Making predictions in the high-tech world is a thankless task. The situation can change very quickly. One research, technical development, or even a new law can create a whole line of devices that never existed before. Nevertheless, here are 10 technologies that are likely to become trends in 2015.
1. Mobile payments
Mobile payment systems, in which the credit card can be replaced by a smartphone, is expected to become more popular in 2015. Apple Pay and other competing services like CurrentC will give a tangible boost in this area.
With the help of mobile payment systems, we will be able to make purchases much faster. There will also be no need to use a credit card. The downside to the technology is that it opens up a new sector for hackers and fraudsters.
2. Ensuring confidentiality
Mobile payment services like Apple Pay make payments using NFC contactless technology. Such operations are vulnerable to hackers who can only steal information when they are nearby.
In response to this, various types of stealth clothing and accessories have already appeared on the market, which will become even more widespread in 2015. In addition to wallets that block RFID for credit cards, jackets, bags and even jeans designed to block wireless signals have already begun to appear.
3. Virtual reality
The highly anticipated Oculus Rift virtual reality headset will go on sale in 2015 and is expected to bring with it a whole new wave of virtual reality technologies and applications.
Oculus already has a real competitor from Sony - Project Morpheus. The prospect of a truly viable virtual reality headset is coming true. Several filmmakers have already promised to add VR support to their new films.
4. Internet of Things
The Internet of Things is a new wave of modern devices that connect to the network. And we are not talking about computers and smartphones, but about all the other things around us.
Already existing examples of such devices are household appliances, such as a refrigerator, which can be controlled by a smartphone. Such a refrigerator will be able to independently inform you that some products are running out and you need to buy them. Also, the Internet of Things is at the heart of future transport systems consisting of automated urban transport.
5. Real-time speech translation
In December last year, Skype introduced the first version of its real-time conversation translation system. As a demonstration, a video was shown in which students from the United States and Mexico spoke freely to each other, each in their own language.
Skype says it hopes to roll out support for additional languages in 2015. This will be a big breakthrough in speech recognition and machine learning technologies. A real hit will be a smartphone app that instantly translates your own voice.
6. Artificial Intelligence
Stephen Hawking and science fiction films have warned us about the dangers of artificial intelligence more than once. But this will not force researchers to change their plans for 2015. Artificial intelligence continues to be one of the hottest topics among new technologies.
For example, Watson, an artificial intelligence from IBM, has been working in medical research for several years. Such systems can speed up the processing and research of medical data dozens of times. In 2015, IBM hopes to teach Watson to understand natural languages and use him in several scientific directions.
7. Cars with autopilot
Promises of self-driving cars have been heard for several years. But it is in 2015 that we can see real results right on the streets.
Truly self-driving vehicles still pose many technological and regulatory challenges, but many semi-automatic autopilot technologies are expected to hit the consumer market this year.
One of the first may be Google's prototypes, which are already ready for testing on city streets. Volvo is also trying to stay in trend, demonstrating adaptive cruise control on the new XC90 SUVs. The system automatically maintains a predetermined distance to the vehicle in front and can assist the driver when parking.
8. Flexible Displays
The idea of flexible screens that can bend, curl, and even roll like a newspaper is another fantastic technology that has been haunting us for a long time. The first functional prototypes began to be created back in the 1970s.
But we may see a major shift in this direction in 2015, when big companies like LG and Samsung continue to develop thinnest paper-thin OLED panels.
9. Network Security
The level of online threats is growing every day. As a result, the expected surge in new devices and services that will help protect users' money and information on the Internet.
This year we will see further improvements in biometric authentication, credit cards that use quantum physics for encryption, and a large number of services to prevent identity theft.
10. Drones everywhere
Drones and drones will make headlines in 2015 due to their potential usefulness in hundreds of industries. More than 167 applications for commercial projects involving drones have been filed so far, according to the US Federal Aviation Administration, with over a hundred more pending in 2015.
Amazon continues to relentlessly test its unmanned package delivery system, insurance companies plan to use drones to conduct inspections, and industrial corporations want to control facilities with their help. Artists and filmmakers are finding new uses for unmanned aerial vehicles. Very soon there will be no overcrowding in the sky.