What will be the Top 10 Tech Trends in 2015?

INTERNET-of-THINGS.jpg2014 was a big year for technology and digital marketing and 2015 will be no different. Here's what Daniel Christos, technical director and partner at Sydney-based digital creative studio Cypha, feels are the top 10 digital trends to watch in 2015.

1.  The Internet of things  The Internet of things began to take shape last year as more and more companies were experimenting with connected devices. This year we will see a move away from the kick starter type projects for early adopters and move into more everyday consumer products providing real world, valuable solutions.
WEARABLES.jpg2. Wearables  Wearable technology providers will begin to consolidate as market leaders are established. The apple iWatch is on the horizon and the 2015 CES conference has seen a flood of wearables that are ready to hit the shelves. Accenture research confirms that nearly half of consumers would consider purchasing some type of smart wearable such as a smart watch or fitness tracker in the next few years.

3. Smart data  With a flood of new connected devices set to hit the market the demand for quality analytics and data services will increase. A tonne of new data will now be available and brands need solid tools in order to accurately translate this data into valuable insights. It's no longer just about big data; big data is useless without smart insights from specialised analytical services.

4. Education  We are already starting to see an increase in online training with MOOCS and Cloud LMS providers expanding at a rapid rate. Companies like Pluralsight, Lynda, Udemy all offer access to great online course content for a relatively tiny investment in comparison to traditional education. It will be interesting to see how government schools embrace these new ways of learning as department schools support students bringing their own devices into the classrooms with a move away from the laptop rollout of the previous years. We should start to see an increase in app development targeting 'in class room' experiences that bring learning to life.

5. Product development  Brands are moving into product development utilising connected technologies an in 2014 we received numerous enquiries from brands curious about product development and as a result, we have prototyped several products with more in the pipeline for this year. Check out the McWilliams Wines "Wine O'clock" prototype that allows users to control an automatic wine pourer and aerator based on the time of the day set using a mobile.

6. Beacons   Some brands are still apprehensive about using beacons or Bluetooth LE, however we predict we will see more real world applications this year as brands are educated as they talk to specialised providers who demonstrate the creative applications of beacons beyond just pushing offers.

7. Merging online and offline   A common thread of the year will be the further blurring of the line between online and offline which underpins a number of the trends for the year. Advances in payment solutions, data management, analytics, connected devices along with consumer and brand education will allow brands to monitor and react more effectively to consumer needs across online and offline channels.

8. Mobile traffic surpasses desktop  As of today a number of sectors are already reporting the 50% threshold has now been passed from desktop to mobile as being the main device for consumption including retail and some major publishers here and in the UK. As a result we will see more and more online experiences target specifically mobile and tablet devices with the desktop experience trailing.

9. Content Marketing  More brands will begin to adopt content marketing as an important part of their overall marketing strategy as traditional marketing continues to struggle. Branded storytelling, video stories, user generated content and owned content will continue to deliver great results in the New Year as consumers continue to respond stronger to branded storytelling and less to content selling. A great example of this is Airbnb's magazine Pineapple.

Mobile apps will also begin to be utilised as a greater communication channel, with the sheer amount of users on some app platforms, it is a natural progression for brands to begin to utilise this as a communication channel.

10. Personalisation   We will start to see an increase in personalised digital experiences. E-commerce sites have done this well for quite some time with product recommendation algorithms, however we will see this expand to general web browsing with retargeting, recommended content and placements based on previous use, referring site, time of day, location or current device. This will also call for advancements in analytics and CMS software which a number of software providers are beginning to offer.

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