If you went back thirty years in time and told everybody around you that in thirty years there will be pocket devices that have more computing power than any computer around, home cinema TVs with a picture quality nearing that of real life, and then blabbed on about the wonders of technology in the twenty first century, you’d have a hard time finding someone to believe you. But as the years have gone past, technology has evolved at a tremendous rate, and it leaves us asking one very scary question-
What will the future of technology bring within the next 10-30 years?
I wouldn’t be able to guess, but I could imagine a world much different to the one today-perhaps we’d have time machines, flying or self driving vehicles, high speed transport, or teleportation devices, or all kinds of tech we’ve only seen fully functional in sci-fi television.
What we can take a guess at is what technology could bring in the next five years or more, and if my guesses are right, things could get pretty interesting. Let’s take a look at what the future of technology could bring within the next 5 to 10 years.
We are metaphorically attached to our smartphones every minute of the day, and it won’t take much effort for the likes of Samsung, Sony and Google to make that metaphorical attachment into a literal one.
Over the next 5 years we can expect to see a huge rise in wearable smart technology. Upon the release of Google’s smart glass project in 2014, we may unknowingly be walking ourselves into a world filled with all sorts of wearable technology.
Samsung has recently released the Galaxy Gear, a smart watch device that can connect to smartphones and access many of the same apps as the smartphone can.
Right now it would be considered strange to walk down the street with a pair of smart glasses and a smart watch on, but perhaps we will all be doing it just like we have all happily accepted the introduction of smartphone technology into our daily lives.
Technology won’t just improve in the smartphone industry either- we are seeing a rise in support for virtual reality kits over the last two years, and large companies like Microsoft are taking interest in making their own virtual reality gear.
Currently, the Oculus Rift, a virtual reality headset, has made headlines for its amazing ability to make the wearer feel inside a realistic game world- users can tilt their head from side to side, and well optimized games will react accordingly.
Click the image for a demo video!
Experiencing the Oculus Rift gives you a scarily real look into the future of video games and entertainment- being able to put yourself into a machine and live in a virtual world could be enjoyable, but the huge rise of the video game industry is showing that perhaps video games can consume a little too much in our lives.
4K Television and Equipment
Every technology industry in the world is led by manufacturers that are striving to create bigger and better products than their rivals, and because of this, the technological world advances incredibly quickly and perhaps too quickly than is really necessary.
4K television is a new type of display resolution that is four times higher than 1080p, and just like 1080p it probably won’t be long before everything is recorded and viewed in 4K resolution. Many analysts have predicted that 4K will be the new industry standard.
More improvement in smartphone technology
I doubt the rise in wearable tech will starve off standard smartphone production, and that is because there is still a lot to be done in the smartphone industry. For example, Samsung and LG have just announced that they both plan to release phones that have flexible displays this year.
Whilst the name flexible display suggests that the display can be bent at the users will, in this instance, flexible display just refers to a device that has a display that is not a flat surface. For example, with this technology, Samsung could create displays that could span all the way round the front, side and back of a device.
If smartphone manufacturers can work out how to allow the inner hardware of a phone to bend with the display, we could see a new era in smartphone technology that could lead to the introduction of real flexible smartphones that can bend, fold and fit into our pockets, only to then be unfolded into huge 10 inch or larger touch panels.
Mobile Service improvement
It’s not just smartphone manufacturers that are working on improving the usefulness of smartphone technology. A lot of other industries are working on creating services that can work on a mobile device.
For example, many patients hope that in the future they will be able to access medical information, keep in contact with doctors and ask for help on various health concerns straight from a mobile device. The mHealth industry is growing, and soon it may all be a part of our everyday lives.
We may also see the increase of mobile payment systems across the globe- for example, instead of paying for groceries with a debit card or cash, we could instead just swipe our smartphone at a till and have credit removed from our account.
It’s likely that pretty much every technology sector will be improved over the next five years. From microwaves to personal transport, technology is always growing, but the things mentioned above are possibly going to be the most fundamentally changing in our everyday lives.
Technology is great, but its sudden advance has a scarily uncanny resemblance to many science fiction worlds. Do we rely too much on our technology, or should we embrace it?