Monday, 14 December 2015 12:34

Citrix picks six top business trends for 2016

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Citrix VP Martin Duursma outlines the business trends expected in 2016, from the innovation nation to augmented reality, from the freelance economy to software secretaries and more!

As Chair of the Citrix CTO Office, Martin Duursma guides the company’s technology strategy, and is responsible for evangelising technology directions, trends and standards within Citrix.

Duursma is also the VP of Citrix Labs, where he is ‘chartered with conceiving and producing creative products, components and technologies as well he is responsible for external innovation through the Citrix Startup Accelerator program.’

So, Duursma is well placed to comment on the future of technology, and shares his thoughts with us on the ‘evolution of Australia’s start-up sector; how the workplace will embrace new innovative technology; the steady change of business models within the healthcare sector; and the rise of the freelancer worker.’

Below is further insight around each trend, so please read on!

1. The Innovation Nation

Supported by a significant focus on start-ups in Australia’s National Innovation and Science Agenda, start-ups and entrepreneurs will think twice before selling and entering foreign markets.

With bi-partisan support of increasing investments in the local knowledge economy and fostering the ideas boom, the small business sector and entrepreneurs will look for opportunities to collaborate with a number of corporate, government and venture capitalist partners to expand their business locally – seeing a steady decline of Australian innovations being stripped and shipped overseas.

2. Windows 10 adoption will rapidly increase

Earlier this year Microsoft set itself the goal of having Windows 10 on one billion devices by 2018. With estimates showing the new OS already powers around 150 million devices, this goal – although bold – is looking achievable. Like any new release, there is always a risk of stagnating and reluctance to adopt until proven – especially if businesses still need to access legacy applications.

As such, virtualisation software and migration tools will thrive in 2016, enabling organisations to immediately access these core business applications on new Windows 10 PCs and tablets, simplify the rollout of Windows 10, desktops and streamline the overall business app migration process. This approach will give the operating system a second wind in its mission to dominate the marketplace.

3. Australian healthcare goes from strength to strength

Despite the Australian healthcare industry traditionally being slow to adopt new technologies, we will see a surprising growth of investment and steady change of business models by both the private and public healthcare sector.

Specifically, wearable technology and mHealth apps will be embraced as doctors and organisations look to achieve a 360 degree, 24 hours, seven days a week view of our health, which in turn will address administrative and procedural inefficiencies to meet the rapid change in patient expectations.

To protect sensitive patient information and ensure compliance in this new era of healthcare, organisations will need to implement security solutions enabling them to maintain control of the devices and safeguard the data captured.

4. The office steps into the realms of augmented reality

Virtual and augmented reality will shift to become a new and real way of consumption and work as technology like Microsoft’s HoloLens filters through into the hands of more businesses and employees.

This will change the nature of physical workspaces both in the office and at home, with the way we work starting to become more activity-oriented and reconfigurable to cater for this new age of information sharing.

Beyond 2016, the technology used in the workplace will automatically switch to our preferences and needs when it senses we are using it, be gesture controlled, whilst big TV screens will become a thing of the past.

More below, please read on!



5. The rise of the software secretary

With consumer grade machine learning and speech recognition technology continuing to improve, so too will voice-based ‘digital assistants,’ such as Microsoft’s Cortana, Apple’s Siri and Google Now.

In their efforts to release new and improved versions of the platforms – encouraging consumers in developed markets to choose and use their technology on a daily basis – the big players will compete and outspend each other to invest in start-ups and specialist technicians focused on artificial intelligence.

6. The freelance economy now a fundamental part of Australian businesses

In 2015 3.7 million people undertook some sort of freelance work. In conjunction with this, businesses have found it challenging to stay on top of the latest technology and innovative practices – struggling to find the right talent to lead their organisation into the future.

During 2016, many businesses will adopt a bring-your-own-team model (BYOTeam), which will see more freelancers with unique skills hired to fill these gaps, in an efficient and cost-effective way.

That’s just 2016, but want to know what 2020 will look like? Additional analysis can be found in Citrix’s impressively detailed, 46-page 2020 Technology Landscape Report (PDF link).


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Alex Zaharov-Reutt

One of Australia’s best-known technology journalists and consumer tech experts, Alex has appeared in his capacity as technology expert on all of Australia’s free-to-air and pay TV networks on all the major news and current affairs programs, on commercial and public radio, and technology, lifestyle and reality TV shows. Visit Alex at Twitter here.

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