The year 2015 is likely to see consolidation of technologies that have evolved in recent years. No great invention is in sight as of now. We give here our take on what is likely to happen in 2015 vis-à-vis 2014, in social media as well as other uses of information and communication technology (ICT).
- Mobile penetration the world over is rising fast, owing to ease of use, availability of device all the time, low costs etc etc. So, people are likely to have social media interactions more on mobile phones and less on laptops and PCs, to the extent that towards the end of 2015 or latest by 2016, for many social networking interactions, mobile devices will have overtaken laptops and PCs.
- As wearables lead to greater convergence of technologies and platforms, their use might increase. Some hardware innovations are very much needed if their use is to grow over the threshold. Right now, we do not see much great happening in the next 12 months.
- Money transfer and e-commerce through mobile apps are likely to grow up fast, especially in China, India and other ‘developing’ countries. Commerce through social media accounts (S-commerce) may start big this year.
- Video is doing to text and images what digital cameras and later mobile cameras did to text: offering a more realistic medium to share info and express emotions. So, video sharing over social networks (Facebook, Google Plus), as attachments (as on Twitter andd WhatsApp), and image and video sites (YouTube, Vimeo, Vine, Instagram, Pinterest) will increase greatly. YouTube is likely to face quite a competition this year.
- On social media, there would be more urge for anonymity, which would lead to more misuse of social networks and in turn more controls.
- Social advertising would gain respect to the extent that it starts challenging mainstream advertising, at least in some areas. 2015 will see digital media being recognised as one of the primary platforms for advertisements and brand-building.
- Social media search would gain much more prominence, in terms of number of searches and influence. So, expect sites with more social networking as well as straight social media messages coming on top of search pages.