With all the technological developments of 2016, movies with automated cars and robots set in the future – like Minority Report and recently released Passengers – don’t seem too far-fetched anymore. Keep yourself up to date and make your life easier by getting to know these tech trends for 2017.
Ride sharing apps
Have you recently stood outside on the street trying to hail a cab? Gone may be the days of waiting needlessly outside in unpleasant weather. Though Uber seems to be dipping into every market – the company is now valued at $68 billion – it is facing competition in APAC. Major startups like Singapore-based Grab Taxi and Indonesia company Go-Jek are expanding services, with the latter offering on-demand food delivery services already. In any case, avoid the upcoming Chinese New Year commotion and hail a cab in 2017 style, i.e. with your mobile.
On-demand meal services
It seemed 2016 was the year of on-demand – from on-demand TV to car-hailing apps – and 2017 is sure to follow this trend. With millennials working busy hours and little time to cook, on-demand meal services, from gourmet to assemble-at-home yourself, are popping up rapidly. UK-based Deliveroo launched in APAC last year, competing with major players in Asia, FoodPanda. Meanwhile, Ubereats also entered Southeast Asia this year, hungry for customers.
Self driving cars
Hong Kong reportedly has the highest density of Tesla superchargers in the world, with a total of 36 supercharger stalls. Elon Musk himself dubbed Hong Kong a “beacon city” for electric vehicles, and his vision for vehicles of the future will hit Asia hard. Tesla recently announced that all Tesla vehicles produced in their factory will have the “hardware needed for full self-driving capability at a safety level substantially greater than that of a human driver.” With many players entering the self-driving market – including luxury car maker Mercedes-Benz and tech-giant Apple – “driving” may soon have a very different meaning.
It’s all about health and fitness in 2017, and what better way to keep track of your heart rate, the amount of calories you burn, and distance walked everyday than with a wearable? Think of it as a small mobile phone tracking your every movement – all from your wrist. Major players like Fossil have entered the market with a line of wearables, competing with Samsung, Apple, Fitbit and Huawei. There’s no need to take your phone out of your pocket anymore, when notifications pop-up on your watch.
Blue tooth headphones / speakers
Many were aghast when Apple revealed that the iPhone 7 would come sans headphone jack. However, this is something traditionalists should get used to, as 2017 is the era of blue tooth and wireless headphones. It’s perfect for anyone who wants to multi-task, allowing you to cook, clean or move around on the street without fear of getting tied up literally by wires.
IoT was a major catchphrase for 2016. Standing for the Internet of Things, this just means having your devices talk to each other. With Google Home, all you have to do is utter a few commands (think Siri) without having to physically get up and do anything. Want to control your entertainment system? Turn off your air conditioner? That can be done with a verbal command. Luckily your wearables will remind you to walk, in case you become too comfortable with your sedentary lifestyle.
Virtual Reality (VR)
With the release of Oculus Rift, virtual reality (VR) technology made a huge splash in 2016. And in case you didn’t jump on that bandwagon, you were probably one of the 100 million who downloaded Pokémon Go, an Augmented Reality game (meaning that virtual objects appear as though they’re in the real world). Like 3D movies, brace yourself with for the next new frontier in phones and computer screens – VR.