The Internet of things became the main trend in 2016. Despite tremendous progress in the manufacturing and industrial sectors, one of the significant changes over the past year has been the increasing role of consumer IoT devices. This probably contributed to an unexpected increase in noise around the connected devices and how they could affect our lives. In 2017, this trend will continue.
Here are five of the most revolutionary predictions for 2017 for Internet of Things.
Tests of unmanned vehicles on public roads
In 2016, the world began testing unmanned vehicles, starting from buses in Finland, ending with a taxi in Singapore. However, in all cases, the driver was in the car, ready to take control at any time. For example, in the tests of Uber in Pittsburgh, drivers had to drive a car while passing through bridges and dangerous intersections.
2017 will be the next stage in the development and testing of unmanned vehicles. Some government organizations are already allowing companies to test fully autonomous vehicles on public roads without a backup driver. This will move forward one step further to the future when vehicles generally will not have a human driver. It is not known exactly in which cities such tests conducted. Also, it is quite possible that some localities will take the initiative to become the center of unmanned transport development.
Apple and Samsung will release their intelligent home “smart speakers.” Only in the US 10 million devices will be sold
Amazon Echo was one of the best-selling devices in 2016. Its competitor, Google Home, is already present on the market. Apple and Samsung are developing their dynamics with artificial intelligence. In 2017, we will see how the world’s leading smartphone manufacturers will enter the smart home speaker market. The output of these two major market participants stimulates the hype around the intellectual speakers, resulting in increased interest in the product, sales development and special offers, which are predicted to lead to the sale of 10 million devices in 2017.
Hackers will use unprotected IoT devices in another mass cyber attack
In October 2016, hackers conducted a major DDoS attack on the DNS provider Dyn, using thousands of infected connected devices to disrupt the company’s servers. In the following weeks, there were very many reactions regarding the state of Internet of Things, from calm to hysterical.
While many companies are taking active steps to protect against hacker attacks, tens of thousands of devices connected to the Internet, but potentially vulnerable and available to attacks like the October one, still exist around the world. It is possible that the world will see another serious hacking attack conducted using unprotected IoT devices. It is impossible to predict who will be the target of the attack and whether the potential damage will exceed the one that occurred as a result of breaking Dyn. But in 2017, we will see another attack, which will continue to pressure the IoT and entail a wave of discussions on the issue of security regulation.
5G will begin active spreading in 2017
In the past, the introduction of new cellular network technologies, including LTE, HSPA, and 3G, has usually occurred with delays and failures. Specialists associate them with technical specifications, as well as with political disputes over the wireless spectrum. With 5G, such delays are unlikely. All the signs indicate the timely deployment of the network with minimal difficulties, starting in 2017. Qualcomm, the largest manufacturer of mobile chips in the world, has already announced a modem supporting 5G networks.
We expect that the initial deployment of the 5G network will occur in South Korea and some parts of the US, most likely in Texas and California. Of course, full availability for consumers will take some time, but 2017 will be the beginning of its active birth.
IoT and automation will be a convenient terrifying thing for populist politicians
Populist politicians – from Donald Trump to Nigel Faraj – showed concern about the disappearance of many once-lucrative activities. Their primary focus was on trade and immigration. In 2017, IOT and automation are likely to attract their attention.
For example, the opening of a new factory Adidas in Atlanta. The plant is designed to reduce the production chain of clothing manufacturers, moving production closer to consumers. Instead of attracting local workers, Adidas will use robots.
Representatives of the highest echelons of power are unlikely to speak. Mostly, they will be less authoritative figures, striving to make their names on the growing populist sentiments using Internet of Things for political purposes. It is unlikely that these intrigues will have a big impact on the IoT trend and industrial automation, but may cause undesirable political interest in these technologies.
Meeting expectations of your customers have always been essential for running a successful business online. But unfortunately, succeeding in it is not always an easy task. If you want to achieve maximum results and stay on top, you have to get the right set of tools. That is quite a tedious task to choose from the large variety of plugins and extensions. We are going to show you how to pick the best option for you among 10 OpenCart extensions. They will help you increase your customer satisfaction and, o course, sales.
Here is the list of the top modules in industry:
This OpenCart module is a lightweight widget that extends the default sorting mechanism of the platform. It helps you to improve the organization options on the Manufacturer, Category, Special and Search pages. That will give your clients more flexible and versatile option for sorting. Also, it would provide them with better service, so they will find what they are looking for much quicker. Therefore it will make them more satisfied with the time shopping at your store.
In the online stores, the importance of the search engine rankings is extraordinarily high, and we all should be aware of that. SEO means Search Engine Optimization, and that is a time-consuming and constant process that requires more sophisticated and expert development skills. PackPro module is an OpenCart extension. It covers all of the needs of the Onsite SEO optimization and has all of the functionality in an intuitive and simple widget that you could easily install on your store. With just a few clicks, you can create meta descriptions and titles, SecureSEO keyword, rich snippets, alt tags and so on. Besides, you will have full multi-language SEO support.
Real life examples are the best commercial for your products because people always want to know how they perform. Give your clients and customers to add or tag photos of how they use your goods. When you have products in action, with customer photos uploaded you have a strong marketing point to other potential clients. People tend to buy more when they see others using those products. In this module, you can easy-moderate photos and display them in product tab. It has a top-notch architecture and no overridden files.
You should be in touch with your customers if you want to provide them with perfect service and make your business grow. Responding to your client is always a good thing. А live communication channel would help you to raise your customer’s trust and general picture of your brand in the market. The main component of this process is adding live chat to your online shop. ZopimLiveChat is one of the most popular platforms out there. It can easily integrate with your existing website because it is supporting a variety of eCommerce platforms. Also, it offers quite flexible price plans (includes a free one).
That is one of the world’s major social insights and content sharing and platform. It helps you to optimise your marketing because it allows your customers to share your content on social media easily. iSenseLabs performance allows a seamless OpenCart AddThis integration. That gives your customers an opportunity to enjoy all AddThis benefits at no cost. Just take a seat and enjoy the growth of your business as information spreads.
Customer’s safety and showing that you protect the data they share is one of the vocal points that will rise above most of the online shops. The Trustmark of McAfee Secure helps work out this problem by letting all visitors see that your website is safe. It can help you to rise to 500 visitors per month, totally free.
Don’t lose clients just because some of your goods have run out of stock. NotifyWhenAvailable module will help you to improve your customer’s trust in your store and will attract them. It offers an easy way to subscribe to store updates and be aware of products they are interested.
SmartNotifications is exclusively marketing oriented plugin. It will help you increase your incomes and sales to a new level. The plugin features a large selection of options including different show animations, triggering events, positioning and so on. It will make your work with customers easier than ever.
Ajax Quick Checkout
This module is an important extension that will renovate your store’s checkout page. It is a product of the Ajax web technology, so it’s highly customizable. This checkout module will provide your clients with a reliable and fast way to complete their orders.
It offers unique admin interface and selection of options to help you to return those who are trying to go away from your shop. You can create as many pop-ups as you want, customise them to fit entirely to your site. Also, there is a possibility of enabling pop-ups on all of the pages or specific URLs on your website. All of that is up to you. DiscountOnLeave is the right tool for it.
We expect that those plugins would improve your website performance and provide your clients with exceptional service and shopping experience.
Tesla published its financial statement for the first quarter of 2017 and revealed details of the new Model Y.
In the first three months of 2017, Tesla delivered 25.051 cars. The company’s revenue doubled compared to the same quarter last year and amounted to $ 2.7 billion. Tesla reported a net loss of $ 1.33 per share, while Wall Street analysts predicted that this figure would be $ 0,81.
The company also said that the production of Model 3 would begin in July. Tesla expects to produce 5,000 cars a week in 2017 and increase this figure to 10,000 for the same period next year. In a letter to investors, the company denied the judgments that the Model 3 would be better than Model S.
The same thought was expressed by the head of Tesla Elon Mask at a press conference on the quarterly report: “We are doing everything possible to explain to customers that the Model 3 will not get an advantage over the Model S, as many might think. Model S will be better than the novelty, and it should be so because this model is an expensive one.”
New crossover Tesla Model Y
At the same event, Mask revealed the details of the new crossover Tesla Model Y. We expect that the production of the model will begin in 2020. Contrary to previous assumptions, the car will be on a “completely different” platform compared to the upcoming Model 3. Mask also announced plans to abandon the 12-volt batteries in the novelty that were in previous Tesla cars. This will reduce the number of wiring and, therefore, simplify the production process.
During the conference, Elon Mask also talked about the creation of a self-governing electric vehicle. In April 2016, he first spoke of this idea: “We are thinking about creating a means of transport that does not look like a bus, but will solve the problem of population density in the city.”
According to unconfirmed information, Tesla Model Y will receive an engine with a power reserve of 370 km, a battery pack with a capacity of about 70 kWh and a wing of a falcon – doors opening upwards. Tesla will update the autopilot in its novelty. The new autonomous control system will include radar, eight cameras, and 12 ultrasonic sensors.
Creators base the Tesla Model Y on the Model 3 electric sedan. The crossover will take place below Model X in the company’s model range. However, specialists expect the new model of electric vehicle to be more expensive than Model 3.
If you have startups, then you need a cloud. It is an inexpensive and flexible system. Almost the whole market thinks that way. Is it true? Are the cloud services suitable for startups?
The clouds changed the market. Any startup can now use resources, which were previously only available to large enterprises.
Main cloud options
SaaS(software as a service) is a cloud application program, used for specific tasks of the customer. The client uses the program, but the provider fully maintains it.
PaaS(platform as a service) – when the client uses parts of the cloud provider’s power for its IT tasks.
IaaS(infrastructure as a service) – when a customer has a cloud platform, as the total processing power, on which he/she independently chooses, how and in what form they will use this infrastructure to solve problems.
A client pays only for resources when using any of these cloud models. He/she chooses from the package of services only what they specifically need. Such point-wise use of IT services became possible thanks to cloud technologies.
Cloud technologies will not disappear from the market in the coming years. It’s not even a fashion or trend, just mutual profit for all parties involved.
Clouds and startups
Clouds are the best solution for startups. Often, IT project owners do not have substantial resources in the beginning, but any startup requires thousands of dollars to pay for systems, licenses, etc. You pay only for the IT service used while using cloud technologies.
There are no special clouds for startups. Some clouds are suitable for a particular project or task. Therefore, nowadays there are very popular those services and programs that work in the cloud and optimize, including financially, work on a project. Yes, these cloud solutions will be limited in functionality. But the client will have only what he/she needs.
The average age of startups is from 10 to 20 years, all are young, and all want to start their projects. Often such “beginners” do not have enough experience in the physical world because they do not look outside their offices.
To start your project, you need to collect a team of various specialists, and you can already fail at this stage, managing not those and not with that experience, but the same dreamers with “genius” ideas. An experienced team is much better for the project. If you look at the world practice, people after 35, or even 40 years organize startups.
Why? Because the winners are those, who have a lot of offline experience. It is clear that there are also many ambitious young people, but they have in the first place – experience, and not starting something of their own at any cost.
Only the progress of technology, programming flies faster than time. In amazing times we live: new languages, technologies, tools, and frameworks appear every day. It’s never been so fun to the technicians as now. However, in this noise, it is easy to get lost.
The prevalence of the “backend as a service” approach (BaaS)
In modern development, the trend continues to move away from fenced, entirely independent applications towards the use of third-party services to handle a large chunk of tedious but necessary aspects of the project. For example, cloud storage, push notifications and user administration.
Backend as a Service (BaaS) is the common nomenclature of such utilities, and their popularity is guaranteed to increase, in particular, in the corporate segment, where scalability is a huge burden for large applications. With BaaS, such as Parse, engineering and operational teams can focus on the company’s competitiveness, while others deal with the underlying functions and associated overheads.
Enhancing the emphasis on functional programming languages
As modern applications need more bandwidth, data storage, and processing, it becomes apparent that the single-machine model is morally obsolete. To scale the system, you need to parallelize it as much as possible. And this leads us to functional programming languages like Haskell, Clojure, Scala, and Erlang. Accordingly, there is a growing demand for programmers in these environments.
Imperative programming base is a changeable state (changing the value of an object during execution). Functional programming focuses on a stable state in which the declared object retains its value throughout the process. Consequently, functional languages have an important advantage over imperative and object-oriented languages: they are inherently designed to support parallelization and substantial competitiveness.
Object-oriented programming will not disappear shortly. Nevertheless, users want faster search results, and researchers — more accurate data. Therefore, functional programming will receive more attention, being the most obvious solution.
Movement towards Material Design and common patterns
Despite the fact that in recent years, the score has ruled a flat design and a minimalist approach to the UI, in 2016 the focus may shift towards material design.
Apple — the most persistent devotees of flat design, which took out of fashion the volume elements of the interface. Microsoft picked up the baton with its Metro-design in 2010. But Google did it in its way and left in the direction of “natural design.” Gradient, shadows, and glare send in the era of the functionality of the old-good bulk design. A lighter or darker tone of the element may indicate whether it is clickable or not.
As material design takes shape, we expect that creative designers will increasingly turn to this kind of UI as they move on to responsiveness. Web UI will become more and more of the same type. That’s pretty good. Designers understand that the most typical tasks, such as logging into an account or navigating through menus, should look equally familiar for all sorts of users.
It will be an exciting year for web programming, starting with the fundamental technologies and ending with the user experience. With the release of ECMAScript6 in July 2015, they updated the most ubiquitous language. With BaaS leveled an array of headaches for developers. Functional languages become mainstream, and material design gradually unifies the UI on all types of devices.
Regardless of which position and in which area you work, think about the advantages that these innovations can give to you.