Technology advancement seems to be happening at the speed of light, and 2017 promises to bring some big changes and breakthroughs. To keep up with these tech innovations, keep an eye on these four categories and start investing now:
The two buzz phrases for 2017 are “smart home” and “The Internet of Things.” These interconnected devices are making their way into your living room. There are a lot of players in the space with undoubtedly more trying to jockey their way in as interconnectibility continues to be a priority.
One leader in this space is ADT. Its home automation suite of products, such as ADT Pulse, work seamlessly to pull smart home capabilities into one simple home automation system. With this tool you can get a text message when your front door is opened, you can turn off lights, and you can lock and unlock doors. All of these features make everyday tasks a breeze.
AI Personal Assistant
Whether you work for yourself, are a busy parent or need some help getting your calendar in order, there’s a slew of scheduling assistant startups that promise to deliver the next best thing to having a personal assistant.
For example, X.ai’s Amy Ingram emails your meeting attendees and finds the right time for your meeting and event. She’s so real in her interface that recipients will barely be able to tell she’s an AI. Look for AI to continue to get smarter as machine learning and knowledge-based modeling methods find more applications in 2017.
Augmented reality is a computer-generated image that is superimposed over a real one. An example you probably are familiar with is the first down line that you see in televised football games. Even though augmented reality has existed for years, technologists are now developing new and practical applications for consumers.
For example, Layar is a popular app that lets you drag and drop multimedia content onto everything from flyers to packaging. You can use this tool to create custom interactive polls, embed your HTML or use multimedia in new ways.
As home automation continues to work on interoperability this year, there’s plenty of other devices that do cool things even though they aren’t “smart” yet. For instance, to address the world’s food supply and garbage demands, the Zera home food recycler takes your food scraps and turns them into fertilizer. Gone are the days of having to rotate huge composter bins because Zera is designed with urban households and denser living in mind. It can recycle a weeks’ worth of food in 24 hours.
What fun is having the latest and greatest tech devices if you can’t enjoy them with your own home-brewed beer? The iGulu home beer brewing system started as an Indiegogo campaign that raised over a million dollars to bring beer enthusiasts a machine like no other. These custom beer makers are barely larger than a home espresso machine and allow you to choose from recipes in the machine’s library or create your own custom brew for about $600. Maybe advances in home automation will allow you to someday operate it virtually, ensuring a icy cold one is waiting for your when you arrive home.