With technology and innovation moving at a rapid pace, it’s only natural to wonder what advancements the year ahead may bring¦ and we are expecting 2019 to be big!
As we all know, the hottest tech trends can disappear as quickly as they ‘blow up’, so sometimes it’s hard to predict what is going to really stick around and make an impact on our everyday life.
Helping us all to navigate through what’s likely to make waves in the tech space this year is 13-year old Jenk Oz – CEO of iCoolKid, a leading digital lifestyle hub for young people, and Generation Z influencer.
Here, Jenk shares his expert predictions on the key trends we all should be watching out for in 2019, which will ensure you stay ahead of the game!
SCREENSHARING VIDEO APPS
Jenk Oz says: “With iPhone’s recent FaceTime bug taking over the news for all the wrong reasons, many people are starting to look elsewhere for reliable video conferencing.
Squad is a brilliant new app which allows users to host video chats & conference calls with friends, whilst also showing them what you are doing on your screen.
This is the perfect app for us ‘Generation Z’ers’ as well as anyone who uses conference calls as a way of brainstorming creative ideas. I think it’s definitely something that will gain popularity quickly and become an essential way of communicating for many people day to day.”
MERGING OF SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORMS
Jenk Oz says: “We all spend a lot of time scrolling through our social media feeds and checking out what our friends and favourite influencers are up to. However, a challenge for social media platforms moving forward is how to keep their offering fresh and engaging for users.
I have a feeling that 2019 will be the year when we see some major, exciting developments across the core social channels! We know that Mark Zuckerberg is currently working on a plan to fuse Facebook, Instagram, and Whatsapp together to make everything much better connected – imagine having to only go into one app to access everything! This is really interesting news and this hybrid platform is bound to make waves, but with so many of us being both selective with the channels we use and protective over content on each channel I’m not sure if this change will be a crowd pleaser. It will also mean that people (and brands) will be able to communicate directly between platforms, so will be sure to create more discussions around user privacy.”
RISE OF SMART HOMES
Jenk Oz says: ‘Smart technology within the home is continuing to grow and evolve. We all know how popular AI assistants such as Alexa are (so popular, their website crashed over Christmas!), and I think the continued rise of smart home tech is a definite trend for 2019. AI assistants are often used to turn lights on and off and change the room temperature with one command, which is super quick and convenient, and I think is going to continue to be huge. We’ve heard that smart toilets are going to be the next ‘big thing’, we know they have been popular in Japan for many years now and are considered the most hygienic way to clean after using the toilet – with functions including heated seats, night lights, cleaner modes and deodorisers, I think we will start to see smart toilets appearing in UK homes!’
TV ON SOCIAL
Jenk Oz says: “Catch up TV as we know it today is soon going to be old news with Instagram’s latest launch – IGTV – now being utilised by big brands. Users are now able to upload series of long videos, and this has been jumped on by some big global companies, such as The Disney Channel, who recently launched their first IGTV series ‘Ruby’s Gems’. This shows just how quickly platforms such as Instagram are continuing to evolve, and I think more and more we will see people using social media to get their hit of news and entertainment.”
Jenk Oz says: “Recently, the CEO of Reddit, Alexis Ohanian, commented that we’ve reached ‘peak social’ on massive content sharing platforms like Instagram and Facebook, and predicted that people are going to start craving smaller and more intimate apps again. Alexis believes people have already started migrating from big social platforms and are looking for alternative options e.g. platforms which will connect them with like-minded people, interested in the same hobbies, music, sports etc. Will this mean goodbye Facebook? Personally, I don’t see Facebook disappearing anytime soon, but I guess we will have to wait and see¦”
PERSONAL SAFETY APPS
Jenk Oz says: “Apps that increase personal safety continue to be on the rise and a big talking point when it comes to upcoming tech trends. In 2019, I believe we will see more big brands bring safety-based innovations to their products. For example, Apple recently upgraded its Smartwatch, so it calls emergency services if it experiences a significant impact and doesn’t detect movement within 30 seconds. At iCoolKid, we are big fans of anything that will help us stay safe! My prediction is that we’ll soon see the development of a voice-operated app which calls emergency services if it hears a certain codeword. Sounds like something out of sci-fi movie? Let’s check back on this in 2020!”
ANONYMOUS QUESTION APPS
Jenk Oz says: “Recently we have seen an increasing number of ‘anonymous’ apps, which allow users to ask random people questions. Askfm 2.0, for example, is a blockchain based Q&A social network, which allows users to communicate with other people in the group and ask questions without any social awkwardness. The platform is all about getting insights and quick answers to questions. I imagine other similar apps popping up in 2019 however, with discussion and awareness around internet safety on the increase, we envisage there might be a decrease in the number of people using these apps soon. We aren’t fans of anonymous apps at iCoolKid and think they can cause more harm than good – so we’re hoping this is one trend that will soon be on the decline.”
Check this clip from Jenk Oz Powerfull stuff: