In today's rapidly changing world, business leaders who want to remain competitive need to be on high alert regarding new advances in technology. After all, Entrepreneur points out that those who stand at the frontlines of innovation are bound to deliver more business value and are more likely to succeed. However, with the relentless pace that new developments begin surfacing, it can sometimes be hard to keep up.
With so many advancements out there, here's a list of 5 new technologies that startups shouldn’t ignore.
AI is the idea that machines can do abstract thinking and analyze things within a context to act accordingly — much like humans do. Although we’re a long way from realizing the technology's full potential, a popular subset called machine learning (ML) is already moving in the right direction.
Currently, ML is being used by large companies such as American Express to help detect fraud in real-time. The transformative abilities AI could have on your startup could be very significant. It can help you create personalized experiences for your customers, analyze large amounts of data, and even automate repetitive tasks.
As telecommunication giants rush to introduce faster internet speeds via 5G, the opportunities for businesses increase, too. Take the emerging Augmented/Virtual Reality (AR/VR) as an example, as they used to be restricted by the amount of bandwidth. The arrival of 5G will boost the number of users and improve AR/VR technology as a whole. The retail industry can benefit from this, as users can visualize in-store products from their own home, or find out more information about a product by simply pointing a mobile phone at it.
Aside from providing faster streaming speeds for AR/VR, 5G presents a wave of new opportunities to improve your startup and how it works. This increased speed and capacity will transform everything that relies on the internet — which includes most of an organization's day-to-day operations.
BI is the umbrella term for various tools and processes that collect and analyze data. A post by Yoss entitled ‘What is Business Intelligence?’ states that BI can be used in various ways such as creating reports, benchmarking against competitors, and predicting future trends. All of this is made possible from a large pool of information about how different aspects of your startup work, from product design and marketing to sales and customer feedback.
Surprisingly, despite the clear benefits BI has, OnePoll reports that 56% of SMEs rarely check their business’ data, while 3% never look at it at all. Be sure to take advantage of the data your startup collects, and use it to uncover hidden opportunities, identify trends, and expose problem areas and successes.
The IoT is comprised of everyday objects that are wirelessly connected via the internet. This can include something as simple as a thermostat, house lights, or even the A/C, which can communicate with each other as well as the user.
Startups can also invest in smart locks that use digital keys, allowing you to log records of who uses a door. RFID tags can be installed on merchandise to avoid theft and automatically update the inventory, while mobile card readers can replace clunky, old cash registers. With Wired reporting that over half of new businesses are likely to run on the IoT by 2020, it’s clear that the benefits of this technology are endless.
PWAs are the solution for small businesses that aren’t capable of launching an app just yet — especially due to the extensive resources required. Using mobile browsers, PWAs are websites that look and feel like an application, allowing users to get the full experience without having to download an app.
Having a PWA increases the performance of your website on mobile, providing faster load times and using less data. A popular example of this is Twitter Lite, launched by Twitter in 2017 to reach out to users with inconsistent connections. As a result, the company saw a 75% increase in the number of Tweets sent and a 20% decrease in bounce rates.
Being aware of these technologies is the first step towards adopting them to boost your business efficiency, expand your customer base, and increasing engagement with both your staff and customers. If you want to develop related projects or have questions on any of the above, then feel free to get in touch with our team.