5 Technology Trends into 2021

With necessity as the mother of invention, the Covid-19 crisis has led to a dramatic acceleration incorporating digital transformation. Keeping up with fast-moving technology trends is critical for companies seeking to build resilience and retool for the post-pandemic world.

These technology applications are helping create big opportunities in the era of the digital enterprise, with AI on the edge and 5G ushering in Industry 4.0, automated artificial intelligence (AI) powering the financial industry, and cognitive science and gamification helping win the war for talent.


Artificial intelligence implants brain into factory tools and machinery.

Known as “edge AI” or “AI on the edge,” “edge AI” or “AI on the edge” refers to a network technology that makes it possible for AI algorithms to run closer to or even on the devices that collect data. As a result of Covid-19 lockdowns and the shift to working from home, network traffic has changed dramatically and is likely to accelerate the move already underway toward edge computing.

A benefit of edge computing is that it conserves bandwidth and increases efficiency by processing information closer to the users and devices that need it, rather than sending it to central processing facilities. 


Manufacturing is being revolutionized by 5G factories.

IHS Markit research, cited by the World Economic Forum, predicts that the fifth-generation mobile network, 5G, will generate $22.3 million jobs by 2035 and generate a global economic output of $13.2 trillion. As the global wireless standard unlocks a new sphere of technological possibilities, it is expected to significantly accelerate the transition to Industry 4.0, the Industrial Internet of Things.

Powerful digital capabilities are coming to the manufacturing industry with 5G’s ability to support millions of data-intensive connections. The 5G network can transfer data 100 times faster than 4G, eliminating processing delays and ensuring real-time processing in factories.


Using smartphone data to improve driver safety and insure vehicles based on usage.

It is projected that the market for usage-based insurance (UBI) will reach $126 billion by 2027. Telematics, defined by Gartner as “a means to transmit data back to an organization in real-time using wireless devices and “black boxes”, has fueled one example of UBI: the development of insurance programs tailored to an individual’s driving habits.

The ubiquitous presence of smartphones by 2021 will make mobile telematics a powerful addition to UBI, allowing insurers to collect data in real-time and better understand driving habits using embedded sensors and tracking technologies. 


Financial organizations become smarter with automated and explainable AI.

According to The Economist Intelligence Unit, banks and insurance companies will invest 86% more in AI by 2025. 

Companies can maximize their operational performance by utilizing AI even if their employees lack background in computer science. The deployment of AI at a larger scale will thus require user-friendly AI platforms that ensure that business employees can build models quickly, understand and trust their output, and confidently make decisions.

DreamQuark’s Brain is one example of a fully automated AI platform for the financial industry’s sales and customer engagement teams. A start-up’s proprietary deep-learning technology allows employees with no data science expertise to build AI models using prebuilt apps. 


Network access rights and authentication rights are given due consideration in cybersecurity.

Cybercriminals have a unique opportunity due to the Covid-19 crisis to increase their attacks, according to Interpol. It is critical to building truly resilient digital organizations to identify common IT security weaknesses and to develop cybersecurity maturity. 

More about this in our interview with Justin Shaifer.



Securities offered through Securities America, Inc., member FINRA (www.finra.org)/SIPC/www.sipc.org), a separate entity. Lee Michael Murphy is licensed with the California Department of Insurance, License 0H18660. Lee Michael Murphy is an Investment Advisor Representative with Securities America Advisors, a registered investment advisor The Free Retiree, Securities America Advisors, and Securities America Incorporated are separate entities. Career advisor Sergio Patterson, attorney Matt McElroy are not affiliated with Securities America Advisors or Securities America Incorporated. Securities America Advisors, Securities America Incorporated, and its representatives do not provide tax or legal advice; therefore, it is important to coordinate with your tax or legal advisor regarding your specific situation.

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