3Other Types of Wearable Computers
Although Google Glass will get some attention, non-facial wearable tech will also be in headlines. Apple is expected to launch an iWatch in 2014, and Samsung will more than likely unveil an improved Galaxy Gear smartwatch next year. Other companies might also get into the wearable tech mix. It’ll be a big 2014 for wearable tech.
4Mobile Payment Providers
Mobile payments have become an important market for companies around the globe. Right now, Square is leading the way, and will likely go public in 2014, putting its Reader and Register technologies front and center. However, PayPal also offers a mobile card-swiping service, and many other smaller companies are jumping into the space, as well. Expect to hear a lot more about that in 2014.
5Fiber Service for the Consumer
Google Fiber has set off a new war for high-speed data service to consumers. Google Fiber is expected to expand its footprint in 2014, but other, established companies might try to push the fiber rollout even further. Verizon, for one, will likely expand its FiOS offering in 2014. Cable companies will try to boost their data-transmission speeds. It’ll be a good year for Web browsing in the United States.
6Intelligent Home Products
Nest has made a huge mark on the technology world with its intelligent thermostat and now, is producing a carbon monoxide/smoke alarm that can communicate with its thermostat and keep families safe. A recent report suggested Google might also get into the intelligent home market in 2014. It should be interesting to see where Nest and others go in that space.
Devices like the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One are sure to capture headlines in 2014, due mainly to the expectation of continuing strong sales well into the new year. But the Nintendo Wii U might also grab the spotlight if its sales troubles continue. Add that to the possibility of Valve launching its Steam Machine out of beta in 2014, and the year is shaping up to be a big one for consoles.
The 4K UHD TV revolution is officially upon us. At the Consumer Electronics Show in January, several companies, including LG and Samsung, will unveil their next-generation UHD products, and prices are expected to come down significantly throughout the year. This time next year, HDTV might be not nearly as appealing as it is right now.
9A New Era of Desktops
Apple has fired a shot over the bow of just about every other company in the marketplace with its new Mac Pro. The device has an innovative design that’s extremely powerful and might make companies like Hewlett-Packard and Dell think more seriously about their desktop lines. It should be interesting to see how PC makers respond to the Mac Pro in 2014.
10Encrypted Digital Currency
The Bitcoin digital current was a hot-button topic in 2013, and that should only continue into 2014. The currency has gained a lot of value in the past year. However, there has been a lot of concern among currency regulators and law enforcement agencies about Bitcoin’s stability and its use as the currency of choice in illicit markets. Will Bitcoin gain its much-desired global acceptance in 2014? Will other currencies supplant the leader? It’ll be an interesting show to watch.
11Amazon Prime Air
Amazon only teased its drone-based Prime Air delivery system this year, which means 2014 will be the company’s time to announce improvements and possibilities for implementation. It’s unlikely that Amazon will be able to launch Prime Air in more than just a few test markets in 2014, but it’ll still be on the top of the technology world’s items of things to watch out for in 2014.