So how’d my 2016 predictions do? / Perth 6PR

Every year I put out a list of what I think the major tech issues and gadgets are likely to be for the year ahead and this week 6PR’s Chrissy Morrissy took me through last years list to see how we’ve progressed, what’s come about and what hasn’t.

My 3 main thoughts on the tech we’d see in 2016 were:

Augmented (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) are set to boom in the first half of next year with all major manufacturers promising new VR products and most under $US400. This may take a while to show its true potential, but it is definitely a new frontier that’s here to stay.

Ambient technology and device consolidation will start its journey next year, as technology becomes as ordinary as electricity and gas, and becomes more about what it can do for me rather than the fact it exists. In this same thought devices will begin to become agnostic with users switching often from one to the other, making choices based on situation and purpose, rather than on wow factor.

Personal Assistants, in the form of robots, that listen to you and talk back will begin their journey to purpose next year with releases like Jibo hitting our retail stores for around the $US2,000 mark. These in the early stages will read emails and texts, announce callers and generally  interact with us, they are not yet the robots of our science fiction dreams, but they are the first line in an evolution that may one day bring us the robot butler, we supposedly can’t live without.

Happy to say I got 3 for 3 they’re all on the scene, all in various stages of usefulness and all still largely untapped.

Listen in as we discuss where each of these and my other predictions are at and how and where they’re being used already as well as a look ahead at what we can expect to see, have and do in 2017 (24 mins 51 seconds)


 

#CES2016 – the 6 trends that will dominate the year ahead ( #2016trends ) / Austereo, ABC Local, ABC Far North

_DSC0661 CES (Consumer Electronic Show) 2016, Nerdvana, has ended for another year and Las Vegas has said goodbye to 170,000 visitors and 3,631 exhibitors all itching to get a glimpse of the year ahead in tech gadgets and retail offerings and also looking for the dots to connect to figure out what’s lies further ahead.

There were a number of clear categories this year and in this weeks regular ABC and Austereo radio segments I explored some of these and also what may be next and after next.

The overriding theme for me this year was that we have crossed over the threshold away from having and owning to using and doing.

This new ambient state of being assumes technology exists and is readily available, just like electricity, gas and water, which means we no longer get as excited about the form factor of it anymore and instead it’s all about the experience – what can it do to make my life more interesting, easier or better.

So here are my top 6 CES trends and what they mean to you…

1. Cars of the Future – this display has gone from a garage sized hall a few years ago, to a mega display that brings many of the existing automotive players to town and even more interestingly the “wannabees’ like Apple and Google as well. No surprise cars are going autonomous eventually, but on the road to autonomy will be a whole heap of interesting incremental changes including electric cars, cars that park themselves, everything connected cars including Apple Car Play and Android Auto and every third-party provider of new shiny auto industry toys.

Get set for the biggest revolution in cars since we first saw them on our roads just over 100 years ago.

2. Virtual Reality – this year marks the beginning of this new retail category and is definitely 2016’s Christmas stocking stuffer. Manufacturers including Samsung, Sony, Occulus Rift and others have brand new shiny headsets being released in the first half of this year, with pricing ranging from $30 – $600.These digital magical carpets will allow you temporarily escape the physical world and enter a “world of pure imagination”. For the first time you’ll be able to experience the internet, touch knowledge and feel facts as your mind and a headset takes you anywhere to experience anything without your body ever leaving home.

As great as Virtual Reality is Augmented Reality will eventually be the bigger industry and dominant technology, because long-term we don’t really want to walk around in a completely artificial digital world with the real world hidden away, what we want is for both the real and virtual worlds to co-exist.

3. Drones – last year seemed to be dominated by them, but wait there’s more. We’ll be droning about drones for at least another year as the CES goes wild for drones with ever conceivable and even some far-fetched drone uses including a manned drone available from Ehang capable of taking a single person up between 350 metres and 3 kilometres for a flight length of 23 minutes, but before you get too excited you’ll need 2 things, first $250,000 and second to get a government authority anywhere on earth to let you fly it.

This year we’ll see and hear lots of companies like Australia Post, Amazon, Pizza Hut and others trialing this delivery tech and eventually one of them might make it work, but there’s still a tonne of government regulation to get through and business models to prove.

4. Video Streaming – one of the larger breakout sections this year was video streaming pushed along by Netflix’s announcement to extend their services to 170 additional countries. This year we’ll see You Tube try to step up to the commercial video streaming plate, as well as see new tech including 4K and 360 degree videos and virtual reality.

Behind all of this is the forever fracturing of free to air and centralised content distribution.

It is now about whatever, whenever and on whichever device, as the tower of Babel falls and the world becomes a universal always-on TV set pulling content from everywhere and making it available to evrybody.

5. Smart Homes – The world of science fiction is fast becoming science fact as the world of objects steadily connect themselves to the internet and Internet of Things appliances abound. Samsung announced their new smart fridge and it seems every other stand boasted about its tech’s ability to remotely and intuitively turn things on and off and open and shut for you.

Give it a few years and this tech will seem as ordinary as social media is today.

6. Personal Robots – I’ve been waiting for this one since I read my first sci-fi novel, watched the Jestons and saw my first Star Trek episode, we may not yet be at the human looking android robot stage yet, but this year we will see the first retail available set of personal robots ranging from those that do not move at all but do speak and interact with you, to those that have some moving parts, to those that zip around your home.

This is early days for this industry sector and it is not so much this years offerings that excite me, but the possibilities of what the next few generations of robots might be and do.

As always lots more to talk about and in these on air radio segments I cover the CES in more detail, so have a listen now..

Phil Staley – ABC Far North – 18 Jan 2016 – (17 minutes  55 seconds)

Glynn Greensmith – ABC Local – It’s Just Not Cricket – 16 Jan 2016 – (17 minutes 0 seconds)

Anthony Tilli – Southern Cross Austereo – 11 Jan 2016 – (6 minutes  16 seconds)

Happy 2016 / 6PR, ABC Canberra

h2016 Australian elections, Olympic games, leap year, personal robots, drones, artificial intelligence, toasters talking to fridges, cars that drive themselves, and so much more are going to be a part of a 2016 and on this first morning of this brand new year I caught up with 6PR Perth and ABC Canberra’s breakfast shows to chat all things new, shiny and different.

Click here for my 2016 predictions, have a listen to these two segments and then share your predictions for 2016.

ABC Canberra – 1st January 2016 (13 minutes 52 seconds)

6PR Perth – 1st January 2016 (10 minutes 51 seconds)

What you already need to know about 2016 / ABC Local Nightlife

Nightlife_28_Dec_15_2016_trends This time of year is always a great time to take stock of what we have achieved in 2015 and what we may get up to, have and want in 2016, and tonight in my regular on air Nightlife radio segment Jennifer Fleming of ABC local and I did just that.

2015 had a lot of firsts, ranging from incredible pictures of Pluto, Tesla’s car software upgrades, Jeff Bazos and Elon Musk both successfully landing space crafts back on earth and windows 10 sedate launch are just some of my highlights, others include a machine that turns human waste into drinking water and sneaker technology designed specifically for people.

2016 was where we headed next with a look at the technology horizon and the rise and rise (pun intended) of drones and their various uses; driverless cars; personal robots (or personal assistants) like Jibo, Pepper, and Furo that are set to come to a home near you in 2016, the collaborative or sharing economy including Uber, airbnb and others and Artificial Intelligence becoming more common with apps and devices predicting what you may want to know and providing it to you on your mobiles and other tech ahead of you asking for it, or even thinking about it.

We also turned our attention to food trends including foraging which is the search for ultra local edible weeds, plants and produce, shared tables, glocal and others.

We were joined on-line by numerous listeners including: John who wanted to know if driverless cars could be used by the visually impaired – answer not yet and most probably not until 2030, but definitely in the mid future horizon; Johnathan who was looking for cattle mustering drones (and if you’re interested in them drop me an email to morris@businessfuturist.com and I’ll send you some links); Laury who rightly corrected us and asked us to use the term quadcopter instead of drones and Dan who wanted to know what fueled drones and kept them in the sky and on track.

A really good chat, great callers and a terrific subject, well worth a listen (41 minutes 24 seconds) and then I’d love to hear your predictions for 2016.