Gartner Identifies Top 10 Strategic Technologies for 2012

by CXO staff    Oct 19, 2011

Gartner has highlighted top 10 technologies and trends that will be strategic for most organizations in 2012.

According to a statement, Gartner defines a strategic technology as one with the potential for significant impact on the enterprise in the next three years. Factors that denote significant impact include a high potential for disruption to IT or the business, the need for a major dollar investment, or the risk of being late to adopt.

The top 10 strategic technologies for 2012 include:

Media Tablets and Beyond: No single platform, form factor or technology will dominate and companies should expect to manage a diverse environment with two to four intelligent clients through 2015. IT leaders need a managed diversity program to address multiple form factors, as well as employees bringing their own smartphones and tablet devices into the workplace.

Mobile Centric Applications and Interfaces: The user interfaces with windows, icons, menus, and pointers will be replaced by mobile-centric interfaces emphasizing touch, gesture, search, voice and video. By 2015, mobile Web technologies will have advanced sufficiently, so that half the applications that would be written as native apps in 2011 will instead be delivered as Web apps.

Contextual and Social User Experience: Context-aware computing uses information about an end-user or objects environment, activities, connections and preferences to improve the quality of interaction with that end-user or object. Through 2013, context aware applications will appear in targeted areas such as location-based services, augmented reality on mobile devices, and mobile commerce.

Internet of Things: The Internet of Things (IoT) is a concept that describes how the Internet will expand as sensors and intelligence are added to physical items such as consumer devices or physical assets and these objects are connected to the Internet. Key elements of the IoT include embedded sensors, image recognition, Near Field Communication (NFC) payment and more.

App Stores and Marketplaces: Gartner forecasts that by 2014, there will be more than 70 billion mobile applications download from app stores every year. This will grow from consumer-only phenomena to an enterprise focus.

Next-Generation Analytics: Over the next three years, analytics will mature from structured and simple data analyzed by individuals to analysis of complex information of many types like text, video etc. from many systems supporting a collaborative decision process. Analytics is also beginning to shift to the cloud and exploit cloud resources for high performance and grid computing.

Big Data: One major implication of big data is that in the future users will not be able to put all useful information into a single data warehouse. Logical data warehouses bringing together information from multiple sources as and when needed will replace the single data warehouse model.

In-Memory Computing: Gartner sees huge use of flash memory in consumer devices, entertainment equipment and other embedded IT systems. In-memory applications platforms include in-memory analytics, event processing platforms, in-memory application servers, in-memory data management and in-memory messaging.

As cost and availability of memory intensive hardware platforms reach tipping points in 2012 and 2013, the in-memory approach will enter the mainstream.

Extreme Low-Energy Servers: These systems are built on low-power processors typically used in mobile devices. The potential advantage is delivering 30 times or more processors in a particular server unit with lower power consumption vs. current server approaches.

Cloud Computing: Cloud is a disruptive force and has the potential for broad long-term impact in most industries. While the market remains in its early stages in 2011 and 2012, it will see the full range of large enterprise providers fully engaged in delivering a range of offerings to build cloud environments and deliver cloud services. Oracle, IBM and SAP all have major initiatives to deliver a broader range of cloud services over the next two years.

“These top 10 technologies will be strategic for most organizations, and IT leaders should use this list in their strategic planning process by reviewing the technologies and how they fit into their expected needs,” said David Cearley, Vice President and Gartner fellow.