This is one of a series of prediction posts for 2014 by our team members.
It seems like every year brings new advances and shifts in technology, some of which we’d never expect. Mobile devices and tablets have seen a huge surge in their market over the last few years, and we’ve seen an ever-growing expansion of social media as well. I think we’ll be imagining content in a different way by the end of 2014.
Using devices in new ways
There’s always a buzz about the next big device market. A few years ago, everyone started to talk about how tablets could change how we consume content. Lately the speculation has been about how we might use glasses, watches, or as Alan mentioned, televisions in new ways.
We talk a lot about responsive design, which lets you build a single site that adjusts its design based on what device you use to view it. In 2014 I believe we’ll really start to focus on moving beyond even responsive design to where we take a device’s strengths in mind. Maybe you’ll receive a custom notification on your phone if someone places an online order on your site. Maybe your watch will vibrate or beep if someone enters your store and you’re in the back room.
2014 may be the year where instead of thinking of the Internet as a bunch of HTML web pages and see it as the framework for new kinds of interaction and engagement.
Specialized social media
Facebook continues to be the social media king, but depending on who you believe, the site may be losing traction with younger users. Over the past couple of years we’ve seen growth in a number of social networks that specialize in one thing, such as Instagram and Pinterest. If Facebook users are worn out by Bitstrips, viral videos, and fake rumors, they may opt for networks where they can fine-tune who they choose as connections based on the type of content they want to see and share.
As the social pendulum swings back, there’s also a strong chance we’ll see services like Snapchat and Instagram Direct continue to rise in use. Controlling individual viewing seems to be a popular feature lately.
2014 promises to be an exciting year in tech. What do you think will be the hot tech gifts for the 2014 holiday season?