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Trend Watch: What to Look for in Technology in 2012

By Dina Ferriero | Tuesday, December 27th, 2011

With the holiday season in full swing and the new year just around the corner, we find ourselves looking ahead at what 2012 has in store. With a number of new and enhanced technologies entering the marketplace in recent months – and many more expected in the near future – tech blogs are abuzz with anticipation for what is to come.

So, we took a look into our technology crystal ball and pulled together a list of some exciting trends to look for in 2012. Enjoy!

The “BYOD” Trend

The BYOD (“Bring Your Own Device”) movement started to gain traction in some organizations in 2011 and seems to be catching on. This trend, in which employees bring their personal smartphones or tablets into the workplace for business use, is gaining popularity as companies begin to adopt Apple and Android products more widely. In 2012, expect more discussions about how to best manage business applications and data on employees' personal mobile devices.

Cloud Discussions Focused on Security

Cloud computing was a leading topic of discussion in the investment technology world in 2011. As more and more firms become interested in reducing costs and reaping the other benefits associated with the cloud, adoption will surely continue to increase throughout the industry.

Now that most fund managers are familiar with the cloud at a high level, 2012 will be the year of diving deeper into this type of infrastructure, focusing in large part on cloud security and data protection. The Security Guidance for Critical Areas of Focus in Cloud Computing Guide, which was recently released by the Cloud Security Alliance (CSA), serves as a roadmap for managers seeking to gain a better understanding of the security considerations associated with the cloud paradigm.

The Tablet Takeover

While Apple’s iPad certainly paved the way for the rapidly growing tablet market, a number of other industry players have developed rival devices with comparable capabilities and features. Samsung’s Galaxy Tab, Amazon’s Kindle Fire, Sony’s Tablet S and Motorola’s Xoom are just a few of the recent market entrants who have helped to spur the tablet movement. With skyrocketing adoption rates, look for this technology to grow in popularity throughout 2012.

Mobile Payment

Smartphones have saturated the enterprise market over the past few years. In 2012, look for Near Field Communication (NFC) technology to enable smartphone users to make payments by simply waving their phones near a credit card reader at checkout stations in stores or taxis. By the end of the year, it is expected that one out of every five smartphones will be equipped with this technology.

Voice Control

When Apple introduced Siri on its iPhone 4S device earlier this year, it was the first tool of its kind to accurately understand human voice controls and take corresponding actions, such as sending an email, responding to a text message or creating calendar alerts. Expect several Apple competitors to come out with similar voice control applications in 2012. An important factor driving this trend: many city and state governments are implementing laws against texting while driving. Voice-controlled devices may prove even more valuable for users who spend a lot of time behind the wheel.

2012 will certainly be an exciting year in the world of enterprise technology. We look forward to sharing more innovative industry trends with you next year! 

Which of the above trends do you think will be the hottest in 2012?


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