Voice-activated lights? Multi-sensory online experiences? Talking back to the TV? It may sound like an episode of Dr Who, but these are things we all have to look forward to in the coming years, if futurologists are to be believed. In our January issue, MT looks at the technologies that could be powering our homes – and our businesses – in the not too distant future.
Some of these innovations could have useful implications for retailers: being able to smell perfume you are about to purchase over the internet may well come in handy, for example. Others range from technologies enabling parents to track kids with under-the-skin microchips (we can see the attraction, though it’s a little Big Brother-esque), or allowing couch potatoes to order their TVs to change the channel (which might not go down well with the anti-obesity lobby). Then there’s life-management devices that monitor your health, projectors that let you watch mobile content on a big screen, and even HD-equipped video visors to enhance game-playing.
So many technologies have fallen into the trap of over-promising and under-delivering. Speech recognition software is an obvious example; but Roger Parry, chairman of Future plc, reckons that the problems associated with this technology are now behind it. ‘Dialling a number into a phone, typing a text message or even writing an essay on a laptop will soon be a matter of just talking to a piece of kit. Once the voice-activated technology becomes common, even turning on a light, opening a garage door or microwaving a meal may also become a short conversation with a microchip.’
But personally, we’re most excited about the idea of you reading a souped-up MT daily bulletin through HD specs…
Click HERE to read the whole of ‘Tomorrow’s World’ in full online.
In today's bulletin:
Sainsbury surprises by smashing Christmas forecasts
Energy suppliers make hay while the snow falls
Microsoft and Google try to take a bite of Apple
Tomorrow's world: the new era of technology
Psychology at Work: Make your New Year resolutions stick