I hope that 2023 works out better than I think it will, because it is the beginning of a new year. We are in a bit of trouble, but some amazing technologies are coming to market this year that I am looking forward to seeing.
There will be a lot of cool stuff coming out this year, and from the pre-briefings I have seen, there will definitely be some.
This week, let's look at a lot of that. I ran out of space in this column and will not have a Product of the Week next week.
The economy looks bad.
The last few years have not been great for a number of reasons. The supply chain was crippled by the shutdowns, and when people came back, they wanted to buy stuff, which made the government do terrible things to interest rates.
The chickens will come home to roost in 2023. There will be an inauspicious mix of buyers with no money but improved manufacturing capacity. I expect layoffs to accelerate.
Vendors should ramp up marketing to capture as much of the market as possible during this time. Most will ignore this Business 101 lesson and reduce demand generation, allowing those firms that did audit it to gain a significant share as a result, at the expense of those that cut marketing during this time.
I believe that in 2023 demand management should have both a carrot and a stick, with the carrot being high-interest rates on borrowing and the stick being savings rates. Changing perception is needed so that buying behavior can be mitigated.
Communicating effectively with citizens so that they modify their behavior timely would have a more significant and faster impact on this class of problem which is mainly behavior-based in the first place.
China will remain a problem because it is unwilling to ask for help and its Covid responses are failing. China's vaccines appear to be ineffectual but instead of seeking foreign vaccines that work, they struggle with being overwhelmed by sick people.
The domestic issues at home may distract from the war with Taiwan. The lack of vaccine effectiveness points to a bigger problem in China and many other countries, the tendency to cover up issues rather than address them. China's military may not be able to perform as well as the Chinese leadership expects.
While the dynamics of war with Taiwan may seem very different from the one in Ukraine, covering up problems is consistent between Russia and China, potentially creating a similar stalemate between the countries. While the conflict continues, manufacturing in Taiwan and exports from China will crater and likely create a bigger supply chain problem.
#The chips are made from artificial intelligence.
Most programs, like the CHIPS Act, won't mature until closer to 2025, leaving us exposed in 2023. After the war in Ukraine ends, the country will not be able to recover its manufacturing capacity. Since that has not happened, there will likely continue to be shortages ofASIC chips, which are a critical part of most electronics, including cars.
The cars are electric.
The year of 2023 will see electric charging capabilities increase dramatically, and we will begin to see the second- generation battery and engine technology hit the market with increased range and performance. We will not be able to make electric cars a proper replacement for gas vehicles when it comes to distance.
Next-generation electric cars and more enhancements to driver assistance and in-car entertainment capabilities will be released. The most significant changes will likely occur in the year 2024 for the new line of cars.
The last year of current generation electrics and the beginning of the next generation of electric cars will be in 2023 and 2024, respectively.
I would prefer buying used instead of new in the years to come because of the changes to the model year releases. The exception would be cars from vendors like Rivian and Lucid, which are already creating cars we could term next generation.
Personal flying vehicles.
There will be a lot of electric flying personal recreational vehicles on the market. Some of these have already arrived.
They use technology scaled up to fly humans, resulting in some relatively easy builds and virtually no skills needed for a recreational flying license. I am sure that with the new vehicles, we will get more complaints about people flying over houses.
They look like a lot of fun. I am tempted to pick one up myself as a toy that would work both in summer and winter, assuming I can handle the cold. Don't run out of electricity at altitude.
Throughout the year, PCs will undergo screen modifications. Several announcements recently teased Rolling screens.
The idea of being able to magically extend your screen vertically or horizontally (doing both at the same time is beyond us now) could be a game-changing idea for those of us who suffer from screen envy with current laptops.
Expect more efficient chargers, a greater focus on sustainable practices, and a continued effort to find that sweet spot for PCs as a service.
The industry is going through a soft sales period due to the massive overbuying that occurred during the last several years, so look for advancement in recycling and customization this year.
There are Smartphones.
I will talk about a new Apple iPhone contender when it launches.
Rollable displays are expected to show up before the end of the year, as well as improvements in camera software that will make you look better, and help you create better-looking avatars to come with the latest phones.
We should see the first look at the next generation of digital assistants before the end of the year.
We should see the benefits of conversational artificial intelligence across most platforms next year.
Premium line phones will have wireless charging enhancements as the year progresses.
Video conference and collaboration.
The segment was messed up by the confusion surrounding whether people will stay home or return to the office.
Some of the solutions will be focused on improving the experience in large rooms and others in the home.
Better camera tracking with cameras, better noise isolation with microphones and speakers, and stronger audience monitoring tools will likely get those playing video games in trouble.
The camera placement problem with built-in and aftermarket cameras is likely to be solved by a vendor.
#metaverse is a mess.
The metaverse is a mess because of Meta's initial implementation. The metaverse will have the ability to convey a vision of the future better than any prior technology once it matures.
#This has been done by Nvidia.
It is possible that Meta will figure this out and begin to showcase what it will be. This is something that has been done for some time in the commercial space, but it isn't yet touching most of us.
Artificial intelligence and robotic devices.
Artificial intelligence and robotic technology will be a big part of the year. This year will be the year when personal robotic technology expands beyond the initial wave of the robotic vacuum cleaner.
I expect robotic security solutions, robotic snow blowers, and even more robotic personal assistants. The first realistic prototypes of automated fast-food restaurants will also be seen.
We should have a better idea of where this technology is going and how quickly it will overwhelm us with robotic choices by the end of the decade.
The health care industry will see a huge increase in the use of artificial intelligence. Artificial intelligence will be more widely used to create new remedies and cures, and to give patients an easier way to get help. I just got over the flu and am looking forward to this medical improvement.
The emergence of 8K TVs will be the true emergence, and we will see more affordable rollable display TVs in limited runs. We have had prototypes of 8K and rollable TVs before. Both technologies are moving into production and will be available at the high end.
The improvement in upscales will reduce the problem with 8Ks compared to the 4K TVs that preceded them. The sets will garner a lot of attention, but sales will likely be hampered by cost until prices become more reasonable. At the end of the year, it is possible that at least one of these two technologies will go mainstream.
I think it will be the year when 8K and rollable display TVs show their potential. It will take a long time to get to a critical mass of content and rollable screen manufacturing capacity to provide the convergence of technology and content as a value to the buyer.
It was wrapping up.
These predictions are not complete. I didn't mention the pivot from air to rail travel in Europe that will accelerate next year, the potential failure of Twitter due to Musk's bad choice for a new CEO, or advances in both broadcast power and microgrids. I think fusion power will wait until the second half of the decade to move into broad trials.
I think that it will be difficult for companies that don't understand what market they are in or pull back too hard on demand generation funding to compete in the future.
Think of the year as if it were musical chairs with money. Firms that don't fight for every penny will likely fail, as there will be a smaller pool of available spending dollars.
I wish you and yours good fortune in the new year, though it may be difficult for most of the year.