In a recent webinar, Jabil’s Daniel Ayoub, Director of Marketing, Enterprise and Infrastructure, shared the top predictions for what to expect in the new year, including a hard look at advanced 3D printing materials. Jabil (NYSE: JBL) is a product solutions company providing comprehensive electronics design, production and product management services. Offering complete product supply chain management from facilities in 28 countries, the company (which is one of the main partners and first adopters of HP’s multijet fusion technology for additive manufacturing in production) provides comprehensive, individualized-focused solutions to customers in a broad range of industries.
According to Ayoub, 2016 brought its share of technological breakthroughs by introducing consumers to new ways to live, exercise and work. Smart technologies began integrating into our cars and homes. So what will 2017 bring us to build on the advancements of 2016? Here are a few highlights from the video presentation:
Rise of the Home Robots
In 2016, a variety of robots were introduced, but few made it into consumers’ homes. Most were marketed as a concierge service that resembled an Amazon Echo on wheels. While these home robots are interactive, it will be a bit longer until we see Rosie from the Jetsons. This year, we expect to welcome several new market-ready robots into consumer homes.
Brite-Box Data Centers
Over the past few years, we’ve seen open compute and virtualization significantly lower the cost and barriers of having products in data centers. We predict that the next evolution of that will be in the switching market. Systems integrators are now offering data center switches that separate hardware and software so you can go to a third-party, buy their software and run it on the switch. In the coming year, we predict that these switching platforms will become more mainstream in data centers.
Moore’s Law states that there is a physical limit for how small we can make transistors. Once we hit that limit, we can’t go any smaller or pack them any tighter. The next generation to continue Moore’s Law will be to grow in a three-dimensional axis by stacking the chips on top of each other. This will result in increased CPU speed and density with huge cost reductions. We expect to see a numerous products utilize these chips in 2017.
Wearables Augment Reality
Wearables have been a large discussion point last year, leading the evolution of healthcare, fitness and wellness applications. Some technologies have been simmering under the surface, such as glasses that we expect to become a big trend in 2017. These glasses are expected to augment reality with additional information when looking at objects.
Live Virtual Attendance
Virtual reality (VR) is breaking into the mainstream in the event market. With just a smartphone and VR headset, consumers can now attend an event live from anywhere in the world. Don’t have enough space for more attendees at your next event? With live virtual attendance, events can sell as many tickets as they need even if the facility is at capacity.
Advanced 3D Printing Materials
From printing food to body organs, there are a number of early-stage technologies that are now finally starting to come to fruition. Recent advancements have enabled companies to print blood vessels, which are believed to be the next breakthrough in artificial organs. The ability to print electronics is another interesting trend in the coming year. Using conductive inks, manufacturers can now embed circuits onto materials such as fabrics, textiles, rubber and glass.
As you watch 2017 unfold, the world will enter new territories and present opportunities that will transform the way you conduct business. Now sit back, relax and enjoy the year – but don’t get left behind.