Deloitte’s 2008 Technology Predictions

According to a Deloitte study released today, few new technology breakthroughs are expected this year. Instead, Canadians will confront the consequences resulting from recent tectonic shifts in technology – and not all of the after-effects are positive. Now in its seventh year, Deloitte’s Technology, Media & Telecommunications (TMT) Predictions is an annual series of global predictions that showcase emerging global TMT trends that may impact businesses in 2008. Their predictions are based on research and input from more than 6,000 Deloitte practitioners specializing in TMT, Deloitte clients and alumni, industry analysts, and leading global TMT executives.

“Canadians continue to benefit from technological advances in nearly every aspect of our personal and professional lives, but Deloitte’s 2008 TMT Predictions reveal we are finally awakening to the reality that change comes at a price,” explains John Ruffolo, National Leader, Technology, Media & Telecommunications Industry Group, Deloitte. “For example, putting all of one’s data on a single device is extremely convenient until it is stolen, lost or simply malfunctioning. Further, society must carefully balance the needs of a growing planet with a threatened earth, as our homes’ carbon footprint is suddenly cause for concern.”

Deloitte’s TMT Predictions single out the top 10 trends in technology, media and telecommunications that will impact Canadian business in 2008. Not surprisingly, their technology predictions focus on security and privacy:

The rising value of digital protection: The value of personal computers (PCs) and other electronic devices no longer rests in their silicon chips, but in the data, files, songs and images they store. Backing up this content to protect it from viruses and theft, and making sure files are forward compatible may fuel growing industries. From anonymity to authenticity: The face of the Internet is changing. With concern about online fraud and predators increasing, social networking sites like Facebook have replaced the “secret Internet’s” use of fictitious identities and avatars by requiring users to post their real names, e-mail addresses, and photos. With eight million Facebook users, Canada leads the world in voting for authenticity over anonymity. The flight to privacy: It is beneficial when PCs, search engines, online retailers and social networks use our “private” information to help fill in forms faster or make useful suggestions. But, as recent controversies with Facebook, Beacon and other online sites demonstrate, even if privacy has not actually been breached, the online community is highly sensitive to a perception of violated privacy, ensuring it continues to be a flashpoint in 2008.

Deloitte’s Prediction reports are available online and will be showcased in a five-stop, cross-country TMT Predictions Roadshow Series in Toronto (January 22), Ottawa (January 24), Montreal (January 25), Vancouver (January 29) and Calgary (January 30).