All over the world, children are writing "hoverboard" and "drone" on their holiday wish list. Why? Because they can.
Technology has made huge leaps and bounds this past year, and there's no sign of a tech slow-down. Aspects of our day-to-day lives are constantly evolving and improving thanks to new technologies and innovations. You can't help but wonder what 2016 has in store for us.
Here are 14 exciting technology trend predictions entrepreneurs have for the new year:
1. There Will Be Uber for Everything
I can see a lot of new Uber-like brands launching in 2016. Uber is a time-saving concept, and there are virtually unlimited applications: dry cleaning, housekeeping, personal delivery services, etc. I think we will see everything you can "Uber" come to market this coming year. As more people realize their time is the most valuable asset, these type of services will thrive.--Jonathan Long, Market Domination Media
2. There Will Be a Stronger Focus on Consumer Privacy and Data Security
2015 was a year where important security and privacy concerns began to bubble to the surface. We saw the data breach that leaked vital and private information of 21.5 million federal workers and the Ashley Madison hack. But, in 2016, I believe significantly more consumers will tangibly experience how these data leaks impact their privacy and personal security.--Nick Reese, BroadbandNow
3. There Will Be a Vertical Content Boom
Driven by Snapchat's rigid desire and user feedback, 2016 will see a huge opportunity for vertical content. Almost no existing content is suitable for vertical, so there will be an enormous opportunity to reinvent the entertainment and marketing world, all because of smartphone technology. It's not as sexy as drones, IoT, or biotech, but it will have the greatest impact on the average daily life.--Nicholas Haase, Loot!
4. Live Events Will Integrate Euphoric Wearable Tech
Sporting events, concerts, and more will utilize wearable tech that illuminate in coordination with the event production, to increase the value of in-person attendance. This tech also collects meaningful data from those who wear it that can be used by sponsors, venues, or talent to intelligently retarget their consumers.--Faithe Parker, Marbaloo Marketing
5. Web Tools and API Integration Will Become Mainstream
Everything is interconnected. As a Web-based software developer, we get so many requests for integration between different types of solutions such as inventory systems, CRMs, and accounting systems. The most efficient way to integrate is by using APIs. We have even been developing APIs for small businesses. My prediction is that integration and web tools through APIs will become mainstream in 2016.--Duran Inci, Optimum7
6. Small Businesses Will Be Able to Access Big Data
Big data has historically been limited to the realm of large enterprises who could afford them. Now, with InsightSquared, SiSense, and more recently, Salesforce's Wave Analytics, these big data tools are becoming increasingly accessible, often at a reasonable monthly cost. The power of business intelligence tools will soon be realized by small businesses across the world.--David Ciccarelli, Voices.com
7. There Will Be Less Tolerance for IP Infringements
Digital piracy has transformed many industries. Intellectual Property infringements have become less tolerable, and the final pillars of piracy are probably going to begin being removed as more and more stakeholders band together to try and protect their bottom line. Pay-TV companies and ISPs will cooperate, and users in contravention of said terms of service may begin being prosecuted for their infractions.--Cody McLain, SupportNinja
8. Website Personalization Technology Will Become More Mainstream
Tools like Optimizely Personalization will allow any website owner to set up custom visitor segments based on their traffic source or activity on the website, then change the website content to be more relevant. However, there are also well-known problems with over-segmentation.--Chris Goward, WiderFunnel
9. Social Networks Will Integrate the "Buy" Button
Without a doubt you'll see Twitter, Facebook and others integrate the social "buy" button where we used to "heart" or "favorite" a posting or tweet. In less than two taps we'll be buying our goods, and it's going to be hot.--George Morris, The FRAMEWORK
10. There Will Be Uber Package Delivery
Amazon will either buy a gas station company or partner with Uber/Lyft to get drivers to deliver packages. This will improve their distribution and keep them from having to use the costly package carriers, like UPS and FedEx.--Brian David Crane, Caller Smart Inc.
11. Interactive Content Will Rise
In "Content Marketing Comes of Age," Gartner said: "The exuberance around content marketing has given way to a more pragmatic, outcome-oriented view." Their recommendations included bringing content "to life with interactive content elements." I predict that interactive content will be the top new investment for marketers in 2016 as traditional marketing content continues to become less effective.--Simon Berg, Ceros
12. FTC Will Become More Involved in Ad Products
Things are starting to bubble up in the ad product landscape around disclosure, and the FTC will get more strict in making sites state more explicitly what content is paid for and what isn't. This is across the board in affiliate, in-stream display, sponsored content, and influencer marketing. Media sites will no longer be able to disguise paid placement alongside native content.--Fan Bi, Blank Label
13. Use of Graph Databases Will Increase
Information technology professionals build platforms that collect vast amounts of data, but leave it in data repositories without leveraging its full potential. Graph analysis is among the hottest techniques for making sense of large datasets, thus making graph databases the hot technology of big data for 2016. Some estimate that over 25 percent of enterprises will use graph databases by 2017.--Eric Mathews, Start Co.
14. We Will See a Rise in Artificial Intelligence
Artificial Intelligence will dominate the technology landscape in 2016. We're going to see many interesting developments with AI, especially with the recent news of Google open sourcing its Artificial Intelligence engine. With this access, smart people across many industries will realize how they can utilize AI, revolutionizing how companies learn, operate, and adapt to better serve their customers.--Brock Stechman, DivvyHQ
These are the top results from a survey of entrepreneurs on the topic of technology predictions for 2016 provided by the Young Entrepreneur Council (YEC), an invite-only organization comprised of the world's most promising young entrepreneurs. In partnership with Citi, YEC recently launched BusinessCollective, a free virtual mentorship program that helps millions of entrepreneurs start and grow businesses.