Gartner: The top 5 personal technologies empowering digital business transformation

The following is a guest article from Annette Jump, senior director analyst in Gartner’s Technology and Service Provider (TSP) research practice.

The personal technology space is undergoing seismic change. Over the next 3-4 years, virtual assistants will dramatically change the nature of collaboration, smartphones will include AI-enabled computer vision, and immersive technologies will become core to business planning.

In fact, by 2023, digital business outcomes will drive 40% of investments in immersive technologies and enabling devices, up from less than 5% in 2018.

Unsurprisingly, these innovations present an enormous opportunity – and risk – for enterprises.

The positive impact is two-fold: Advances in personal technologies can drastically improve personal performances, while also driving highly profitable business initiatives.

To enable business transformation , technology leaders need to build outcome-oriented objectives that will show value and secure organizational buy-in, understand how solutions will be embedded into workflows, and always emphasize data security to respect regulations and foster trust.

If done correctly, these actions will help build a business that is future-proof and ready to disrupt instead of being disrupted.

Here are how the top five personal technologies will drive enterprise transformation and what businesses should plan for in their technology roadmaps.

1.Tech that can see: Computer vision

What it does:Computer vision (CV) is a process that involves capturing, processing and analyzing real-world images and video to allow machines to extract meaningful, contextual information from the physical world.

Other uses include e-government initiatives for faster and more secure services, such as driver’s license renewals, benefits and taxes. For healthcare, CV could help those with reduced visual abilities.

Take advantage of existing CV frameworks or CV as a service APIs from leading technology providers such as Google, Amazon and Microsoft. Focus on specific use-cases or vertical solutions before adoption.

2. Reshape user interactions: Virtual assistant

In the workplace, VAs can plan meetings from start to end, including booking the meeting room itself, organizing attendee schedules and taking meeting minutes. Additionally, they can improve user experience via voice analyst and sense a user’s emotions.

Organizations are already deploying virtual employee assistants to aid in everyday IT tasks, such as password resets and other service-desk issues.

3. Experience a design before its prototyped: Immersive experiences

What it does: Gartner defines immersive technology and experience as inclusive of augmented reality (AR), mixed reality (MR) and virtual reality (VR). VR and AR are separate but related technologies.

MR, meanwhile, extends both approaches to incorporate the physical world, leading to a convergence of these distinct technologies.

Additionally, it could be used in business-model reinvention – with visualization as a key part of the ideation process.

Remote field workers could perform maintenance and repair, locate specific goods, and give step-by-step visual instructions to workers in other locations. The most common improvement include analysis of big-volume data in an interactive, experiential format.

4. Print physical objects: 3D printing

What it does:3D printing (3DP) is a family of additive manufacturing technologies that use a device to create physical objects from digital models. 3D-printed materials include plastics, ceramics, glass, composites, hybrids, biomaterials and metals.

Output often requires machining or other treatment to get the desired finish or precision.

The largest 3DP devices can “print” small buildings and low-end 3DP devices are affordable for schools and individual makers.

3DP enables some products to be produced locally for consumption, so consider if that will be appropriate for some production processes to better manage inventory.

5. Improve training and health monitoring: Wearables

What it does: include a variety of devices – from wristbands and smartwatches to head-mounted display s and smart clothing.

Sensors integrated into wearables can monitor biometrics like heart rate and body temperature. In some cases, they can even sense external environmental conditions such as the presence of dangerous gases.

They have already been adopted by enterprises for a variety of different purposes, such as location tracking and multifactor authentication, as well as for simple interactions as an alternative to larger devices, like smartphones or tablets.

As noted, maturity levels differ for each of these top five personal technologies, but their effect on digital business could be profound. Throughout the exploratory process, ensure the smart capabilities and limitations of your products or solutions are clear and transparent to all users.

Also, stay up to date with regional and country-specific privacy regulations to avoid legal ramifications.


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