Technology is an ever-changing landscape of innovation and emerging trends. The advances in this field have affected not only individuals but also businesses. The past couple of years has witnessed businesses devising strategies to leverage these trends and improve outcomes considerably.

Every new innovation ushers in fresh opportunities for businesses worldwide. In fact, it is arguable that the pace of changes is so rapid that by the time businesses adjust to these, newer ones emerge. As a result, businesses need to stay alert and on their toes to respond to the transformations in ways that can benefit them.

Awareness is key to staying ahead of the curve at all times. Following are some of the trends that are gaining ground quickly and are likely to impact businesses significantly.

Drones

With the rising innovations in technology, fiction is no longer far from reality. In fact, one such example is the drone. Drones have begun to challenge the status quo and influence business decisions. Drones, also known as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) are predicted to be deployed commercially to make delivery of goods more easy for online retail businesses.

In fact, Amazon is all set to deliver packages with their Amazon Prime Air service that uses drones that can carry a weight of up to 5 pounds and can deliver the orders within 30 minutes of placing them. According to Paul Misener, vice president of Amazon for global public policy, “We believe that these Prime Air drones will be as normal as seeing a delivery truck driving down the street someday.”

Apart from this, drones have found usages in scores of other domains including farming, construction, security, media, inspections and surveys and so on.

Augmented Reality

4325703868_f2b034fa36_o

Augmented reality has started creating waves in the business world with its immense potential. Traditionally associated with providing information, augmented reality has now ventured into the realms of businesses as more and more industries are getting onboard with the idea.

Augmented reality employs the idea of superimposing digital images onto the real one. As a result, the visual is enhanced to include audio, graphics and other effects making it more intuitive. With the aid of wearable devices and the smartphone cameras, augmented reality has become quite feasible for commercial use.

Product manuals can come to life with augmented reality. For example, Hyundai’s augmented reality app ‘Virtual Guide‘ enables users to get well acquainted with the basic functions of their cars.

Apart from remote guidance, augmented reality can also be leveraged successfully in training, product demonstration, shopping guidance and so on.

Wearable Technology

There has been a lot of discussion surrounding wearable technology for quite some time now. Devices like smartwatches, wristbands, smart glasses, smart clothing and so on have proved beneficial for implementing a more comprehensive and data-driven approach towards businesses, thus improving efficiency and productivity.

Monitoring employee movements and their health, providing enhanced educational opportunities, accessing information discreetly etc. are a few of the numerous uses of wearable technology. These devices have been leading the way for a more mobile and connected workforce.

The wearable technology market value is expected to reach $19 billion by 2018. Wearable technology has the ability to work seamlessly with other innovations to create a smarter approach towards business outcomes.

Additive Manufacturing

The 3D printing trend, also known as additive manufacturing, uses advanced manufacturing techniques to create three-dimensional objects that are minutely detailed, usable products. This method has eliminated the need for tooling by printing designs that can be fed directly to a software.

Additive manufacturing can help businesses create their own products instead of relying on outsourced ones. The products created are highly customizable and are cheaper to produce than the traditional ones. Additionally, with this method, businesses can create prototypes of the final model, thus eliminating any scope for mistakes. Replacement of parts is not a problem anymore with 3D printing.

As the manufacturing costs begin to fall with 3D printing taking the lead, newer applications will start to come up to ease its integration into businesses. Cost-effectiveness and quick manufacturing are two of the major benefits of additive manufacturing that resonate well with most businesses. In fact, it has been estimated that 67% of businesses have already started using 3D printing owing to its benefits.

With newer innovations quickly becoming popular, the future shows promise. Now it is up to you to leverage these technologies to optimize your business’s promotional techniques. Awareness and flexibility to adjust are key to making these innovations work for your business.