keep them running.
This goes beyond mobile phone shortages as semiconductor reliance has been seen in almost every facet of technology that needs some form of electricity to operate. This means that automotive, broadcasting systems, industrial manufacturing technologies, and even aerospace designs can face delayed development and release until the industry can catch up with the demand.
Though even this catch-up is placed under scrutiny as there are little to no signs that our demand for smart devices will lessen in the near future. If anything, the steady growth of demand for newer and better technology has pushed industry giants to look for other sources for these precious materials.
Recently Apple, one of the largest tech companies in the world, had announced its move from outsourcing its popular M1 chipset to manufacturing it in-house with greener technologies. Beyond just a way to take back control of their production from outside market forces, this also sends a signal to other companies that there are better, more sustainable ways to continue using semiconductor technology. We will need to see how the rest of the big tech companies in the market react this coming 2022.
Smarter Devices & Smarter Systems (AI and Automation)
It’s no surprise that automation and artificial intelligence is at the forefront of most businesses in the modern world. The push for better and more efficient systems has been commonplace in the business environment for decades now, but recent developments in machine learning and AI have pushed the notion that certain software can now perform tasks once thought to need consistent human oversight.
From prototyping self-driving cars to automatic check-out systems within Amazon’s Go Grocery stores, there have been countless ways companies have used the smarter systems of today to better push for innovation in what was once thought to be out of reach. Moreover, the devices we carry and use in our daily lives have lent a new avenue for businesses to better understand their consumers through behavioral insights as well as the aggregation of relevant data to the business.
It only goes further from this point onward as recent developments in 5G technologies, better semiconductor developments, as well as more robust neural networks have allowed machines to better understand and develop new insights regarding received inputs without direct intervention from humans. To what extent this would be affecting current businesses would vary greatly, but it is definitely an aspect of business innovation that should not be ignored.
The prospect of AI and machine learning brings about a ton of potential benefits to businesses that need additional assistance in creating better margins as well as more efficient solutions. But business owners and major stakeholders should keep in mind that these systems are still only as robust as those that developed them. Responsible business leaders in the industry ought to ensure that smarter devices that can collect enormous amounts of data are coupled with smart systems that responsibly put these data to good use.
Work From Home Revolution
This recent COVID-19 pandemic has caused many work environments to rethink how they go about going to work in an extremely difficult time. When most of the world went into lockdown, the fastest companies to transition their work to remote set-ups were able to flourish and reap the rewards of a new opportunity base of consumers who suddenly couldn’t leave the house.
More than just pure transactional businesses, this remote working situation has affected how individuals interact with businesses as well as each other. There have been countless “virtual” events now that attempt to recreate the social interactions barred by government mandate, as well as online analogs for aspects of daily life that just can’t be skipped. This means that schools, hospitals, business conferences, and so many more industries have had to adapt their operations to a remote setting (some with more success than others).
What did the world learn from all these remote opportunities? A pretty large constituent of workers has all acknowledged some key aspects of physical working spaces but also agreed that the option to do work from home has massive benefits in terms of time-saving and general work flexibility. The common saying, “can’t put the genie back in the bottle”, applies greatly in this situation. Once you show your workforce that office life was anything but necessary to get actual work done, it will be hard to convince them to come back into their standard nine to five desk lives.
Technology has caught wind of these sentiments as well, with Zoom and Microsoft Teams being one of the biggest winners in terms of gaining users throughout this pandemic. The sudden development of all these different robust systems of communication has opened the gates to what can be possible in a post-pandemic world. In fact, Facebook’s recent shift towards their Meta strategy is one of the largest bets on how users will soon integrate their digital worlds within their own reality. How this plays out in 2022 is anyone’s guess, but it nevertheless is an important aspect of future technologies and their effects on businesses moving forward.
The Cambridge Analytica scandal several years ago was proof enough that some tech companies took too many liberties with the data that was collected from their users. After all, these users readily agreed to the terms and conditions for using their service so tech companies believed they can do what they want with the data they provided.
The current regulation ruling is not looking too pleased with how tech companies are managing themselves in the current internet-driven age, with the EU already requiring many software service providers to clearly explain in layman terms the various uses their data will be collected for in order to teach the average user what really entails the usage of their software.
The current debate is still going strong between the tech giants and the regulatory bodies that want to police them. Too much regulation stiffens the ability for businesses to continue giving their products away for “free”, while too little regulation can easily cause another scandal similar to Cambridge Analytica to happen all over again. 2022 and the years to follow will dictate how data will be used in the future.
Technology Literate Workforce
The move to online working has also given rise to a more technologically literate workforce. While management of key institutional systems has usually been managed by experts who’ve worked in the field of information systems for years now, the current digital age demands most workers across different industries be aware of how technology can impact the business.
CRM and Inventory management systems like SalesForce and SAP have started seeing these developments and have begun training their clients on using and managing the different systems that each of their businesses uses. 2022 will see more shifts towards developing more complex technologies for better business management to be used by new hires and workers, shifting the balance of expertise towards those who can develop and manage these systems the fastest.
Decentralization of Systems
Speaking of systems, a tangent system that has been in development for years now and shows no signs of slowing down is the blockchain and its system of decentralized ledger keeping. Moving past the years of data management through a single accessible database, these decentralized systems work with nodes instead to create a more robust and tamperproof network of data entries.
This means that you’ll need less power and storage space to properly manage a set of key data all while enjoying the security of a system that works independently from each node in the network. This goes beyond the current application we see today in 2021 through its proliferation in cryptocurrency but to more industries adopting blockchain technologies coming in 2022 and beyond. From financial services to industrial processes, a decentralized network’s potential is only limited by that which makes use of it.
The Future of the Cloud
The problem with running all these new technologies is that it takes a toll on the hardware you’ll be running it on. Physics is still a clear component of any technology, and the more processing power you’ll need to run more robust systems will cause more heat to be generated, ultimately limiting the ability of your computer towards the hardware it runs out.
This is exactly why Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure have been so popular in recent years and show great promise for a more robust set of service models in the coming year 2022. The ability to run and store your applications and their respective data on a platform that you don’t have to will save you on costs as well as time in terms of developing and managing your own servers.
Though these technologies have been around for some time now, 2022 will start showing more players enter the game, as well as current cloud player, Microsoft Azure, gaining more ground on current king AWS through its procurement of a multi-billion-dollar contract with the United States Department of Defense. The future of businesses lies on the cloud, so those working towards building new innovative businesses would do well to keep an eye on developments here.
As a Service Business Models
As you might have put together in the entry above, the proliferation of cloud services is only a small part of the general movement towards a service model as a new and more sustainable way to conduct business. Indeed, some of the most popular companies now like Netflix and Uber are essentially service platforms, connecting users to a specific product through a platform they have (though Netflix has been a force of its own when it comes to producing original content).
2022 will definitely show more companies leaning towards technologies as a service for their new line of products. Apple’s focus on their subscription services, as well as their push for a more circular manufacturing schedule all, point to a renewed focus on how best to get their users familiar with Apple as a service provider rather than a pure tech manufacturer.
Newer business models will begin to arise as technology continues to develop, and the proliferation of stronger wireless networks will definitely be key in the development of new business practices in the future.
Business and ESG Focus
Recent developments in technologies and consumer behavior have shown that there ought to be a balance between profits and the many stakeholders to the company, including the environment and the public at large. This meant that many companies have started to shift their bottom line towards a triple-bottom-line strategy, known as people, planet, and profit.
This was useful in the years leading up to 2022 but has since experienced a larger movement in the form of ESGs (environment, social, and governance) and the activist investors behind them. More and more institutional bodies have come up with commitments towards keeping companies responsible for the resources they use to generate profit, and for good reason too. With the advancement in many technologies today, it makes more sense to invest in a company that’s actively innovating as part of its business plan towards a more sustainable future. After all, a business that plans towards being around for several more decades needs to have a methodology to arrive at that point.
Nike has begun this process a few years ago with their revolutionary recycled material technologies incorporated into many of their designs, from recycled polyester to reused foam for new sneaker releases. Yet this remains only a small part of technology’s role in the push for better ESG initiatives. Technology development will play a large part in making companies more efficient and more sustainable in 2022, and those businesses that start on this phenomenon early will reap the rewards.