Adaptive AI, metaverse, superapps and sustainable technology are some of the technology trends that will shape 2023, according to the analyst firm Gartner. A new year in which digital business transformation is expected to gain sufficient momentum to make progress in meeting the digital goals set by the EU for 2030.
If you are thinking of investing in digital transformation to improve productivity and competitiveness levels or boost sustainability and innovation in your company, here are the technology trends to watch.
Digital business transformation is an unstoppable phenomenon, as new technologies emerge and are applied to the different business processes, products, and assets that make up an organization.
According to data published in the Worldwide Digital Transformation 2022 Predictions, prepared by International Data Corporation (IDC), global spending on digital transformation in 2022 reached 1.8 trillion dollars, an increase of 17.6% compared to 2021. Given these figures, forecasts for 2023 confirm an increase in investment in digital transformation technologies. As IDC pointed out during its annual IDC FutureScape meeting, “By 2023, 90% of organizations worldwide will prioritize investments in digital tools to augment physical spaces and assets with digital experiences”. Furthermore, it is expected that “By 2025, 60% of organizations will capitalize on disruption with an enterprise- and ecosystem-wide approach to automation, leveraging model-based enterprise concepts, centers of excellence (COEs), and low-code/no-code platforms”.
Although business process automation and the use of no-code platforms will increasingly gain traction in the business arena, a “boom” is also expected in terms of the integration of other technologies such as adaptive AI, the metaverse and the industrial cloud. Therefore, we analyze the main strategic technology trends that will shape the world in 2023.
1. Adaptive AI
An increasing number of companies are adopting artificial intelligence systems to optimize customer service, design intelligent and self-sufficient solutions, and improve their competitive position in the market.
However, the first of our technology trends, Adaptive AI, goes one step further, going beyond the traditional Machine Learning models that have been used in the past. While traditional AI systems can have their level of functional accuracy and efficiency significantly affected by changes in the operating environment, AI systems based on an adaptive learning method employ a flexible and continuously enriched approach. This allows the system to monitor and learn from changes as they occur while continuing to work on older predictions, keeping processes up to date.
At the end of 2021, the company Facebook Inc., which provides the social networks Facebook and Instagram and the instant messaging service WhatsApp, changed its company name to Meta.
A change that, according to the company’s owner Mark Zuckerberg, is due to the need to create a “metaverse”. So, what is a metaverse? Currently, it can be described as a three-dimensional, virtual world. However, there is no agreed definition. Some define it as an evolution of the Internet, others speak of the convergence between our physical space and the digital environment and, finally, others refer to it as an ecosystem that integrates different virtual worlds that offer an immersive experience to users and where different daily activities can be carried out.
Currently, we could say that there are two types of metaverse, those that use Blockchain technology and those that do not. In the first case, we can find examples such as Decentraland, where Blockchain technology grants certain platform interoperability, empowering the use of coins (MANA cryptocurrency) in this 3D universe on other platforms. In the second case, we find examples such as the Fortnite video game, where a user can buy assets and use the own currency offered by that game, exclusively on that platform.
Superapps are the new natural evolution of the digital app market. Although it may seem a novel concept, the term was coined in 2010 by BlackBerry founder Mike Lazaridis, who defined them as “a closed ecosystem of many applications”.
It is therefore a kind of all-in-one platform, where users have all the services they need in one place. This has important benefits since it eliminates the need to download other applications and learn how to use them.
These superapps are gaining ground in markets such as Asia and Latin America, where they are already a reality, with examples such as WeChat in China and Rappi in Colombia. However, in the U.S. and Europe, for now, we are still waiting for a company to take the plunge and bring together different types of services such as financial, leisure, transportation, beauty and well-being in a single space.
4. Sustainable technology
Technology is an essential ally for the fulfillment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), established in the 2030 Agenda. This document was approved in 2015 by the United Nations General Assembly and establishes 17 goals and 169 targets to be achieved by 2030.
Taking this context as a starting point, technology can contribute to reaching many of the 17 SDGs. Some examples of this can be found in the generation of clean and affordable energy, through the construction of smart grids and smart cities; together with the measures for action against climate change, including the creation of green data centers and green power systems.
Sustainable technologies seek to preserve the principles of sustainability and minimize environmental impact.
5. Wireless value realization
The term “wireless value realization” is coined by the prestigious analyst firm Gartner to describe ” the range of ways in which next-generation wireless technologies will soon deliver new and improved services and reduce capital costs”.
As Gartner notes, wireless technology is undergoing a major evolution in two directions.
On the one hand, there is an improvement in basic wireless communication capabilities, leading to a greater range of possibilities compared to previous eras.
On the other hand, wireless technology is evolving in such a way that it transcends mere connectivity and incorporates capabilities that, according to Gartner, “serve as a foundation for digital innovation”. So much so that it is currently being applied in different areas related to radar sensing, improved ubiquity, development of ultra-low-power wireless systems, and value-added services, such as multicast transmission and vehicle-to-vehicle communications.
6. Industrial clouds
Industrial cloud platforms are another technology trend expected to shape the year 2023. This concept should not be confused with the commercial cloud. While the former refers to cloud systems or services designed to serve a specific industrial process, such as the manufacture of pharmaceuticals, the latter refers to cloud computing systems created exclusively for customers who demand this type of service and that do not serve a specific industrial process.
Industrial cloud solutions offer significant benefits and advantages in manufacturing and related environments such as:
– They foster vertical integration processes, i.e., they contribute to the alignment between production processes and those that are linked to the different business units of an organization such as marketing, sales, logistics, IT, etc. This is achieved by creating a seamless and data-centric collaborative network.
– The industrial cloud is better equipped to adapt to the changes brought on by Industry 4.0. This is due to its ability to receive data from smart devices and integrate communication protocols.
– The industrial cloud makes it possible to meet variable and highly customized industrial requirements as it contains data, standards and policies associated with a specific industry.
7. Digital immune system
To understand the nature of this term, we must go back to a 2012 publication entitled The Rise of a Digital Immune System. This document, published by the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI), attempts to clarify the meaning of this seventh member of the list of technology trends for 2023. According to the document, the term was coined by David Lipman of NCBI, who draws “an analogy between computing and biology—a recurring technique of computational scientists (viruses, genetic algorithms, neural networks)” to explain this concept.
According to Lipman, “A digital immune system would work in much the same way as an adaptive, biological immune system: by observing the microbial landscape, detecting potential threats, and neutralizing them before they cause widespread harm”.
Thus, the goal of this digital immune system is to detect a new virus, almost as soon as it enters an organization’s computer system. The immune system automatically captures it, analyzes it, adds detection and protection against this new type of virus, eliminates it and transfers the information to the systems running the antivirus, so that it can be detected imminently in the future. Thus, viruses can be eliminated almost as soon as they enter the system.
8. AI TRiSM
AI TRiSM stands for ArtificiaI Intelligent (T)rust, (Ri)sk and (S)ecurity (Management). A concept that refers to the need to develop methods that allow ethical principles to be applied to AI models. So, what are AI models? AI modeling refers to the creation, training, and implementation of machine learning algorithms based on available business data, thus emulating a logical decision-making process.
Therefore, organizations must commit to creating ethical and transparent models to protect users’ security and fundamental rights. This is even more important given the growing role of artificial intelligence and robotics at the enterprise level, smart industry, and 4.0 technologies, as anticipated for the coming years.
Such is the importance of this issue that, in November 2021, the 193 Member States of the UNESCO General Conference set a precedent by adopting what is considered the first global standard-setting instrument on AI, known as the Recommendation on the Ethics of Artificial Intelligence. A document aimed at protecting and promoting human rights, in addition to serving as a global normative basis, to contribute to respect for the rule of law in the digital world.
9. Applied observability
As far as the areas of IT and cloud computing are concerned, we could say that the concept of applied observability is divided into two phases.
Phase 1: Observing a constant flow of performance data from a distributed application and the hardware on which it runs.
Phase 2: Apply fixes and improvements to debug the distributed application, i.e. an application consisting of different components running in separate environments, within a network.
The purpose of the ninth item of the list of technology trends is to promote the integration and relationship between multiple sources of telemetry data (technology used to remotely monitor and analyze data from different computer systems) that, together, help to better understand the operation of a software system under observation, to monitor its performance and to identify problems for subsequent correction.
10. Composable software platforms
Technology is constantly evolving. Proof of this can be found in the great disparity of software solutions that dominate the technology market. This is a situation that, on many occasions, leads companies to start a whole process of research, analysis, and comparison of different solutions, until they find the one that best suits the needs of a particular department or area.
There is an alternative on the market that is capable of satisfying multiple business demands from all departments. This option is known as a composable software platform. A technological product that enables software components to be interlinked and changed will, using application connectors.
Companies that adopt this final technological trend will be able to respond more quickly to market changes and unforeseen events, minimize operating costs, increase efficiency and improve the organization’s competitiveness.