6 emerging technologies in 2021
Technology is always changing. Whether it’s delivery apps taking off because of a global pandemic or video games incorporating virtual reality (VR), technology holds an immense amount of power.
As 2020 comes to a close, many are wondering what the next year holds. The following six emerging innovations are fields that will develop further throughout 2021.
1. Artificial Intelligence
Artificial intelligence (AI) is not necessarily a new innovation, but it’s one that still has yet to reach its full potential. In 2020, AI started to flourish -- and it will continue to do so throughout 2021.
Applications for AI are increasing in variety and capability. From health care to business to gadgets, most tech is now adapting. For instance, home hubs like Google Home and Amazon Alexa use AI to adapt to residents’ routines so they can provide better assistance for all their needs -- like calls, emails, grocery lists and more. These integrations are only going to grow from here, in every aspect of life.
2. 5G Connectivity
2020 promised 5G and 2021 is going to roll it out in earnest. With the release of the new 5G-equipped iPhones 12 models, especially, the new network is finally here to take off. It promises faster speeds than any network before.
At its full potential, 4G had the possibility of reaching around 100 megabits per second. 5G, however, will be 100 times faster in theory, reaching up to 10 gigabits per second. These speeds bring connectivity to people in innovative ways. A text or call or a Google search will happen in the blink of an eye.
3. Mixed Reality
Mixed reality is the overarching term that encompasses virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR). These two fields have been especially important for gaming in 2020 and will continue to integrate well in the coming year.
Additionally, AR and VR will lead to other applications. In fields like health care, where medical school students need visual learning, AR can augment a surgical procedure right in front of them.
VR can also work wonders for younger children’s education as they dive into a world where they can explore and learn about any subject.
Automation is one thing. Hyperautomation is another. 2021 is going to see common tasks and procedures receive an automated counterpart. Cars are a good example in 2020 -- the conversation around automated, self-driving vehicles has taken off, with brands like Tesla integrating autopilot modes.
Robots are great for business, automatically carrying out tedious processes that would otherwise take people a while. Cleaning, security, deliveries -- these areas will see hyperautomated changes in the coming year, with tech carrying out each of them efficiently.
5. Internet of Behaviors
The internet of behaviors (IoB) is a complex emerging tech field. People are constantly exhibiting some form of behavior -- which technology then processes as data. The device can then send this data to a bigger organization.
The developing idea for 2021 to consider is that the IoB could send this data to governments and organizations for them to better understand human behavior. Wearables that track health could distribute a person’s stats to an insurance company that could then adjust their premiums accordingly.
It’s an interesting field of technology that will no doubt gain more traction, and potentially controversy, in the coming year.
6. Smart Gadgets
Everything is smart these days -- for good reason. Smart gadgets tend to make life easier. These gadgets have been around for quite some time, but 2021 is going to bring in a new wave. Tech is going to reach things that people didn’t know they needed a smart version of.
Bike locks that offer more protection, shoes that track activity, light bulbs that adapt to daylight and residents’ routines -- these smart innovations show what’s possible for the tech world to revolutionize.
Tech Keeps Changing the Game
Technology has a way of both following the trends and creating them. These six examples show how tech brings the world to new places, creating its own path for everyone to adapt to. They each have their roots in previous years, but 2021 is going to breathe new life into them.
Devin Partida writes about AI, apps and technology at ReHack.com, where she is Editor-in-Chief