As 2017 begins to wind down Juniper Research has now released its top ten tech predictions for next year. Topping the list of the firm's predictions for 2018, Amazon and Facebook are expected to lead the way with over-the-top (OTT) services. The central focus of that is, of course, sporting events, which are expected comprise the bulk of the most contested value-added content. Specifically, the Juniper Research report claims that the two will be duking it out over key packages in rights auctions that will likely include those for the English Premier League. Amazon is expected to come out on top in that struggle, gaining revenues from Amazon Prime customers who joint primarily for the football. It would also, the predictions state, gain further revenue from retail transactions made with those new customers, offsetting some of the costs Amazon will likely pay for the rights packages it ends up with.
Apple and Google also managed to earn a mention in the top ten list released by Juniper Research. Alongside efforts from Facebook, the three companies are expected to take "Social Payments" further into the mainstream, spurring growth in the use of social platforms as a means for money to be transferred between both individuals and businesses. Meanwhile, Blockchain databases and artificial intelligence are expected to push into the financial and insurance sectors as the driving force behind new solutions in terms of both insurance and the systems backing financial institutions. That also ties directly into other advances in machine learning predicted by Juniper Research, including a surge in the use of machine learning for the purpose of verifying identity and an uptick in the creation and use of facial recognition-based software, applications, and solutions. The use of AI is not expected to stop their either, as Juniper Research also expects that the technology will become more prevalent in the form of Robo-advisors – which are effectively used to provide application-based or web-based financial or investment advice with a minimal amount of input from human users. Tying into that, the company predicts that technology to increasingly find its way into web-based investment platforms over the course of 2018. Edge computing, which is also referred to as optimized cloud computing, is also predicted to drive new acceleration in the implementation and development of the ever-increasing Internet of Things (IoT). As might be expected with new rapid advancements in the fields of IoT, Juniper Research also predicts that the wireless charging market will see substantial increases, as well as the market for Smart Toys. Finally, the trend in digital wallets and mobile-based transactions that have become successful in China and other Asian markets is expected to become much more widely adopted in Western markets.
As is always the case with these types of predictions, whether or not they turn out to be accurate remains to be seen. However, given Google's recent push in mobile-based payment platforms and the year's shift to focus on AI and the IoT, it shouldn't be too surprising that the trends will continue or that the associated technologies will continue pressing into new frontiers. In the meantime, the full report from Juniper Research can be accessed via the source link below.