With 2024 on the horizon, these trends are helping shape the tech of the future. Not to mention, contextual factors like the need to take action on climate change and global economic shifts are playing their part. The former is shaping more sustainable, energy-efficient technologies, while the latter is making cost-efficiency a priority.
Understanding the tech landscape and budding trends always gives businesses a competitive advantage. It means organizations can invest in and scale solutions ahead of time, as well as position themselves as innovation leaders. With that in mind, these are the tech trends that will define 2024.
Top 5 Tech Trends to Invest in for 2024
#1 AI Ethics and Governance
As AI resources have become more readily available, businesses have been quick to leverage them to streamline internal processes, support content generation, and draw insights from large data sets. ChatGPT, Google Bard, and Midjourney were just a few of the most popular AI tools in 2023.
However, the integration of AI tools has come with gray areas around who owns and is responsible for the data that powers them. Research from Accenture shows that only 35% of global consumers trust how AI is implemented by organizations.
In 2024, businesses will likely have to navigate stricter regulations around AI. They will also need to transparently communicate how data is managed, who oversees the process, and what steps are taken to protect data (especially that of consumers).
Businesses should invest in this technological trend and should be committing to more comprehensive AI and data analytics capabilities, where they can track the entire lifecycle of data, and ensure that AI outcomes are not just more accurate and hence more trustworthy. Likewise, they should adhere to emerging AI regulations, as well as devise their own code of ethics for AI application.
#2 Quantum Computers
In June this year, an IBM computing executive declared that quantum computers were entering their “utility” phase. 2023 saw quantum computing move away from college physics departments and into corporate research and development facilities, where the increased computational power contributed to complex problem-solving in areas like finance and logistics.
Although still in its infancy in commercial spaces, quantum computing has huge potential to optimize investment strategies, product discovery, and encryption for businesses. As a result, 2024 will be marked by improvements to quantum computing that make it more accessible. The noisy machines that run quantum computing will be converted into smaller devices, post-quantum cryptography will thwart cyber attacks, and quantum sensing will power more granular data for businesses.
Better error correction in quantum computing will also feature heavily in 2024, generating more reliable, accurate outcomes.
#3 Sustainable Technologies
Technology is undoubtedly an essential component of everyday life now, and with its ‘necessity’ status has come the responsibility to lower its environmental impact. Moreover, the world looks to technology to create greener, smarter pathways for all areas of life. In 2023, that realization was evident in innovations such as carbon-tracking software, electric transport, green architecture, and e-waste recycling.
The new year will see new kinds of sustainable technologies, plus a focus on energy-efficient data centers, which consume significant amounts of energy to run. By consolidating lightly used servers, managing airflow for cooling, utilizing containment, and implementing efficient data storage measures, data centers can cut both energy use and spending.
2024 will also concentrate on making sustainable hardware the norm, reducing waste, and minimizing demand for raw materials. Tech companies will double down on recycling products, offering new services to repair electronic devices, improving packaging, and fostering greener collaboration in their industry.
This motivation for sustainability in tech will be fueled by ethical and economic sensibilities, especially considering that research reveals that businesses with strong Environmental, Social, and corporate Governance (ESG) performance are better positioned to outperform competitors financially.
#4 5G and Edge Computing
The promise of 5G lies in its ability to support huge data traffic volumes and continue to deliver advanced user experiences and connectivity. Meanwhile, edge computing brings data processing closer to the source, lowering latency and processing for centralized servers. Together, the two technologies accelerate localized, real-time analytics and decision-making for applications in remote healthcare, autonomous vehicles, and augmented reality.
For example, 5G and edge computing in healthcare in 2024 can improve new remote patient services by monitoring vital signs in real-time. In addition, the tech could leverage augmented reality for remote surgery and medical procedures. The result is more accurate diagnoses and treatment in the sphere of remote care.
In the transport sector, 5G and edge computing will be the backbone for automated features like autonomous driving and adaptive cruise control. Traffic control centers will also benefit from the tech that can process data faster and provide real-time updates.
As cryptocurrency adoption has soared, many people equate blockchain (the technology behind cryptocurrencies) with the likes of Bitcoin and Ethereum. Yet, blockchain has a variety of applications beyond crypto, and while these scenarios have been gaining momentum in the last few years, 2024 will further demonstrate the versatility of blockchain.
The distributed and decentralized nature of blockchain will lead to greater diversification in supply chains. For example, collaborative blockchain platforms will enable secure partnerships between multiple players. Blockchain will equally make supply networks more transparent and guarantee product authenticity.
Elsewhere, blockchain will strengthen security among IoT devices by providing an immutable record of all exchanges. Such traceability is crucial to prevent fraud and shield data. Blockchain can also be a secure platform to store and share data that powers machine learning algorithms – and better-protected data means better data integrity and thus AI insights. And lastly, governments could revolutionize voting system integrity with blockchain to cast and count votes. Also learn how Blockchain is reinventing loans!
These five trends will be at the forefront of tech in 2024, but that’s not to say they won’t each face challenges. All the trends will have to navigate technical complexity, security, interoperability, and regulatory blocks, as well as the unknown conditions of the coming year. Nonetheless, businesses that welcome the trends will gain a competitive edge, and be prepared to tap into movements even past 2024.
Speak with an intive expert to discover how best to integrate these trends into your business.