10 Greatest and Worst Tech Developments of 2019

2019 was a blended bag by way of expertise tendencies. On one hand, the shoppers lastly began actually worrying about their knowledge and large tech made some massive guarantees to safeguard it, on the opposite, deepfakes went mainstream and are surprisingly every to create, turning into an excellent greater explanation for concern within the period of faux information and misinformation campaigns. 5G and foldable smartphones additionally generated a variety of buzz this 12 months however each applied sciences are but to succeed in the lots. Cloud gaming, streaming wars, TikTok, digital assistants, and electrical automobiles had been a few of different tech tendencies in 2019. So, this is a fast take a look at the 10 greatest and worst tech tendencies of this 12 months.

1. Foldable smartphones

After years of rumours, leaks, and firm guarantees, foldable telephones lastly turned a actuality in 2019. Samsung and Huawei had been two of the mainstream smartphone makers to unveil the primary foldable smartphones. Regardless of their anticipated arrival within the first half of the 12 months, each telephones had been delayed over high quality issues. Whereas Samsung’s Galaxy Fold saga was far more public and bought widespread consideration, Huawei quietly postponed the launch of Mate X to work out the kinks.

Probably the most thrilling foldable smartphone of the 12 months got here from Motorola. Dubbed merely as Motorola Razr, the cellphone took design cues from its eponymous characteristic cellphone predecessor lineup that had arrived in 2004. Motorola Razr (2019) sports activities a clamshell design that appears to be getting a greater reception however given it’s but to succeed in the palms of reviewers and shoppers, lots stays to be seen.

Samsung, Huawei, and Lenovo-owned Motorola aren’t the one smartphone makers engaged on foldable smartphones although. Just about each main smartphone firm is busy growing their very own foldable telephones. We hope to see these within the coming 12 months.

2. 5G

5G lastly turned a actuality this 12 months as a number of telecom operators throughout Europe, South Korea, Australia, China, and the US started providing the next-generation telecom community. Whereas 5G is but to turn out to be as mass market expertise and can take no less than just a few years to succeed in that stage however simply the anticipation of varied avenues that it’ll open and issues that it’ll make attainable stored everybody excited. It’s anticipated to proceed as a trending tech subject subsequent 12 months as properly.

India is but to get within the 5G groove as we’re removed from getting the brand new telecom expertise. The federal government is but to even conduct the public sale to promote airwaves for 5G however hopefully we are going to see that occur in 2020.

3. Cloud gaming

Cloud gaming has been the buzzword within the gaming trade this 12 months, however the thought is sort of a decade outdated. So, what modified in 2019? The arrival of huge names like Google and Microsoft, coupled with developments in cloud gaming expertise. Nvidia’s GeForce Now, Sony’s PlayStation Now, and Parsec have been within the recreation for just a few years now, however the expertise was not thought of actually pathbreaking or seamless sufficient resulting from points like latency and sluggish Web speeds. Nevertheless, Google’s Stadia and Microsoft Mission xCloud made issues higher by offloading the duties to sooner and extra succesful servers.

What else? Properly, it’s no shock that AAA titles often require a robust (and dear) {hardware}, or a console, to run at a good body price with respectable graphics output. That is the place Stadia and Mission xCloud ship in heaps. You now not want all that brawn. All you want is decently highly effective smartphone, and you’ll play video games like Shadow of the Tomb Raider with out a hitch. We tried Satan Could Cry 5, Tekken 7, and Gears 5 on an Android cellphone with Microsoft’s Mission xCloud, and the expertise was surprisingly good with none points that would qualify as a deal-breaker. And that too, after utilizing a VPN. Neither Stadia, nor Mission xCloud can be found in India, however the latter will arrive subsequent 12 months. And given the growing reputation of smartphone gaming in India, cloud gaming has an enormous potential to alter the panorama of the entire trade.

4. Streaming wars

Though the likes of Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime Video have been round for a while, 2019 was the 12 months when seemingly everybody determine to convey their very own streaming providers. US, expectedly, was entrance and centre of this streaming re-revolution however 2020 will most definitely take the streaming wars globally.

Apple and Disney had been the 2 largest names to launch their video streaming providers this 12 months, however the likes of AT&T and Comcast are on the point of roll out their very own providers subsequent 12 months. AT&T will convey the HBO Max and Comcast will launch Peacock. It stays to be seen if HBO Max and Peacock will launch exterior the US.

5. TikTok

TikTok, as you would possibly know, is a video-sharing social media platform that has turn out to be the discuss of the city. However the app is nothing in need of a phenomenon and has exploded in reputation, particularly in India. TikTok has clocked a mind-bending 1.5 billion downloads worldwide on the Apple App Retailer and Google Play. India alone accounted for 277.6 million downloads this 12 months. From signing NFL offers and roping in massive names within the leisure trade to creating social media stars out of a mean joe, TikTok has performed all of it.

TikTok, which lets customers make lip sync clips and publish response movies, employs AI to analyse customers’ pursuits and preferences, which suggests, as soon as the app learns your style, it’s onerous to cease scrolling the feed. No app within the latest reminiscence has given customers of all ages as a lot inventive freedom to exit and categorical themselves as TikTok. Seeing youngsters taking pictures TikTok movies at a park or a mall has turn out to be a commonplace now and has even landed individuals in bother for making movies at their office. Such is the insanity round TikTok. There have been issues relating to privateness and unfold of distasteful content material, one thing that even led to a brief ban, the recognition of TikTok merely ceases to include. As for the movies shared on TikTok, properly, they’re a mixture of genuinely humorous and artistic to extraordinarily cringeworthy.

6. Digital assistants

Digital Assistants have existed for fairly a while, however latest developments have made them far more productive. With good residence gadgets like Amazon Echo, Google Residence, smartwatches, and earbuds turning into commonplace, AI assistants are discovering their manner in our houses and day-to-day life at a a lot sooner tempo. And because of the developments within the area of machine studying and large knowledge crunching, assistants are now not restricted to keyword-laden instructions that truly made customers sound robotic. However how smarter AI assistants bought this 12 months? This is an instance, Google Assistant now helps continued dialog, can filter spam calls, reply calls in your behalf, e book an appointment by speaking similar to a human, and do much more.

Asking a puck-sized speaker to play your jam from Spotify? Simply say so. TVs, automobiles, and wearables are among the many class of merchandise which have turn out to be smarter, due to digital assistants, and can proceed to enhance over time to come back. And with Google and Amazon opening their AI assistants to different corporations, the worth of good residence merchandise with digital assistants has drastically come down, and consequently, extra accessible. Help for extra Indian languages opened an entire new market avenue for digital assistants in India this 12 months. Market tendencies additionally recommend a formidable progress of digital assistant purposes at each private and industrial scale, whereas forecasts level to an enormous surge within the years to come back.

7. Electrical automobiles

Tesla nearly single-handedly introduced electrical automobiles to the forefront and made them stylish driving on high of the issues relating to the atmosphere. 2019 noticed almost all massive names within the trade asserting their respective EV plans, with many EVs making their approach to the market too. An enormous surge has been recorded within the uptake of electrical automobiles within the west. However what about India? Properly, electrical automobiles are nonetheless a distinct segment, however issues modified this 12 months. 2019 witnessed the launch of Hyundai Kona EV and Tata Tigor EV for shoppers in India. Audi, Jaguar, Nissan, and Renault are among the many different names which have promised to convey their electrical automobiles to India subsequent 12 months.

The Indian authorities additionally took a proactive method this 12 months, asserting incentives for proudly owning an EV, and can be giving an enormous push to the nascent electrical automobile trade in India. The transfer is commendable, and the shift in direction of a future with EVs has a number of benefits for shoppers and the world as an entire. However there are a number of challenges as properly, resembling a virtually non-existent charging infrastructure, bridging the supply-demand hole, limitations to grid capability, battery efficiency woes, price of possession, and above all, establishing a brand new client behaviour in direction of autos.

8. Deepfakes

Earlier than we talk about the impression of deepfakes this 12 months, let’s first get acquainted with what really it’s. Deepfakes can broadly be outlined as media, particularly movies, during which the actual particular person is changed by one other particular person’s digital avatar. Sounds spectacular? It certainly is. However in a world the place pretend information has turn out to be an enormous subject, deepfakes make the longer term look much more terrifying. Bear in mind the video during which comic Invoice Hader changed into Tom Cruise, the one the place Mark Zuckerberg was speaking frankly like an precise human being, or the one which noticed Jordan Peele ship a public service announcement as Barack Obama? Some say deepfakes will convey again deceased film stars, however that appears like a tiny constructive in opposition to a sea of ill-intentioned use case situations.

Deepfakes have superior to a stage that one can visually alter what an individual is saying in a video by simply typing just a few phrases. Actually, by simply substituting phrases. India was amazed by deepfakes as a lot as the remainder of the world, and native deepfakes (albeit of decrease high quality) have already made their manner on-line, with a key instance being pornographic content material that includes Indian celebs. The issue has even been acknowledged by India’s Electronics and Data Expertise Minister, Ravi Shankar Prasad, however the measures outlined by him to counter the menace are merely insufficient. In a rustic the place lies and deceit forwarded by WhatsApp can result in mob violence, and the place fact-checking as a follow is subsequent to nil, deepfakes will solely worsen the scenario and create havoc.

9. Fibre broadband rollout in India

Reliance Jio had disrupted the Indian telecom market when it arrived in 2016, and everybody was anticipating Jio Fiber to do the identical. Sadly, that did not occur, largely as a result of everybody was anticipating the corporate to supply rock-bottom costs. Jio Fiber plan costs turned out to be just like what different Web service suppliers (ISP) are at present offering, so the shoppers did not line as much as get the connections.

Though Jio Fiber is seemingly providing respectable service, its fibre roll out has been botched to say the least. There may be nonetheless no readability in precisely which places the Jio Fiber service is reside, and the purchasers do not hear again for weeks and months after placing their particulars within the on-line registrations.

Jio Fiber wasn’t the one supplier to wager massive on fibre in India this 12 months. Different main ISPs, together with ACT, Hathway, Airtel, and You Broadband, additionally expanded their protection and introduced freebies to entice shoppers to maneuver from slower broadband plans to sooner fibre connections.

10. Information privateness issues

With individuals spending an increasing number of time on-line and utilizing numerous providers that declare to make it simpler for them to do issues, knowledge privateness gave shoppers lots to fret about this 12 months. 2019 confirmed that it’s futile to hope that platforms will preserve our knowledge protected and personal. Information leaks, hacks, unprotected databases on random servers, and spying apps, together with from nation states, are an unlucky actuality of those tech-filled occasions, and the outlook simply appears so hopeless. Fortunately, after years of Fb’s knowledge privateness missteps, the large tech – Apple, Google, Microsoft, and Fb (sure, even Fb) – claims that it’s attempting more durable than ever to safeguard consumer knowledge. The likes of Apple and Microsoft even known as privateness a basic human proper. Possibly all is just not misplaced simply but, 2020 will present if massive tech can observe by way of.


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