Gartner Trends for 2014: BYOD, Smart Machines and More

Recently Gartner identified its top 10 strategic technology trends for 2014, and we wanted to share some of the highlights.

Mobile Trends in 2014

Gartner predicts that the Bring-Your-Own-Device trend will result in the doubling or tripling of the mobile workforce. To be prepared for this surge in device diversity and quantity, Gartner suggests that enterprises set policies to define the limits of BYOD.

Gartner also predicts that apps will continue to grow while applications will continue to shrink. They suggest that developers look for ways to connect different apps on different types of devices into larger applications. They note that IT departments should be prepared to use several different tools to create their apps, as no single tool is likely to be optimal for at least a few more years.

The Internet of Everything

Different from the “internet of things”? Sort of. The internet of “everything” refers to a world of data streams and services created through the digitization of people, things, information and places. They note that enterprises should explore applying four basic usage models (manage, monetize, operate, extend) to each of these 4 “internets” (people, things, information, places). Gartner suggests that most enterprises and technology vendors have yet to leverage the opportunities presented by this expanded concept of the internet.

Lots of Clouds on the Horizon

Gartner suggests that enterprises should “design private cloud services with a hybrid future in mind.” They indicate that early hybrid cloud services will provide integration between internal private clouds and external public clouds to support certain new functionality and services.

Gartner also notes that the era of the personal cloud is upon us. This shift will continue the trend away from devices and towards services. Gartner claims that many devices will be used under this model, with no one device acting as the central hub of information.

IT Trends in 2014

Software Defined Anything (SDx) is “a collective term that encapsulates the growing market momentum for improved standards for infrastructure programmability and data center interoperability driven by automation inherent to cloud computing, DevOps and fast infrastructure provisioning.” Gartner suggests this trend will result in emerging standards and bridging capabilities, but they also note that there will be resistance from vendors who risk losing margins by opening up competitive opportunity through supporting interoperability standards.

Web-Scale IT describes the emulation of the capabilities of large cloud service providers within an enterprise IT setting. Gartner notes that cloud providers such as Amazon, Google, and Facebook are re-inventing IT, and they suggest that enterprises should emulate the architectures, processes and practices created by these leaders.

Smart Machines and 3D Printing

Gartner predicts that through 2020, we will see a blossoming of the smart machine era. Gartner suggests that contextually aware intelligent personal assistants, smart advisors (think IBM Watson), advanced global industrial systems and public availability of autonomous vehicles are right on the horizon. They claim that this will be the most disruptive trend in the history of IT.

Gartner also predicts that 3D printer shipments will grow by 75% in 2014, followed by a near doubling of shipments again in 2015. Gartner suggests that the consumer market hype surrounding 3D printing is serving to inform enterprises of the cost-effective and viable opportunities presented by 3D printing technology.

Want all the details? Check out Gartners report.