The rule of simplicity also applies to technological innovation. Simplicity is a turning point in adopting technology-not only for home users, but also for business users at work. The next wave of smart technology is expected to innovate operations, product development, customer service and overall business transformation at an unprecedented level. Technological innovations can help make medical breakthroughs, reduce environmental waste, grow food in harsh climates, and one day send the first person to Mars.
We are entering a new era of modern renaissance, in which intelligent technology is the cradle of innovation that transcends the boundaries of companies and industries. The possibilities are endless. But making these complex technological innovations easy to consume while providing a wealth of experience is the ultimate art of innovation, which creates the way to adoption.
2019 will mark the beginning of the renaissance of smart technology. It will be driven by what Gartner calls a "smart digital grid."
- Intelligence: AI exists in almost all existing technologies, creating entirely new categories.
- Digital: Blend digital and physical to create an immersive world.
- Grid: Leverages connections between an expanded set of people, business, equipment, content, and services.
Gartner's predictions for the top ten technology trends for 2019 combine all three pillars. Among these trends, I hope to see the most significant changes coming from smart technologies, especially autonomous things, enhanced analytics and AI-driven development. Organizations will be able to begin the transition from digital business to smart enterprises.
This is a very complicated transformation process. However, in today's era of technological renaissance, the focus is on simplifying complex business transformations.
Companies can take the following steps to streamline business transformation:
Use the cloud as a path to smart business transformation
Companies that integrate new intelligent technologies into their business processes will be best prepared to grow their business and adapt quickly to market changes. Cloud technology has matured and provides a way to become a smart enterprise in a hybrid business and technology environment. Many companies are already following this path. A study by IDG Communications concluded that by the end of 2019, nine out of 10 companies will store some of their applications or infrastructure in the cloud. The rest are expected to be realized in 2021.
Cross industry boundaries
For each specific industry or business type, new technologies are rarely immediately available. Business insight and industry relevance have been key factors in technology adoption and business success.
In this new era, the greatest innovations will happen at the intersection of various industries. For example, today's cars can not only provide private transportation for the office, but also make your child's next football training more convenient. They show you the best routes, alert you to traffic jams, stay entertained, and help you get roadside help. As self-driving cars continue to evolve, your car may soon be self-driving, and your groceries may be shipped by drone. New modes of transportation such as electric scooters, bicycles and drones are inspiring business partnerships between car manufacturers, financial service providers, food companies, retailers and others.
Another example is We Company (formerly known as We Work). The company was originally founded as a corporate co-working space, and has since repositioned itself as a business involving all aspects of employees' lives, not just in the office. Similar new products and services require domain expertise and cross-industry applicability.
Choosing the right team inside and outside the office
No matter how innovative these new technologies are, a successful transformation journey requires more than technology investment. It requires a smart and active team. Transformation success is the result of building the company's vision and ensuring that business processes and teams drive and execute the vision.
This also includes choosing the right technology partner. You need the best industry and technical experts, problem solvers and creative thinkers who consider not only your business today but also future opportunities. With the right team, partner ecosystem, and technology, your business can grow faster and more easily across markets and industries than your competitors.
Smart technology can transform a company into a smart enterprise. We will see new companies that are not limited to traditional industry segments. These companies strategically leverage innovation to grow and expand the entire industry by injecting intelligence into every part of their strategy and operations.
2019 does mark the beginning of an exciting era. The renaissance of smart technologies will take business innovation to new heights.