lundi 13 janvier 2014

5 Trends for 2014: the Year of the Sensor

What's changing in 2014? What do we feel is coming? An educated guess.
  • Sensors of all kinds are making things smart and producing lots of data
    • Wearables: bracelets or earbuds and even shirts automatically collect biometric data about us: quantified self, personal analytics. Fitness tracking is the major trend. Watches are popular but, for the time being, they are mostly repeating smartphone app notifications and they are not yet quite smart enough. Then there are also gadgets like toothbrushes, sensors to monitor newborns, to correct posture (against slouching), etc.
    • The wearables are often linked to personal health: they monitor sleep time, heart rate, weight, breathing, calories, footsteps. They send notifications about sunlight, air pollution, noise, temperature; it is like an intimate weather channel. 
    • With the Internet of things (home, car automation) sensors take command; with domotics, it is as if things of our house, the everyday things of our lives, were coming alive.
  •  Local advertising is still under-used: there is a high potential of advertising growth
    • Geo-targeting and location analytics are becoming more precise; micro-location even allows for spacial retargeting and mobile location panels. 
    • Now the store can track visitors - and not just customers - to learn about foot traffic in the aisle, attention to products, dwelling time... Since the store knows and recognizes you when you enter or just pass by, it might show its loyalty by sending you coupons, discounts, etc.
    • Digital e-commerce (e-tail) meets physical retail to synthesize in-store and out-of-store marketing : eBeacon, Presence Zone, etc. Sensors again.
    • DOOH is the new major local media, working in networks, national and local to build branding. Smart screens in venues, transportation, stores, malls, stadiums, multiplexes. New pools of data thanks to sensors. 
  • Disenchantment with the Web (Entzauberung). The Web has an image problem. The magic is almost gone and there is growing disappointment, a distrust of big imperialistic companies, flirting with spying, demonstrating arrogant behaviors such as disrespecting privacy or pillaging private data. These companies create a growing concern among users with regard to privacy and data leaks.
    • In many countries, and especially in Europe, people - and governments - are shocked to learn that major digital, meta media American companies do not pay taxes in Europe - or so little in comparison with their enormous advertising revenues.
    • Social networks and social messaging may be wearing out their welcome.
    • The GRP is back. Measurement and analytics are all over the advertising place; many panels compete to tell the truth about audience, engagement, reach...  Confronted with such disorder, the market will end up promoting a conservative order for assessing branding: the GRP.
    • Education "and its discontents" (Unbehagen). Education in schools and universities seems in dear trouble. It is in the front ranks facing digital change, and the so-called "destruction" has not been very "creative"... yet. Massive Open Online Courses (MOOC) are only a small part of the solution.
      • What is a textbook nowadays? What is homework? How should we teach in the digital context? How long should a class be? Should there be classes? Is teaching a full-time job? How to adapt university architecture to digital learning? Nothing should be taken for granted anymore... change is necessary.
      • Generally, universities are poorly equipped, they cannot adapt quickly enough to technological change. Students, as well as those who teach, feel this, experience it every single day. Parents suspect it. Not much is done. When will this be taken seriously?

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