Top 10 strategic technologies for 2012

highlighted the top 10 technologies and trends that will be strategic for most
organizations in 2012.

defines a strategic technology as one with the potential for significant impact
on the enterprise in the next three years. Factors that denote significant
impact include a high potential for disruption to IT or the business, the need
for a major dollar investment, or the risk of being late to adopt.

A strategic
technology may be an existing technology that has matured and/or become
suitable for a wider range of uses. It may also be an emerging technology that
offers an opportunity for strategic business advantage for early adopters or
with potential for significant market disruption in the next five years. These
technologies impact the organization’s long-term plans, programs and

“These top
10 technologies will be strategic for most organizations, and IT leaders should
use this list in their strategic planning process by reviewing the technologies
and how they fit into their expected needs,” said David Cearley, vice president
and Gartner fellow

The top 10
strategic technologies for 2012 include:

Media Tablets and Beyond

Users can
choose between various form factors when it comes to mobile computing. No
single platform, form factor or technology will dominate and companies should
expect to manage a diverse environment with two to four intelligent clients
through 2015. IT leaders need a managed diversity program to address multiple
form factors, as well as employees bringing their own smartphones and tablet
devices into the workplace.

will have to come up with two mobile strategies one to address the business
to employee (B2E) scenario and one to address the business to consumer (B2C)
scenario. On the B2E front, IT must consider social goals, business goals,
financial goals, and risk management goals.

On the B2C
front, which includes business to business (B2B) activities to support
consumers, IT needs to address a number of additional issues such as surfacing
and managing APIs to access enterprise information and systems, integration
with third-party applications, integration with various partners for
capabilities such as search and social networking, and delivery through app

Mobile-Centric Applications and Interfaces

The user
interface (IU) paradigm in place for more than 20 years is changing. UIs with
windows, icons, menus, and pointers will be replaced by mobile-centric
interfaces emphasizing touch, gesture, search, voice and video. Applications
themselves are likely to shift to more focused and simple apps that can be
assembled into more complex solutions. These changes will drive the need for
new user interface design skills.

consumer application platform tools and mobile enterprise platform tools are
emerging to make it easier to develop in this cross-platform environment. HTML5
will also provide a long term model to address some of the cross-platform
issues. By 2015, mobile Web technologies will have advanced sufficiently, so
that half the applications that would be written as native apps in 2011 will
instead be delivered as Web apps.

Contextual and Social User Experience

computing uses information about an end-user or objects environment,
activities, connections and preferences to improve the quality of interaction
with that end-user or object. A contextually aware system anticipates the
user’s needs and proactively serves up the most appropriate and customized
content, product or service. Context can be used to link mobile, social,
location, payment and commerce. It can help build skills in augmented reality,
model-driven security and ensemble applications. Through 2013, context aware
applications will appear in targeted areas such as location-based services,
augmented reality on mobile devices, and mobile commerce.

Internet of Things


The Internet
of Things (IoT) is a concept that describes how the Internet will expand as
sensors and intelligence are added to physical items such as consumer devices
or physical assets and these objects are connected to the Internet. The vision
and concept have existed for years, however, there has been an acceleration in
the number and types of things that are being connected and in the technologies
for identifying, sensing and communicating. These technologies are reaching
critical mass and an economic tipping point over the next few years. Key
elements of the IoT include:


that detect and communicate changes are being embedded, not just in mobile
devices, but in an increasing number of places and objects.


recognition technologies strive to identify objects, people, buildings, places
logos, and anything else that has value to consumers and enterprises.
Smartphones and tablets equipped with cameras have pushed this technology from
mainly industrial applications to broad consumer and enterprise applications.

Field Communication (NFC) payment

allows users to make payments by waving their mobile phone in front of a
compatible reader. Once NFC is embedded in a critical mass of phones for
payment, industries such as public transportation, airlines, retail and
healthcare can explore other areas in which NFC technology can improve
efficiency and customer service.

App Stores and Marketplaces

stores by Apple and Android provide marketplaces where hundreds of thousands of
applications are available to mobile users. Gartner forecasts that by 2014,
there will be more than 70 billion mobile application downloads from app stores
every year. This will grow from a consumer-only phenomena to an enterprise

enterprise app stores, the role of IT shifts from that of a centralized planner
to a market manager providing governance and brokerage services to users and
potentially an ecosystem to support entrepreneurs. Enterprises should use a
managed diversity approach to focus on app store efforts and segment apps by
risk and value.

Next-Generation Analytics

Analytics is
growing along three key dimensions:

1. From
traditional offline analytics to in-line embedded analytics. This has been the
focus for many efforts in the past and will continue to be an important focus
for analytics.

2. From analyzing
historical data to explain what happened to analyzing historical and real-time
data from multiple systems to simulate and predict the future.

3. Over the
next three years, analytics will mature along a third dimension, from
structured and simple data analyzed by individuals to analysis of complex
information of many types (text, video, etc”¦) from many systems supporting a
collaborative decision process that brings multiple people together to analyze,
brainstorm and make decisions.

Big Data

The size,
complexity of formats and speed of delivery exceeds the capabilities of
traditional data management technologies; it requires the use of new or exotic
technologies simply to manage the volume alone. Many new technologies are
emerging, with the potential to be disruptive (e.g., in-memory DBMS).

In-Memory Computing

Gartner sees
huge use of flash memory in consumer devices, entertainment equipment and other
embedded IT systems. In addition, it offers a new layer of the memory hierarchy
in servers that has key advantages “” space, heat, performance and ruggedness
among them. Besides delivering a new storage tier, the availability of large
amounts of memory is driving new application models. In-memory applications
platforms include in-memory analytics, event processing platforms, in-memory
application servers, in-memory data management and in-memory messaging.

Extreme Low-Energy Servers

The adoption
of low-energy servers “” the radical new systems being proposed, announced and
marketed by mostly new entrants to the server business “”will take the buyer on
a trip backward in time. These systems are built on low-power processors
typically used in mobile devices. The potential advantage is delivering 30
times or more processors in a particular server unit with lower power
consumption vs. current server approaches.

Cloud Computing

Cloud is a
disruptive force and has the potential for broad long-term impact in most
industries. While the market remains in its early stages in 2011 and 2012, it
will see the full range of large enterprise providers fully engaged in
delivering a range of offerings to build cloud environments and deliver cloud
services. Oracle, IBM and SAP all have major initiatives to deliver a broader
range of cloud services over the next two years. As Microsoft continues to
expand its cloud offering, and these traditional enterprise players expand
offerings, users will see competition heat up and enterprise-level cloud
services increase.

By Team
[email protected]


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