Six technology forecasts for 2021

As we all know, 2020 was something else. Many things happened and they will all likely be talked about in future high school History lessons. But there are one or two positives to take from 2020.

Having to work from home meant people had more time to themselves and their families, and technology was pushed through a forced evolution to compensate for the new working environment and the rise of certain viruses.

We’re all happy about the new year, and 2021’s technology is going to have some memorable trends and changes of its own, six of which we are going to cover in this here blog post.

Hybrid Working Situations

If past trends are anything to go off, we’re going to be bouncing between working from home and working at the office. Coronavirus cases will drop and people will think it’s safe until a sudden spike of infections – probably caused by going to work – and back home we go!

So with all of this being a risk, we predict that 2021 is going to have a lot of fluctuating work environments and hardly any consistency. As sad as it is to hear, it’s very likely. At some point though, we will find a balance, which will potentially throw us into permanent hybrid working. This means that technology will have to catch up so that we can switch between a fully stacked office workspace to a minimal home office without compromising on doing our job.

Individuals will need to communicate effectively and constantly share files over the cloud, increasing the need for document management systems.

Teams will likely be restricted to their own areas in the office space to avoid the risk of catching Coronavirus, so – with regards to print technology – MFDs/MFPs will be allocated to each team hub, as opposed to being available for all employees to use.

Increased Use of the Cloud

According to the Quocirca Global Print 2025 Report, 73% of organisations reckon that they will transition to cloud print management by 2025. But the presence of the Coronavirus will likely speed up this process as more people are having to work from home and distant from people when they are actually in the workspace.

The events of 2020 have changed the world of printed documents, and the effects will remain relevant for years to come. These changes were likely to occur at some point, but they came about significantly faster thanks to the rapidly growing need for them.

Cloud solutions were already the print industry’s most popular and leading trend, and the pandemic has only gone and made the trend more powerful and relevant for businesses.

The Importance of Security

As the need for print management and cloud working increases, security risks increase. More new technology means more new vulnerabilities for people to exploit. As businesses transition from a physical to a remote workplace, their cybersecurity will be one of the main considerations.

We believe that 2021 will be the year that businesses invest more into their cybersecurity for both remote and real life working to ensure their sensitive information, data and employees are safe. Because, as we all know, the risks that come from not having a high level of security are detrimental, and investing in better cybersecurity isn’t as difficult as it may seem.

Faxing. Yes, Faxing

Now before you start typing on your fancy, modern keyboard about how outdated this blog is, just give it a chance.

This one mainly relates to the healthcare industry, as 75% of all hospital communication came through a fax machine, and about 9,000,00,000 pages are faxed each year. That’s a lot of paper.

PHI security (Protected Health Information) is incredibly important for healthcare, so when a potential customer wants to acquire a new print management solution, they often ask why the fax machine is so important.

Healthcare’s focus on ensuring security for their people, communication and business has only been increased due to the presence of the Coronavirus. Alongside this, cloud communication is likely to creep its way into the healthcare system slowly on a case-by-case basis. We understand that most of what goes on in healthcare happens actually at work, but services will likely try to transition to the cloud for external communication tools, such as secure messaging.

Because of this, many vendors offer a secure and simple solution that helps track and enable efficient faxing for everyone. A combination of this and the Coronavirus means that 2021 is likely going to have a lot of progress for faxing and healthcare.

Telepathic Technology

Believe it or not, the Coronavirus pandemic has led to improvements in how people deal with hygiene and how contactless and efficient technology can be. People now understand how to avoid transmitting bacteria and viruses to one another and how to act if they show symptoms of illness, and hopefully, these practices are carried over into the future.

So hopefully the way we’ve all had to deal with technology can remain the same, if not, get even better.

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