The new Superpowers: CCS Predictions

Take a leading tech analyst firm. Bring together movers and shakers from across the industry. Add in a bevy of predictions on where the world is going.

Last week the great and the good in the tech industry gathered at the CCS Insight annual Predicts event. Seasoned analysts and experts shared their predictions for 2017 and beyond. By all accounts big, big changes are afoot.

Here are a few of the key takeaways:

Bots are coming to take your jobs
and your livelihood

  • Bots are going to be big business – changing the way we interact online, overtaking apps in usage and traffic volumes by 2021.
  • In the last quarter alone, 30k new bots were launched on the Facebook Messenger platform.
  • But there will be hurdles, with a high profile Bot breach likely to deal a blow to their reputation in 2017.
  • However, their rapid adoption will continue driving unprecedented automation into the workplace – so much so, they’re going to put a dent in middle class incomes.

Internet of Things is still a problem child

  • The supplier landscape within IoT is highly complex (typically firms need to go to 5 different suppliers to build a solution).
  • As such, it’s still perceived as being high risk – hence there are lots of small scale trials but very few firms making ‘all in’ investments.
  • The IoT bubble will burst in 2017 – resetting expectations and leading to a shake out in the supplier landscape.
  • While IoT is generating huge amounts of data, the value is all in what you do with it – which is where machine learning, AI and analytics are key.

From IoT to GDPR, 5G to Digital Worklpaces, what are the big bets you should be putting your money on?

Machine Learning can give you superpowers

  • By 2018, Machine Learning will overtake IoT as the hot investment area.
  • There are already front-runners like Google who are using machine learning to slash their cost base (it’s helped Google deliver a 53% increase in revenue in last 2 years with only 4% increase in CapEx).
  • By deploying IoT and Machine Learning, firms can gain ‘superpowers’ driving the next industrial revolution. Those that ignore it will fail. Those that embrace it will succeed.

You really don’t want to suffer a data breach

  • The European General Data Protection Regulation comes into force in 2018 – and will place a huge burden of responsibility on organisations.
  • Suffer a data breach and you’ll need to inform people affected within 72 hours or risk a fine of up to 4% of your revenue.
  • Given the average organisation currently takes 200 days to even identify a breach at the moment, you could say ensuring compliance is going to be a pretty big deal for firms.

[Take note even if we do eventually ‘Brexit’, the regulation will still apply to any firm holding data on EU citizens.]

5G will all be about the B2B opportunity

  • It’s likely to be 2019/2020 before 5G is commercially available – the big question is who will pay?
  • It’s going to require a huge CapEx on the part of operators – for instance, some 40-50k small cell sites will need to be deployed on top of the existing 4G infrastructure.
  • To monetise 5G, the operators are going to have to look to B2B and machine-to-machine applications – rather than the consumer.

The Digital Workplace is hot to trot

  • Significant investment and focus is being made by firms in digitising their workflows, mobilising processes and building multi-channel customer experiences – all in order to deliver competitive advantage.
  • It’s anticipated that the firms that invest in building digital workplaces will drive 5x the growth rate of those that don’t.
  • Employees want ‘choice computing’ – they now use an average of 4.5 devices (vs 4.1 a year ago).
  • A wave of digital apps, mobile and cloud computing is hitting the enterprise – yet 74% of spend (including apps and devices) is happening outside of the IT department.
  • Microsoft is well positioned – but to maintain it’s dominance in Enterprise, it will need to make Office 365 free for consumers (winning the personal device to win in the workplace).

Smartphones are where the money used to be

  • Shipments of mobile phones are starting to plateau – we saw 4% growth in smartphones this year vs 6% forecast for next.
  • India is where the biggest opportunity lies – smartphone volumes are set to double by 2020.
  • Smart watches still can’t find a compelling use case that drives mass-market adoption.
  • Quantified self devices (health and fitness) is where the growth will be – so much so, in 2018 smart sports shoes will sell 1 million pairs to become the first mass market smart clothing.

Bonus material:

  • Future of TV: traditional broadcasters will drop linear programming by 2025 in favour of on-demand.
  • Speed demons: The UK is now the fastest on the planet for mobile internet speeds.
  • IoT has taken off in West London: Heathrow Airport is IoT-ed up to the hilt – it’s a 100% ‘fly by wire’ operation.
  • Cloud costs less and less and less: Amazon has reduced its prices 52x since it first launched Amazon Web Services.
  • Job lot: Apple has suffered 4 consecutive quarters of revenue decline from hardware – all is not lost, its software and services business is now almost equal in size to Facebook.
  • Apps really are working: What’s the second biggest category on all the major apps stores after gaming? Business apps.


Predictions for 2017 and beyond

Predictions for 2017 and beyond

A big thank you once again to CCS Insights – and apologies for any misinterpretation/abuse of the fine facts, figures and predictions shared on the day.