The buzzwords heard in most tech circles nowadays talk include terms such as the IoT, AI (Artificial Intelligence), convergence, and quantum computing. The ramifications for each of these trends are part of the ongoing transformation toward a digital society that shows no signs of stopping. Industry experts and analysts from Omdia, AI Business, and IoT World Today have collaborated to produce an eBook giving their predictions on the key trends shaping the applied intelligence landscape this year.
Here’s a summary of some of the key takeaways:
1)Connecting the next wave of IoT devices
According to the authors, 5G technology, which is finally ramping up, will become a key component in linking the next generation of IoT-connected devices. This will start with 5G-enabled security cameras and AGVs (automated guided vehicles) for factories but should spread to other use cases. In addition, the authors believe the emergence of low-orbit satellites will give rise to satellite technology as an IoT connectivity solution.
2)IoT moves toward cloud hyperscalers
The eBook’s authors say cloud hyperscalers, such as Google and Amazon, will continue wielding their clout in the IoT by providing new avenues for users, such as alternate connectivity options, for customers to access cloud services and data. This will provide stiffer competition for CSPs, system integrators, and traditional IoT platform providers.
3)Enterprises turn to the IoT for environmental sustainability
Many companies talk about environmental sustainability and lowering their carbon footprint. How do they reach that goal? The eBook’s authors believe using the IoT will be key. This will involve a number of measures, with the use of connected sensors as the key element in monitoring energy usage and building up a database of information to help develop environmentally sustainable practices. Sensors will be the enabling technology in smart, energy-efficient buildings; more environmentally-friendly agricultural businesses; more energy-efficient vehicle fleets; and greater use of renewable energy sources.
4)AI at the IoT edge
The growth of machine-learning (ML)-based analytics has moved beyond the cloud and data center to the edge, where it is more readily accessible. According to the eBook, ML enables more context-specific, granular analysis based on more complex sensor data scenarios, as well as enabling analysis of more complex data types including audio, images, and video. The authors believe while there are diverse hardware approaches used to accelerate ML workloads at the IoT edge, a key approach will be to locate an ML co-processor into an IoT edge system-on-chip (SoC).
5) AI becomes part of enterprise operations
When Omdia last surveyed AI readiness, more than half of 500 respondents said their companies were AI-competent, meaning they were building formative strategies and organizations to operationalize AI. The authors expect these companies to become AI-proficient this year.
6) AI goes mainstream
With companies becoming AI-proficient, the eBook authors believe 2022 mark the beginning of AI becoming directly embedded into company business practices. The authors noted that Salesforce, SAP, Oracle, and other applications providers now enable companies to readily enable contextual AI outcomes without requiring AI and data experts. Omdia expects a similar wave of AI outcomes to emerge through existing user-facing software products
7) Enterprises learn to be accountable when they use AI
The eBook authors expect companies have finally started to grasp the concept of ethical AI. Trust will be fundamental in unlocking and scaling AI’s potential. “We need to hold our AI and our organizations accountable by making the right choices every day,” said Natalia Modjeska, Research Director, AI. “What we choose matters, no matter how small these choices appear. They create the future for us, our children, and generations to come. We need to act responsibly.”
8) Merging technologies
While technologies such as the IoT and AI can be considered distinct technologies, there will be a merging of these technologies that provide mutual benefits. Increased data from IoT-connected sensors will provide more information for AI to analyze and make intelligent actionable decisions. This will also help pave the way for the growth of quantum computing.
9) Quantum computing becomes a reality
Finally, the eBook’s authors expect quantum computing to move beyond the hype stage, through several smaller but significant trends. An increase in quantum computing investment from government, private, and public equity sources will occur, as will the increased uses with quantum computers, simulators, and hybrid cases. Partnerships will expand between research centers and hardware and software vendors.
Spencer Chin is a Senior Editor for Design News covering the electronics beat. He has many years of experience covering developments in components, semiconductors, subsystems, power, and other facets of electronics from both a business/supply-chain and technology perspective. He can be reached at [email protected]