As per the definition, globalization is the process through which industries and other organizations develop international impact or start functioning on an international scale. The internet transformed this world into a virtual world where everyone is on the same page, regardless of time zones and socioeconomic standards. But if you think beyond the internet, what actually brings the world together is built-in human nature – the urge to share information.
The internet played a vital role in bringing information technology to our fingertips. From home appliances to phones and wrist watches, everything is smart. In due course, the internet’s seed also gave rise to social media, where every individual could share information, pictures, and ideas.
Social media is not just a tool anymore; it is an all-inclusive entity dictating market trends. While Facebook and Twitter gave voice to people primarily through words, YouTube gave identity by featuring videos. Instagram remains the planet of pictures, and LinkedIn introduced online CVs and the ability to professionally network online. Social media has altered the trends in almost every market.
Since the arrival of the internet, it has smashed communication barriers beyond what was previously imaginable. News of any kind is just a single click away. In fact, you don’t even need to click if you already have push notifications enabled. In addition, even spectrum internet has wide area serving internet.
By 2026, it is predicted that 55 million Americans will be working as freelancers/working remotely. South Africans may have lower cost of living, but they can now participate in the same freelance opportunities across the world, thanks to services like Charter internet. If one million South African inhabitants tap into the international opportunities available, the economic situation would transform extensively.
What is going to strengthen this digital transformation, and how? Here is a list of tools which are strengthening digital transformation.
According to the latest statistics, social media networking sites have around 845 billion users altogether. On average, a regular smartphone user occupies one out of every five minutes on a social networking site, predominantly Facebook, as it has the highest number of users, and is commonly perceived as the best platform. In a poll of social media experts, 85% of people utilize it for business networking. 36% of people use social media as a reliable customer support system. However, only 35% of small business owners invest in social media. On the flipside, 85% of real estate professionals use social media.
Internet of Things – IoT
According to Gartner researchers, around 8.4 billion “things” are connected to the internet these days. 30% of those things have been connected only within the last year, meaning this is just the beginning for the Internet of Things. It should be said that the IoT isn’t so much about the “things,” as it is more to do with how these things are applied. The main three trends predicted by experts are the analytics revolution, edge computing, and 5G cell processing, all of which couldn’t exist without the IoT. In fact, it has also been predicted that around 40% of all computing will take place at the edge in a couple of years.
The same way the IoT will force data to the edge, it is going to force mobile providers to move faster than ever before in the direction of 5G. The level of hyper-connectivity anticipated by internet users nowadays means there’s really no reason not to move forward on the 5G route. That said, the transfer to 5G is not going to take place overnight. Be patient, as it is expected to be patchy all the way through next year.
At this moment, we are seeing Gigabit LTE, which is considered to be a stepping stone between LTE and 5G. The stepping stones will eventually turn into hops, with devices from Samsung and Sony leading the way. Currently, the majority of the Gigabit LTE movement is powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon technology. Nonetheless, others will definitely try to grow into this speedy growth market for smartphones.
While Bitcoin is blowing away stock market analysts, its cousin blockchain is predicted to finally make its mark in 2018. Some studies revealed that until February of this year, blockchain was the second fastest growing search term, growing at a rate of 400% in the span of 12 months. For experts, this was no surprise.
The first industry to get the benefit of this incredible tool will likely be the financial services industry. It will likely be followed by just about everyone, from healthcare to entertainment to hospitality. The transition to blockchain will also not happen overnight, but around 20% of international trades will be using it by 2020.
Artificial Intelligence – AI
As the majority of us are familiar with Alexa, Siri, and customer service chatbots, it comes off as no surprise that AI might soon begin to sound like old hat. But when it comes to business, there is plenty of power still left in AI to be explored which can cater to all departments, starting from customer service and robotics to analytics and marketing.
Companies are still going to make the best out of artificial intelligence to surprise, connect, and interact with their customers in some unusual ways they may not even comprehend. This includes faster and cheaper automation of several mechanisms, from emails and content generation to industrial manufacturing. Even though the AI trend started a while ago, applications like IBM Watson, SAP Leonardo, and Salesforce Einstein suggest there is much more to come.
The Bottom Line: Digital Transformation Is Mandatory
If companies do not match with the pace of this speedy digital transformation in the coming years, it will be hard for them to survive, due to the competition and rapid technological advancements.
Although digital transformation perhaps once had been heard as a slogan in several boardrooms, it is no longer just a joke or a buzzword. It’s an overwhelming trend, and the commotion is likely to remain constant at least for the next couple of years. Companies who are incapable to adapt will rapidly fall to the bottom of the pack.
One thing about digital transformation which is perfectly clear is that the aforementioned technologies are working collectively to drive one another, producing an era of transformation that just cannot be resisted. The companies that will succeed and live on effortlessly in 2018 will be the ones that learn to stand by the trends.