By now, many New Year’s resolutioners have already given up on their pledges to get fit or quit smoking, but the good news is that tech innovators are not stopping on their intrepid journey to provide the public with better tools and devices. While the future is not set in stone, the advancement of tech is at such a predictable pace that you can expect to see the following technological revolutions in the coming year:
Blockchain is best described as the internet — but more secure. It is a digital ledger that prevent anyone from making any changes without recording who they are and what changes they made. The tech is already used to control cryptocurrency, and it will likely be expanded for more applications in 2019.
2. Dueling AI
One AI is good, but two is better. In 2019, researchers are expected to experiment more with dueling AI, which will pit AIs against one another to push their capabilities to the limit.
Automation has been featured on lists of tech trends for decades, but in 2019, the technology should continue to escalate. All sorts of processes, business- and consumer-centric, should be automated this year, especially considering the great strides taken in AI in 2018.
This year was the expected launch for more than a few autonomous cars, and we could see services like RideCell refine their platform offerings for autonomous fleets. While most car manufacturers have pushed back their driverless offerings for the consumer market, it’s more than likely that more robot cars will hit more roads.
5. 3D Metal Printing
3D printing has been around for so long that many consumer-model 3D printers are available — but these only produce plastic models. Fortunately, 3D metal printing is just around the corner, so soon everyone will be able to make their own metal creations real with a quick CTRL-P.
6. Real-world Cyber Attacks
As if cyber attacks weren’t scary enough, 2019 could bring a slew of new attacks that affect the physical world. Because the IoT is bigger and broader than ever before, cyber criminals can hack into devices that do things in the real world. There have already been a few cases of this here and there, but unless IoT developers close massive security holes, these attacks will spread in 2019.
7. Solar Power
The solar market is expected to explode in 2019 — let’s hope the sun itself doesn’t do the same. More people than ever are adding solar panels to their roofs, investing in solar-powered devices and otherwise looking to use the sun to the full advantage. It’s likely that new solar tools will emerge as the year progresses.
8. Smart Home
It’s safe to say that 2018 was the year of the smart home, with more smart tools and devices available than ever before. Still, 2019 promises to show us even more. Houses will get even smarter, providing totally customizable atmospheres for every inhabitant.
9. Smart City
Urban areas are becoming more connected, which makes them more capable of providing services that every citizen needs. For instance, in Hangzhou, thousands of cameras around city streets are collecting data to better control traffic lights, detect accidents and deploy respondents. Undoubtedly, other cities will follow this lead, and smart cities will emerge.
Since the Fitbit craze of the early 20-teens, the consumer interest in wearables has cooled considerably. However, experts believe wearables to heat up again in 2019 as gadget makers like Apple release sleeker, chicer options than ever before.
11. Folding Screens
Likely, the wearable craze will reignite as bendable screens hit the consumer market. Say goodbye to shattered screens; this new super-thin tech makes your mobile devices more lightweight and less prone to damage than ever before.
Admittedly, this is a huge tech sector, and it’s hard to detail each and every biotech advancement predicted for 2019. Suffice it to say that there’s a bunch of them.
13. Always-in Earbuds
AirPods are more than a meme; they are a phenomenon that is likely to change the landscape of mobile sound. It’s possible that our culture will begin to accept “always-in” earbuds, which means these devices will need to be more comfortable — and more fashionable — than previous iterations.
14. Games as Art
Thanks to platforms like Steam, indie game designers are getting more opportunities to showcase their alternative ideas — and they are catching the attention of more than your typical teenage boy gamer. Games are proving themselves ripe canvases for expression, and you’re likely to see even more avant-garde games emerge in 2019.
15. Fake Audio and Video
Adobe After Effects, FakeApp and other video and audio editing tools are making it easy for people to produce fake news. Now, you can make Barack Obama, Donald Trump Tom Hanks or even your own mother say and do whatever you want them to. This tech will be rife in 2019, which makes it even more important that you learn to sort reputable sources from disreputable ones.
16. Visual Data
Considering that everywhere you go, nearly everyone around you is collecting and analyzing your data, it makes sense that visual data will become more popular. Graphs, infographics and the like will be more plentiful and more data-rich than ever before.
These days, one cloud just isn’t enough. Many businesses have moved from cloud computing to hybrid cloud computing, and in 2019, they will shift again to the multi-cloud. Because different types of clouds confer different benefits, this is a smart way to optimize performance.
We jumped from 3G to 4G in the blink of an eye, but it’s taken years for tech geniuses to come out with 5G. What does 5G even mean? Consumers will find out in 2019.
19. Mixed Reality
Since Google Glass failed so spectacularly at the beginning of the decade, few have expected augmented reality to gain a foothold with consumers. However, with a quick rebrand to mixed reality (and a more attractive pair of glasses) this tech could revolutionize how people interact this year and years to come.
There you have it — the 19 technologies of 2019 with the most potential for influence. We’ll find out which ones go on to change the world around us, and which ones fail to have much impact.