Hopefully everyone is rested, relaxed and ready to tackle the new year. We wanted to start off 2010 by highlighting some digital trends to keep an eye on. The communications landscape is still shifting at a rapid pace and every year a handful of innovations move from buzz status to become game changers. We will continue to monitor these innovations on this blog and highlight ways organizations are beginning to take advantage of the opportunities provided by these emerging technologies.
1. Location Awareness:
Your phone knows exactly where it is and what direction it’s pointing. Your computer can get pretty close —within 20 feet — just by scanning nearby WiFi networks. Location awareness will continue to be integrated into more online experiences. Twitter recently added geolocation to their API, allowing each individual tweet to be pinpointed on a map. Foursquare, the hot new Web application, is entirely based on “checking in” at various locations around your town, letting you announce your presence to friends automatically.
2. Integrated Sign-ins:
Facebook Connect, OAuth, and Google Accounts are headed for a collision course this year. Which one will come out of the fray as your single sign-in to the Internet? Innovations here will help organizations better leverage the social web across their entire online presence.
3. More Smart phones:
Google’s Nexus One could shatter the smart phone model in 2010 by letting customers buy a phone independent of a cell phone provider. Look out, iPhone, Blackberry, Android and Palm Pre.
4. Google Wave:
Just as e-mail has matured as a communications medium, Google is giving it a makeover. Google Wave, which is still operating by invite only, enables users to work in real time in shared discussions, or "waves,” that can encompass many forms of interaction: instant messaging, notes, comments, editing shared documents, and so on. Participants can move a slider to "replay" a wave to see how it took form — effectively eliminating the frustration of working on a document for an hour only to discover that the changes have already been made by someone else.
5. The Year of the Tablet:
Amazon bet hard on the future of digital books, and despite the economy making 2009 a tough year to convince people to invest in e-books, 35 percent of book sales on Amazon were sold in Kindle format. We may see this marketplace shaken up further this year if Apple comes out with its rumored “iPad.” Apple’s device may add to the e-reader craze, and we’ll be watching closely to see what these devices mean for traditional newspapers and magazines.
Here's to a successful 2010.