The year 2021 marked a period when global economies began picking up the pieces following the COVID-19 pandemic that left them crippled and ravaged. Notwithstanding the setbacks, the tech sector extended its gains from 2020 and remains poised to go from strength to strength.
Here's a look at the dominant tech themes that could play out in 2022, based on the list put together by management consultancy firm Deloitte's "Tech Trends" team:
1. Data Sharing Made Easy: A host of new technologies promise simplification of the mechanics of data sharing across and between organizations, the report said. The ability to share secured data with others within an ecosystem or value chain is giving rise to new business models and products, it added.
The firm said it expects more organizations to engage in "data collaboration" to tackle common challenges.
Potential Beneficiaries: Box Inc BOX, Dropbox Inc DBX, Microsoft Corporation MSFT and Alphabet Inc GOOGL GOOG.
2. Cloud Going Vertical: A vertical cloud is a set of cloud computing services optimized for use in a particular industry, or for a specific business model.
Many organizations are seeking to become nimbler and more efficient by offloading business processes to the cloud, the firm said. In response, cloud giants, software vendors and systems integrators are developing an array of cloud-based solutions, accelerators and APIs that are preconfigured to support common use cases within industry verticals, it added.
The firm noted that hyperscalers and SaaS vendors are working with global system integrators and clients to provide modularized, vertical-specific business services and accelerators that can be easily adopted and built upon for unique differentiation.
Potential Beneficiaries: Amazon, Inc. AMZN, Microsoft and Alphabet.
3. Blockchains Ready For Business: Cryptocurrencies and non-fungible tokens, along with other blockchain and distributed ledger technologies, are finding their way into enterprises, the report said.
Blockchain and DLT tech, according to the report, is fundamentally changing the nature of doing business across organizational boundaries and helping companies reimagine how they make and manage "identity, data brand, provenance, professional certifications, copyrights and other tangible and digital assets."
The promise of safer, more efficient transactions has prompted the financial services industry to leverage blockchain and other DLT platforms, Deloitte said. The benefits extend to use cases in which multiple organizations access and share the same data and need visibility into transaction history, it added.
Potential Beneficiaries: BIT Mining Ltd. - ADR BTCM, BLOK Technologies BLPFF, Block Inc SQ, PayPal Holdings Inc PYPL, Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. AMD, NVIDIA Corporation NVDA and Bit Digital, Inc. BTBT.
4. IT Disruption — Automating At Scale: Radical redesigning of IT organizations is underway, with companies identifying repetitive manual processes and applying a combination of engineering, automation and self-service, Deloitte said. This kind of disruptive automation represents a "vast yet underrealized opportunity," the firm noted.
More broadly, automation's possibilities extend to areas such as development, deployment, maintenance and security, making it possible to gain efficiency and consistency, it added.
Potential Beneficiaries: Azenta Inc AZTA, Teradyne, Inc. TER, Cognex Corporation CGNX and Rockwell Automation ROK.
5. Cyber AI: Against the backdrop of abounding cyberattacks, Cyber AI can come in handy, not only to respond faster than attackers can move but also to anticipate moves and act in advance, the report said.
AI, the firm said, can be expanded beyond established applications, and used for accelerating data analysis, identifying anomalies and detecting threats.
Potential Beneficiaries: Check Point Software Technologies Ltd. CHKP, Fortinet Inc FTNT and CrowdStrike Holdings Inc CRWD.
6. Tech Stack Going Physical: With the explosion of smart devices and the increase in automation of physical tasks, CIOs now need to consider how to onboard, manage, maintain and secure business-critical assets such as smart factory equipment, inspection drones, health monitors, etc., Deloitte said.
A fresh approach to device governance and oversight may be needed to manage unfamiliar standards, regulatory bodies, and liability and ethics concerns, the firm added.
Potential Beneficiaries: AeroVironment, Inc. AVAV, Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. KTOS, General Electric Company GE and Honeywell International Inc. HON.
7. Quantum, Exponential Intelligence And Ambient Experience: Among technology possibilities that currently appear small on the horizon, but could turn out to be notable, are quantum technologies, exponential intelligence and ambient computing, Deloitte said.
Quantum technologies, the firm noted, are poised to transform computing, sensing and communications within the next decade, and exponential intelligence is the next-gen AI technology that would help understand human emotion and intent.
Ambient computing will make technology ubiquitous in work and home environments, it added.
Potential Beneficiaries: Alphabet, Accenture Plc ACN, Nvidia, Meta Platforms, Inc. FB and Apple Inc. AAPL.
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