Gartner identifies key emerging technologies spurring innovation
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Gartner identifies key emerging technologies spurring innovation

Gartner identifies key emerging technologies spurring innovation

NFT, quantum ML, generative AI, homomorphic encryption and composable applications and networks among key technologies to watch

Artificial Intelligence

On the Gartner hype cycle for emerging technologies, 2021, the three overarching trends that will drive organisations to explore emerging technologies such as nonfungible tokens (NFT), sovereign cloud, data fabric, generative AI, and composable networks to help secure competitive advantage are engineering trust, accelerating growth, and sculpting change.

“Technology innovation is a key enabler of competitive differentiation and is the catalyst for transforming many industries. Breakthrough technologies are continually appearing, challenging even the most innovative organisations to keep up,” said Brian Burke, research vice president at Gartner. “Leading organisations will lean on the emerging technologies in this year’s Hype Cycle to build trust and new growth opportunities against a background of continued strategic change and economic uncertainty.”

The hype cycle for emerging technologies is unique among most Gartner hype cycles because it distils insights from more than 1,500 technologies into a succinct set of “must know” emerging technologies and trends that show promise in delivering a high degree of competitive advantage over the next five to 10 years.

Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies, 2021
Hype cycle for emerging technologies, 2021

“As organisations continue their focus on digital business transformation, they must accelerate change and cut through the hype surrounding emerging technologies,” said Melissa Davis, research vice president at Gartner.

Three themes of emerging technology trends

Engineering trust: Trust demands security and reliability. However, it can also extend to building innovations as a resilient core and foundation for IT to deliver business value. This foundation must consist of engineered, repeatable, trusted, proven and scalable working practices and innovations.

The technologies to watch to engineer trust are sovereign cloud, NFT, machine-readable legislation, decentralised identity, decentralised finance, homomorphic encryption, active metadata management, data fabric, real-time incident centre and employee communications applications.

Accelerating growth: After the trusted core business is established, recovery and growth can happen. Organisations should balance technology risk with the appetite for business risk to ensure near-term objectives are attainable. Once the innovation-led core is scaling, accelerated growth extends delivery and value.

To accelerate growth, the following technologies should be explored: multiexperience, industry cloud, AI-driven innovation, quantum machine learning (ML), generative AI and digital humans.

Sculpting change: Change is traditionally disruptive and often is tied to chaos, but organisations can use innovations to sculpt change and bring order to chaos. The art is to anticipate and auto-tune to the needs of change.

Organisations looking to sculpt change should consider composable applications, composable networks, AI-augmented design, AI-augmented software engineering, physics-informed AI, influence engineering, digital platform conductor tools, named data networking and self-integrating applications.

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