Top 10 Technology Trends for 2012

  • Mobility, social, analytics, cloud and cyber represent five imminent technology forces for business innovation

Deloitte announced the research findings from its 3rd annual “Tech Trends 2012” report, which identifies and predicts the top 10 emerging and disruptive technologies that are expected to play a crucial role in how businesses are anticipated to operate globally in 2012 and beyond.

The “Tech Trends 2012” distinguished the technologies in two categories: “(Re)emerging Enablers” and “Disruptive Deployments.” (Re)emerging Enablers are five technologies that many CIOs have spent time, thought and resources on in the past, but deserve another look this year. Disruptive Deployments are five additional technologies that showcase new business models and transformative ways to operate. The 10 predicted technologies identified for 2012 are:

(Re)Emerging Enablers:

Geo-spatial Visualization: Within the world of visualization, geospatial takes advantage of an explosion of geographical, location-aware data. Sources feeding this growth include new semi-structured data from mobile devices, geo-tagging of existing enterprise structured data and tapping into new streams of location-aware unstructured data.

Digital Identities: The digital expression of identity is growing more complex every day. Digital identities should be unique, verifiable, able to be federated and non-repudiable. As individuals take a more active hand in managing their own digital identities, organizations are attempting to create single digital identities that retain the appropriate context across the range of credentials that an individual carries. Digital persona protection is becoming a strong area of cyber focus.

Data Goes to Work: Organizations are finding ways to turn the explosion in size, volume and complexity of data into insight and value. This is occurring across structured and unstructured content from internal and external sources. This is expected to complement but not replace long-standing information management programs and investments in data warehouses, business intelligence suites, reporting platforms and relational database experience.

Measured Innovation: CIOs can help facilitate the discovery of the next wave of true disruption–and continuously improve the business of IT and the business of the business. Measured innovation offers an approach to managing both disciplines by providing a pragmatic way to identify, evaluate and launch potential innovations with a focus on aligning opportunities to areas that can fuel disruption and create measurable, attributable value.

Outside-in Architecture: Flexibility in operating and business models is proving more important. As a result, need to share is colliding with need to know and shifting solution architectures away from a siloed, enterprise-out design pattern and into an outside-in approach to delivering business through rapidly evolving ecosystems.

Disruptive Deployments:

Social Business: The emergence of boomers as digital natives and the rise of social media in daily life have paved the way for social business in the enterprise. This is leading organizations to apply social technologies on social networks, amplified by social media, to fundamentally reshape how business gets done. Some of the initial successful use cases are consumer-centric, but business value is available – and should be realized – across the enterprise.

Hyper-hybrid Cloud: Cloud-based and cloud-aware integration offerings are expected to continue to evolve, and many organizations face a hybrid reality with a mix of on-premise solutions and multiple cloud offerings. The challenge becomes integration, identity management and data translation between the core and multitenant public cloud offerings, and offering lightweight orchestration for processes traversing enterprise and cloud assets.

Enterprise Mobility Unleashed: Mobility is helping many organizations rethink their business models. Consumer-facing mobile applications are only the beginning. With the explosion of mobile use cases, organizations should make sure solutions are enterprise class – secure, reliable, maintainable and integrated to critical back-office systems and data.

Gamification: Serious gaming simulations and game mechanics such as leaderboards, achievements and skill-based learning are becoming embedded in day-to-day business processes, driving adoption, performance and engagement.

User Empowerment: User engagement remains a key doctrine for enterprise IT with consumerization setting expectations for solutions built from the user-down, not the system-up. Compounding the need, IT is becoming increasingly democratized, with empowered end-users able to directly source solutions from the cloud or app stores – on a mobile device and increasingly on the desktop.

“The next 12 months will see several technologies including the cloud, big data and mobility continue to grow, while a topic like gamification is just starting to emerge at the enterprise level,” said Bill Briggs, director, Deloitte Consulting LLP and co-author of the report. “It will be important for CIOs to help lead their organizations in these areas, as they can redefine the role that IT plays within an organization and place them in a position to positively disrupt their operating models, business models, or even their industries.”


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