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Disruptive enterprise communications technologies

  1. Disruptive enterprise communications technologies © Martin Geddes Consulting Ltd December 2014
  3. Resurgence in voice
  4. There is a world of post-telephony voice emerging. Rather than being a vertically-integrated silo, it is software-based and can be embedded into many applications. These new modalities of voice interaction blend synchronous and asynchronous communications. They will add on a wide range of value-adding capabilities: recording, activity streaming, search, media processing, data mining and analytics, and predictive decision-making. The dominant paradigm is likely to be “show and tell”. Users have a (business) object they are discussing in front of them, which could be a simple PowerPoint slide or complex customer workflow. 4
  5. Application to person messaging
  6. The world of Communications Enabled Business Processes (CEBP), also known as Application to Person (A2P) messaging, has been growing fast for the past few years. This includes functions like process alerts, alarms and triggers which require human intervention. These increasingly have mobile and workflow element, where they are distributed in real-time to teams for action. The key goal is to have fast decision loops. 6
  7. On-the-go communications
  8. The connected vehicle is a transition of similar magnitude to the arrival of the connected home with broadband in the 1990s. It covers cars, buses, trains, trucks, boats and planes. These vehicles include telemetry, sensors, and integration with workflows and transport management systems. It is not merely a new location in which demand forms. Connected or autonomous vehicles can be seen as a form of supply too. They have permanent power, and can easily host advanced communications. They can form meshes, and create extended canopies of communications. 8
  9. Adios to email? Enterprise social collaboration and networking will continue to grow. All content created by knowledge workers will be shared among workgroups by default. 9 Email is the cockroach of communications: it seems to survive all forms of attack by more advanced life forms. Yet we could well see ‘peak email’ in the next few years.
  10. WearablesVirtualReality
  11. Telephony can be thought of an Immersive Virtual Reality v0.1. It is audio-only, but creates the cognitive absorption illusion nonetheless. At least 7 different virtual reality headsets are due to be in market or to be launched in 2014/15. The price point is already mass market (<$500). It is reasonable to assume this technology will be ubiquitous in the mid-2020s. Indeed, we have always been building a succession of ever more sophisticated virtual worlds. These appeal to wider range of senses, integrating sight, sound and touch. Gesture interfaces, sensory UX and perceptual computing are the current key trends. 11
  12. spirit of america / Sensor revolution Computers meet the real world
  13. Computers have historically lived in a ‘bubble’, separated from the real world. We have interacted with them by typing symbols on keyboards, reducing us to their level. The world of M2M, Internet of Things, Smart Cities and the Connected Home are changing this. The barrier between intelligence machines and the rest of the world is dissolving. The human environment will be festooned with machines that sense us, and send back signals to us. Wearables, augmented reality, and flexible giant wall-size displays will be normal everyday items. In this ‘ambient computing’ paradigm, all screens and sensors are resources for everyone to draw upon. 13
  14. Wearables 14 Workplace use of biosensing wearable technology is already beginning. This feeds into the ‘quantified workplace’ sector.
  15. Social Robotics Source: 15 That desk phone you have today is paralysed, blind and in a vegetative state. Future ‘phones’ will be able to see, autonomously move, and interact with us via voice.
  16. Virtual Assistants 16
  17. Voice comes in two flavors: content (aimed at other humans) and commands (aimed at machines). Virtual assistants today wait patiently for our commands, but in future they will be full participants in our conversations. This will, for example, change how we search for information and services, as these technologies become trusted life partners. It may be easier to change spouse than retrain a new AI engine in your quirks! 17
  18. Novel access technologies
  19. It is easy to extrapolate existing mainstream wireless technologies. Meanwhile, there are numerous potential disruptors. These include peer-to-peer meshes, ultrawideband, millimetre microwave, visible light, and spectrum-hopping white spaces. Both incumbent and new wireless technologies may find themselves mounted onto non-traditional network access mechanisms, such as balloons and drones. 19
  20. Fundamental advances in network architecture
  21. Recursive Internet Architecture (RINA) Recursive Internet Architecture (RINA) offers the promise of far higher performance, mobility, resilience, security at lower cost than current networks. It could be thought of as the end game of SDN: virtualisations within virtualisations within virtualisations. There are two EU-funded projects (IRATI and PRISTINE) building working prototypes. 21
  22. Democratized service creation WebRTC is a major structural change in the real-time communications landscape. It opens up service creation to 25m Web developers.
  23. Distributed trust systems Distributed trust and storage systems will deliver a “Bitcoin for everything” world. The blockchain is a technology that is not going away, and is going to be refined. 23
  24. Storage and search The list of personal storage buzzwords is long: quantified self; life tracking; dashcams; lifelogging; and personal data locker. Everyone will soon have a “Personal Wikipedia” and “Personal Watson”. The countervailing trend is for ephemeral applications, and associated privacy & steganography services.
  25. There are a number of recent advances in nanotechnology and fuel cells that give hope of a leap in battery performance. Their transition from lab to the real world remains to be proven. Wireless charging is a maturing technology, and “charging as service” will be needed for many uses including electric vehicles and personal communications. Smart cities will figure power services as a key component. 25 Milliwatts & megabits
  26. Long shots It is not possible to cover every possible technology disruption: quantum computing, cognitive enhancement, personal drones, “smart dust” sensors, in- building navigation, ultra- wideband radios, 3D printing and artisanal manufacturing… There are bound to be left-field technologies that come along in the next decade. 26
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  28. “In preparing for battle I have always found that plans are useless, but planning is indispensable.” — Dwight D. Eisenhower
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