From virtual self-expression and intelligent cities to the rise of health-tech and the digital afterlife, new research from the leading trend forecaster highlights the key changes and innovations tech companies can expect and explore in the decade ahead.
LONDON, August 24, 2021 – The decade ahead will be galvanised by tech advances, from virtual self-expression and intelligent cities to the rise of health-tech and the digital afterlife, according to new research WGSN, from the global authority on consumer and design trends.
Following tech’s unprecedented adoption in 2020, the world will continue to reverberate from the impact of the pandemic. This will drive significant and long-term shifts in mindsets: on one end, the rise of the YOLO economy, with consumers indulging in reactive hedonism and escapism. On the other, a more responsible attitude to sustainability, focusing on regeneration and social equity. In response, the tech industry will focus on innovating to help consumers connect and communicate in new ways, but also to protect and enhance ecology and enable new modes of self-expression and community action.
Launched alongside the new WGSN Consumer Tech subscription service, The Future of Consumer Tech 2030 report provides actionable insights to help tech businesses adapt and make the most out of the systemic changes affecting the post-pandemic world. Looking into what the next decade will bring to the consumer tech industry, the report includes the rise of the augmented self, an increased focus on regeneration and survival, and a post-pandemic focus on wellness that will accelerate consumer adoption of health-tech.
Key findings focus on four major themes:
- People: the 2020s will see the rise of the augmented self. As phygital technologies bridge the gap between physical and virtual, consumers will be able to inhabit entirely digital worlds, experience intimacy and tactility in remote communication, and take on augmented mental and sensory capabilities.
- Places: from the home to the city, responsive intelligence is set to reshape the way we inhabit, maintain and experience spaces over the next 10 years. Static buildings will increasingly behave more like living organisms, while smart objects will become part of the citizenry of intelligent cities.
- Systems: climate breakdown will drive two key approaches within tech: to regenerate, through products that have a net-positive impact on sustainability, and to survive, with a focus on protective tech for climate adaptation. The rise of decentralisation will open up new ways of collaborating and creating.
- Sustenance: a post-pandemic focus on physical and mental wellness will drive a health-tech boom, including personalised wellbeing — think 3D printers creating food with customised nutrients — and the rising field of death care, including digital death doulas and the digital afterlife
Sarah Housley, Head of WGSN Consumer Tech, commented: “As we move into the Fourth Industrial Revolution and technology continues to permeate all aspects of our lives, it’s vital for companies to understand new consumer behaviours and expectations in tech consumption. The Future of Consumer Tech 2030 report enables them to do this.”
According to Lisa Yong, Director of WGSN Consumer Tech: “We are delighted to have launched WGSN Consumer Tech, offering flagship reports such as The Future of Consumer Tech 2030, Consumer Tech Personas 2023 and CMF forecasts for 2023, among others. The new Consumer Tech vertical is a direct response to client requests and engagement with existing tech forecasts at WGSN. We have created a bespoke solution for tech businesses by working with leading consumer tech brands to shape the new product.”
You can find out more about WGSN Consumer Tech at bit.ly/WGSN-Consumer-Tech.
NOTES TO EDITORS
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