Barcelona is known for its outstanding football team, renowned for seamless player-to-player connectivity and constant innovation (as Arsenal learned last week). Similar themes were present as the city hosted Mobile World Congress 2016.
As you’ll know from our highlights post, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg walked on to the stage while an audience sat tuned into their virtual reality headsets, oblivious to the billionaire’s presence. He went on to deliver a fascinating talk on VR’s potential to “change the way we live and communicate”. Then there was F1 driver Lewis Hamilton’s comments on self-driving cars, as well as exciting developments in the world of wearables, with the eSim beginning to be adopted (an innovation we showcased at our stand with a Samsung Gear S2 smartwatch).
Another highlight was our ‘six-second predictions’. To celebrate our Connected Living 2025 report – a survey of 1200 young people across the globe on their expectations for connected life in a decade – we asked some leading mobile industry experts for their ‘six-second predictions’. Helen Keegan, Pierre Metivier, Luke Edwards, GadgetsBoy, Ewan MacLeod and James Tagg were just some of those who took part. How ambitious were their predictions, and, crucially, how likely are they to come to fruition?
Worrying news for medical and legal professionals – mobile marketing guru, Helen Keegan, predicts that AI could eliminate 25% of the workforce in these sectors. It’s a fascinating thought, so how did it rate on our ‘likelihood’ and ‘ambition’ scales?
LIKELIHOOD: 7/10 – A recent Oxford University study predicted that artificially intelligent machines could replace up to 30% of the workforce, and doctors and lawyers could also feel the impact.
Jobs which involve repetitive tasks could be vulnerable to automation – so medical administrative assistants and legal clerks could potentially be exposed.
However, GPs, consultants, surgeons and the cast of Grey’s Anatomy shouldn’t worry anytime soon – robots aren’t likely to be able to perform complex operations demanding high levels of dexterity anytime soon, nor are they going to demonstrate the compassion needed to reassure and calm patients. Similarly, they’re unlikely to show the rhetorical flair and prudent judgement of barristers and judges by 2025 – so Judge Judy can relax!
AMBITION 9/10 – We love Helen’s ambition – the notion of a medical and legal sector reliant on a robot workforce is a revolutionary one (and a robot hospital drama would be pretty cool!)
Contactless evangelist Pierre Metivier’s vision of travel in 2025 is very positive; we definitely hope it comes true! He predicts that smartphones will replace plane tickets, and that airport travel will be made seamless by NFC technology. In particular, Pierre predicts that he’ll be able to travel to MWC in Barcelona, from Paris, using just his phone.
LIKELIHOOD: 8/10 – As you saw in our #MyNFCDay series, NFC technology has already revolutionized trains, buses and trams, so why shouldn’t air travel be next? One potential pitfall is security, and that’s why it’s important we develop strong authentication solutions.
AMBITION: 7/10 – Pierre’s prediction is ambitious. A world of seamless airport travel still seems a long way off, but with NFC technology already thriving it seems like only a matter of time before airlines and airports embrace it!
MWC16 was dominated by wearables; following this trend, Pocket-Lint News Editor Luke Edwards thinks that by 2025 they’ll be able to act as virtual personal health assistants. In other words, it’s worrying news for personal trainers and nutritionists! He predicts that fitness trackers will be able to analyse your body’s vitamin and mineral levels and actually advise you what you should eat next!
LIKELIHOOD: 7/10 – With innovative trackers already on the market, and likely to improve thanks to eSim technology, we’re not surprised that Luke is feeling optimistic! However, in order to analyze vitamin and mineral levels, we wonder whether people will actually require some kind of body implant! Will consumers be amenable to such an idea?
AMBITION: 9/10 – We think that this idea is really ambitious, but that doesn’t mean it’s not possible! Ten years ago some might have thought the possibility of a heart rate monitor linking up to a smartphone as extremely unrealistic!
Key mobile influencer and Mobile Industry Review Editor, Ewan Macleod, predicts ordering food in 2025 will be possible without even thinking about it.! On the blog we’ve recently discussed how the UK food sector has seen an explosion in mobile payments – and talked about how in Hong Kong travelers can use their rail cards to order food at restaurants and buy from drinks machines! So, why not?
LIKELIHOOD: 8/10 – With the rate at which NFC technology is evolving, and the enormous increase in popularity it’s witnessed over the last year, we think it’s possible that by 2025, we’ll be able to order food without even thinking about it. Sensors at our favorite restaurants will sense our proximately and place orders in anticipation. The connected society of 2025 is set to be speedier and more efficient than ever before.
AMBITION: 7/10 – We’re impressed by the ambition of Ewan’s vision – but we think it’s quite likely given the acceleration in NFC development.
Influential tech blogger and reviewer, GadgetsBoy, predicts that by 2025 Augmented Reality will be a key aspect of connected life. After Mark Zuckerberg’s speech, virtual reality is certainly dominating the headlines – so, how likely is it that AR might one day overtake VR and become mainstream by 2025?
LIKELIHOOD: 9/10 – We think augmented reality is set to change the way we live and work. In a decade’s time we expect to see mechanics, engineers and medical professionals all using smart glasses to enhance their understanding of machines, technical and medical problems.
At home, the video gaming experience will be transformed by AR goggles, immersing the user in environments that fuse the virtual and the physical worlds. In addition, we see the social network experience being revolutionized – rather than logging into Facebook on your mobile, you may see an icon in your smart visor instead.
AMBITION: 8/10 – The prediction is an ambitious one – augmented reality is still in early stages of development and not as progressed as VR. Nevertheless, we think it’s a very real possibility!
We also asked James Tagg, Chief Innovation Officer of Truphone, for his six-second prediction for the connected world of 2025 – he predicts your mobile network will be your best friend; a network that understands and responds to you.
LIKELIHOOD: 7/10 – This type of network would have to be very powerful to support the level of connectivity we’re talking about here. MWC this year showed 5G is still in its embryonic stages, so this might not be ready very soon. However, it is coming, and we think it’s set to drive an IoT revolution, so the likelihood of this being possible is relatively high. Whether it’ll be mainstream is another question, though.
AMBITION: 9/10 – the idea of a network becoming a user’s best friend is an exciting one – we certainly share James’ vision of a world where connectivity and mobility drives daily life, bringing all sorts of benefits.
As you can see, we received an eclectic mix of Connected Living 2025 predictions on the stand at MWC this year – and we’re very grateful to those who participated.
To discover more and to learn what our younger survey respondents thought about the world of 2025, make sure you read the full report here. Or, if you want to share your own prediction, tweet to us at @GemaltoMobile, or post a comment below.