Top 10 Tech Predictions for 2014 You Will Not See Anywhere Else

By Peter Bernstein December 25, 2013

As one of the most popular songs of the holidays, Deck the Halls, goes, “Tis the season to be jolly!”  It is also the time of the year for everyone to make predictions. In fact, in the tech world making predictions is seemly an occupational necessity and as a result my inbox has been flooded with prognostications about “E”verything. 

Photo courtesy of beniciaherald.files.wordpress.com

Interestingly, there is a tremendous amount of consensus about 2014 in tech. On everyone’s lists are such items as enhanced investment in: online and device security, the cloud (as in anything that can become an XaaS acronym), virtualization, BYOD accommodation, 3D printing, wearable tech and anything to do with wireless making almost all of the lists. Indeed, not only is there virtual (pardon the pun) unanimity about the subject matter, but most of the predictions tend toward being joyous. In short it appears that 2014 will be a very good year for all of the above. 

In the spirit of spreading a little holiday joy, it only seems appropriate to provide my list of the Top 10 Tech predictions for the coming year that I can safely guarantee you will not see on anyone else’s list. I leave it to readers to reflect upon the plausibility of any or all of the below actually happening. 

In not necessarily rank order, here you go:

  1. Twitter is hacked by Anonymous (or people claiming to be from that crowd).  The real identities of hundreds of millions currently hiding behind alias will be revealed. A black market for those identities will develop rapidly.  
  2. Amazon will buy the U.S. Postal Service in order to use rural offices set for closure as drone airports and will provide free mail service anywhere in the U.S. for anyone purchasing sending packages over $75 in value.
  3. Facebook, saying it was only trying to give advertisers the best information available, will be exposed for hacking into NSA.  Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg will be offered amnesty in exchange for telling the NSA how he did it and who bought the information.
  4. Adding to woes with global regulators, Google will be hit with a false advertising claim by the U.S. Federal Trade Commission (FTC) for advertising its plastic wearable tech as Glass.
  5. In recognition that the world going forward is about anticipating the needs of the younger generation and in a return to its roots, in a surprise move Microsoft’s Board will select 22 year-old Harvard Business School dropout and Checksolvakian émigré, Steven Sboj, their new CEO.
  6. Speaking of B-Schools, Stanford Business School will use its substantial endowment to purchase Blackberry for mere pennies on the dollar for use as a “hands-on” teaching moment for its students and faculty.
  7. With a tip of the hat to my TMC colleague Rory Thompson, Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., Ltd. (aka Foxxconn Technology Group) will begin manufacturing for a Korean-based smartphone start-up a device with an embedded stun gun for use on people in public places and airplanes who talk too loud on their devices. It will be the first in a series of counter-measure products and apps that will proliferate in the market in 2014.
  8. A 12 hour video of the Yule Log, for those abroad not familiar with a U.S. TV staple of decades which is nothing more than a pre-recorded session of a burning fireplace, will be the most viewed video on YouTube.
  9. The #1 selling app for Android and iOS will be, Search and Destroy, designed to make it easy for people to erase anything bad on social media and track down and wipe clean on any device or website any reference to “bad or inappropriate” content.
  10. A video of Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer working from home will go viral.

And, in keeping with a Wall Street tradition of handing out bonuses at this time of year, here are two bonus predictions.

First, the Internet will no longer be for porn. Online gambling will nudge out porn as the most popular activity in terms of time spent on the web. 

Second. Apple will invest heavily in start-up robotics in an arms and legs race with Google. This will in turn spark a new reality TV show, Bot Battles. It will have several interactive components. It will also have gambling which will create a cottage industry of handicappers and odds maker. The show will immediately pass Duck Dynasty as the most-watch show on cable, and will make several unknown “nerds” global celebrities. 

I would like to close by inviting you to send along any jolly predictions of your own. I will make a list and check it twice to make sure will filter those that are naughty or nice, and publish the best of them. 

“Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!” 

 
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