At The PC Support Group, while specialising in IT Support, we are constantly on the pulse of the latest technology trends – and a new year means new possibilities. Here’s some things to look out for in 2014.
January. A month of dismal, dank and dark days, never ending sales and even less appealing credit card bills.
But for gadget geeks seeking their annual fix of technological titillation, the month that everyone loves to hate actually provides a ray of optimistic light as the great and good in the world of innovation gather in Las Vegas to display their wares.
The Consumer Electronics Show (CES for those in the know) takes place in the Nevada dessert each year and is a great place to showcase the latest advances and innovations – which may be hitting the shelves in the months to come.
So here are five technological trends that may, or may not have featured, but are certainly worth keeping an eye out for in 2014:
1. Wearable Technology
As if we don’t have enough access to the technology that now rules our life, it seems the trend is to start wearing it as a fashion accessory. OK, maybe USB bracelets, Tweeting shoes and GPS jackets are some of the more novel inventions, but a number of smart accessories look set to change the way we live our lives. Apple’s Pebble and Samsung’s Gear are setting the trend with their Smart Watches, though Google Glass could soon change the mobile phone as we know it if predictions are to be believed.
2. Curved Screens
Both Korean electronics manufacturers Samsung and LG released large, 4K, curved screens last year following on from prototype products which were unveiled 12 months previous. Using a slight bend in order to replicate the effect of cinema screens and “increase immersion, producing a natural pseudo 3D effect,” is thought to only be beneficial when used on screens over 100 inches in size. So we can be sure to see even bigger sized TVs on the market over the coming months.
3. Biometric Data
Fingerprint recognition technology and iris scanning isn’t a new phenomenon, but in the way we live our everyday lives it certainly is. 2014 could be the “breakout” year for this sophisticated software. Made popular by its inclusion on the iPhone 5s, it’s a pretty safe bet that we will see similar developments – not just among phone manufacturers – but on all types of security systems, including locks and even car ignition systems.
4. 3D Printing
3D printing has come on leaps and bounds in recent years and there is little doubt in the technology world that we haven’t seen anything yet. The only sticking point, it would seem, is the cost of the equipment needed to use such software. The printers required are expensive and taking the 3D pictures of objects that are needed to print is out of reach for most. But be assured, companies are working on both issues – so don’t give up on the idea just yet.
5. In-Car Android
If reports are to be believed, Google and Audi are planning to announce their intention to create an Android-powered in-car entertainment system. Rumour has it that the companies plan to establish Android as an important technology tool for future vehicles; allowing people to access music, navigation software, apps and services within their cars. The obvious question is how vehicles would remain connected to the internet for long enough periods to make the technology worthy, with 4G chips imbedded into the vehicle’s chassis a potential solution.