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27 TECH TRENDS THAT WILL CHANGE THE WORLD IN 2018

Wondering what’s in store for tech in the year to come? We took the crystal-ball question outside of PCMag labs to tech experts in business and research and asked them to opine on the coming evolution of augmented and mixed reality, blockchain, security, and automation and IoT. Our major takeaways: Life will move even faster and become even more interesting in 2018.

AUGMENTED REALITY AND MIXED REALITY

Augmented reality is changing the way we work and play. This year, we’ve seen an explosion in new AR headsets—even Google Glass made a comeback in the business world—while Microsoft’s Windows Mixed Reality ecosystem churned out partner headsets that blend AR and virtual reality (VR) in immersive experiences. At the same time, smartphone-based AR has evolved, thanks to Apple and Google going all in on the technology.

THE SMARTPHONE AR ERA IS HERE

Thanks to the iPhone X and the emergence of more accessible AR development tools such as Apple’s ARKit and Google’s ARCore, smartphone-based AR experiences are poised to evolve beyond fads like Pokemon Go and become everyday reality for mobile users.

“Over a billion smartphone users will likely create AR content at least once in 2018, with at least 300 million doing so monthly, and tens of millions weekly.”—Deloitte’s 2018 Technology, Media, and Telecommunications Predictions Report

AR WILL REPLACE MANUALS, TIE INTO IOT

“The value of AR will grow exponentially as the IoT [Internet of Things] proliferates. As IoT data continues to grow... so too does the power of AR, as it allows us to leverage and interpret that information. AR serves as the bridge between the physical and digital worlds, opening up our ability to take advantage of the torrent of information and insights produced by billions of smart, connected products worldwide… AR will [also] continue to supplement or replace traditional manuals, brochures, and training documents at an ever-faster

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