I guess it’s that time. I have never been one to dust off my crystal ball for an annual look-see, but this time, for these issues, I think I’m safe. In 2014:
Big Data will benefit large organizations behind the scenes but will still not have much impact on the rest of us. It may mean that airlines will eke out a few more pennies from every mile flown or the big box stores will stock two new varieties of Halloween candy, but that’s about as close as it will come to you and me. It’s not like ESPN is going to stop showing reruns of football games from two years ago. It’s not like Amazon will trade carpet-bombing spam for laser-guided emails. I don’t think 2014 will be the year that the merchants you deal with will start to recognize you the way that they could if they actually understood everything they know about you.
We won’t find a better way to talk about Enterprise Content Management. Let’s face it, the people who liked ECM are the only people who are ever going to like ECM and they don’t really care what we call it. Well, as long as we don’t call it Records Management. The rest of the world, the people that the people who like ECM are trying to influence, will remain unimpressed with the whole concept. People will continue to focus on the cost, the work and the aggravation required to store stuff in a meaningful way instead of the benefit of having stored it that way. That’s because ECM or whatever we call it will still boil down to “the work I have to do in order to make someone else’s job easier.” As the baby-boomers inch closer to retirement and the work those other folks have to do drifts into a future we won’t care about, you can expect to see greater apathy around this topic.
Native apps will continue to rule. Smart phones might be getting smarter but they aren’t really changing. This means that people are actually starting to understand what it means to own an iPhone or a Droid. They like the way their phone works (that’s why they’ve bought 2 or 3 of them) and they want apps that work that way. If I wanted generic HTML5 apps, I wouldn’t have an iPhone.
Ads will continue to ruin everything. More ads, dumber ads and ads that are more annoying, harder to close and harder to ignore will drag on the benefits of social media and information sharing sites like an anchor. More and more people will start questioning the value of social media as the minefield of pop-up content and videos get harder and harder to navigate. In response, most marketing departments will focus on building ads that are even harder to avoid.
Email will remain the communication service we simultaneously hate to love, love to hate and use with reckless abandon. We will all complain about email but we will continue to use it because there really isn’t anything better. In-house scial media isn’t better. As I write this, I have two timed-out links in my Lync client because files arrived while I was getting a cup of coffee. I don’t care; both of those files are probably in my inbox. Most of us don’t want a constant connection to people. In-house social media turns everybody into that annoying person who sends you an email and then runs to your office to ask “did you get my email?” Who wants that?
Adobe will rule the world of undead software as well as the world of elite software. In spite of the faster, better and / or cheaper alternatives, we will still have Flash and Air running behind the scenes of something on our desktop at the end of 2014. Meanwhile, people (including me) will still prefer Creative Suite even though the price is going up, installation is getting harder and most users (including me) only understand a small fraction of the tool’s awesome capabilities. This confirms the legitimacy of the rules of inertia and good branding.
Microsoft Office for iOS will not really come to market. I really hope that I am wrong about this one, but if I have to pound a stake into the ground, I’m pounding it in the no-go side of the line. Maybe the new guy in Redmond will realize that the people who use Office are just like the much smaller market who buy Creative Suite and that they would snap a real iOS version up like candy. Maybe he (or she?) will also realize that the power of the brand, while formidable is not nearly strong enough to lure people away from their iThings to the things Microsoft makes or to lure the deskbound-and-happy folks into the cloud.
That’s all I’ve got. 7 things, not 10 like most lists, not 8 like John Mancini – 7 things that I am pretty sure will or won’t happen. If I’m wrong, and you are the first person to prove it to me, I’ll buy you a beer.#iOS #ECM #Office #HTML5 #Ads #Adobe #Nativeapps #Marketing #E-mail #socialmedia #mobile #BigData