A lot has changed for businesses in the past two years, especially as they adopt digital services at a rapid pace. This sets 2022 up to be an interesting time for business technologies, so we continue our look at the trends that can define the year ahead. You can see the first four predictions in Part 1.
AI and Cybersecurity
“Though AI and machine learning have been used in security products for some time, they are becoming increasingly important in modern incident response orchestration,” noted TechTarget.
Computer systems can create billions of alerts every second, amounts that are impossible for humans to keep up with. Called ‘alert fatigue, it’s a prime reason why many cybercrime attacks on companies are successful. But artificial intelligence is changing the rules – using AI, security people can identify key problems much more quickly.
Cybersecurity must be a priority for every business, and the rising use of AI in security makes it more affordable for companies to have reliable digital security. Some security companies use this to create highly-automated systems that they then offer to customers – this is called Managed Security Services (the same as managed services, but for security). Overall, AI is helping digital security become more effective and affordable.
“Developers are realising blockchain technology can be equally useful in traditional, commercial applications,” wrote the Voice of America in 2017.
To be fair, every year someone predicts blockchain will become a big deal. In essence, it’s a way to keep a near fraud-proof ledger of information. Nobody can change that information without others on the blockchain network knowing about it.
Whether you want to maintain clean business records or track the origin of wild-caught fish, blockchain provides tamper-proof records. Many people really want blockchain to become a big deal, even though it’s still primarily used for cryptocurrencies and, as of 2021, NFTs (a controversial way to identify digital collectables). But those are the faddish examples. The interesting blockchain stuff happens behind the scenes. Chances are, if you work in finance or logistics, you’ll come in touch with blockchain systems this year without necessarily knowing it.
Discovery vs Search
“Search is great — if you know what you are looking for. However, as the amount of online content (especially video) increases exponentially, general search is often struggling to deliver meaningful results, unless you’re very explicit and goal-oriented,” said this article on Medium.
We all already use discovery search. Formally, things such as Facebook feeds or product suggestions on Takealot count as discovery search. Informally, the ads you see on Instagram or the things punted by TikTok users also count as discovery. Ditto for recommendations on Netflix or Spotify.
Discovery is in essence finding what you didn’t know you were looking for, and it’s a trend expanding the search world beyond Google and Bing. For any business selling products or services, discovery can be every potent marketing tool. But it means different things – it may require you to have good social media positioning or perhaps you need to find some influencers and give them free stuff.
“Once a novel idea, digital platforms have become increasingly common. At the most basic level, platforms help to make resources and participants more accessible to each other on an as-needed basis,” Deloitte wrote in a report.
Your business already relies on platforms. It could be Gmail, Office365, Salesforce or Clickup. Maybe you have business pages on Facebook or Linkedin. Perhaps you do your accounting on Sage or you receive payments through PayGate. These are all platform technologies.
Think of a platform as a mall. It’s one place but offers many different things, and you only pick what you need. Large companies, especially banks, have built platforms to make their services more efficient and help them quickly create new products. Smaller companies use platform services because they are cheap (and sometimes free). Platforms have been growing for several years already, so this is not so much a prediction for 2022 as a clear trend for the foreseeable future.