5 New Technologies You Should Integrate Into Your Business
It’s often assumed, at least within tech circles, that traditional enterprise is slow to adapt to emerging trends. That may have been true in the past, but it is becoming increasingly less so.
After seeing smaller players maneuver quickly to take advantage of emerging trends, the enterprise is now reacting faster than ever to new technologies and finding novel ways to integrate them into their businesses.
Here are five tools that represent some of the most popular trends in technology, and how traditional enterprises are leveraging them into powerful business solutions:
1. Augmented Reality
If there was any question about the future of augmented reality, it should have been put to rest when Microsoft unveiled its HoloLens glasses. The company recently announcedthat its AR headset will be available for devlopers early next year.
While the technology is still in its early phases, it’s clear that Microsoft has its sights set squarely on enterprise customers. Yes, many of the demos shown were games, but that was likely just to show off the capability of the platform.
How to integrate: Enterprises can use AR devices like the HoloLens to show designs, collaborate remotely and see and learn new things in relation to the real world. Business ideas are better received when they’re shown, not told. Holographic computing devices present a unique opportunity to bring products and information to life.
Best of all, AR lenses allow users to envision and work with three-dimensional datawithout the expenses of creating or launching.
2. Wireless Conference Rooms
Any respectable company will have multiple meeting spaces where it can bring teams together to discuss strategy and progress. In the past, displaying images and video involved clunky solutions with wires, cables and connectors splayed across the meeting space.
Now, meeting rooms are following Internet connectivity into the wireless era. Most users have seen simple consumer solutions, such as Apple’s Airplay or Google’s Chromecast. But large companies need more robust solutions.
How to integrate: Adopt a wireless solution that connects offices, employees and clients and makes sharing and collaborating easier for everyone involved, no matter their location. One such solution is Kramer, which has produced the VIA line of collaboration tools designed to take the conference room to wherever your team is.
With VIA, companies are able to wirelessly stream video and presentations across multiple conference rooms. It allows participants to easily take control of or share a screen. These unique features help take meetings beyond showing simple presentations and really allow team members to work together.
VIA accounts for the reality of modern devices and multiple platforms, so whether the user has a PC or Mac, Android or iPhone, they can easily connect and share their screen. In a world where more and more companies are allowing employees to BYOD (Bring Your Own Device), that’s critically important. Of course, the company made sure to cater to the needs of large businesses and protects all data transmitted by encrypting it.
3. IoT in the Enterprise
Whether it’s smart lights, smart thermostats or connected security cameras, the Internet of Things has produced a broad range of consumer-facing technologies. That doesn’t mean that the enterprise is being ignored.
In fact, the enterprise may turn out to be one of the largest markets for IoT devices. In fact, manufacturers are already taking advantage of connected sensors and cameras to monitor productivity and efficiency.
How to integrate: The Internet of Things isn’t just designed to empower things, but to empower people. Take time-consuming tasks like data entry, for instance. As IoT evolves within the workplace, manual entry will become increasingly unnecessary, limiting mistakes and freeing up more time for employees to focus on applying that data and less time entering it.
Beyond that, connected devices will only accelerate the existing trend of employee mobility, allowing workers to be far more productive — no matter where in the world they are located.
4. 3D Printing
You’re probably thinking, “Of course 3D printing will affect the enterprise; that’s where it started.” That’s true. The technology has its roots in the enterprise, especially in the manufacturing space where rapid prototyping is critically important.
However, 3D printing has recently expanded into the consumer space, becoming popular with hardware startups and makers looking to experiment with new designs. 3D printing has even made it to the world of fashion, thanks to the dramatic cuts in costs that the new generation of 3D printers provides.
It only seems logical that, as these new, smaller and more affordable 3D printers make their way back to the enterprise, they will enable a whole new generation of uses for large companies that can purchase and deploy these devices at scale.
The flexibility and speed 3D printing provides cannot be overestimated. So, as a new generation of vastly more affordable printers come online, the enterprise will stand to benefit just as much as startups.
How to integrate: For enterprises, 3D printing creates a fast, easy way to build something from nothing. Take prototyping, for example. This gives businesses an opportunity to try new things — and the freedom to make mistakes — before a prototype is created.
Shipments of 3D printers are expected to double this year and every year between now and 2018, according to Gartner. As such, this cutting-edge technology will begin to play a bigger role in streamlining day-to-day business processes, from prototyping to customizing. And, as a result, enterprises will see increased innovation and reduced manufacturing costs.
Surely, this must be purely a consumer space, right? With fitness trackers and smartwatches leading the market, it doesn’t seem like there is a perfect fit at first blush. However, there are two key opportunities for enterprises. One is in the area of health; the other is in the smartwatch space.
How to integrate: With much of the wearable space dedicated to health and fitness tracking, this is a brand new opportunity for businesses to encourage healthy and active lifestyles for their employees by supplying them with fitness trackers. The benefits of a healthy workforce are obvious, and with the price of many simple fitness trackers so low, this could become one of the standard devices that employees receive.
As for smartwatches, they can be used to present employees with additional mobility, accessibility and freedom over how they work, with the ability to make and accept voice calls and text messages and receive real-time updates, no matter where they are.
With the entry of Apple into the space, and the continued rapid develop of Android Wear devices, enterprises need to take a hard look at this industry to see how they can leverage these increasingly powerful wearable devices.
Source | Forbes