Phil Murphy

Principal Analyst, Forrester Research

This conversation is closed.

In the year 2020, how will business (therefore information technology) be fundamentally different from today?

If you look back 10 years, we had no iPhones, iTunes, etc - smart phones weren't very smart. Look what the tablet has done to publishing, Video Streaming's impact to video rental markets. What disruptive new devices, and new market forces will shape the business world in 2020? Fluid supply chains that sense demand, build on-demand, distribute to end-consumers and share profits at sale time? What outlandishly different things await us 8 years hence?

Closing Statement from Phil Murphy

Will technology lead business change or business (model) changes drive technology change, or will they meet in the middle? Social media's impact on political systems and norms will follow the "Arab Spring" seas of change happeninng today.

  • thumb
    Oct 3 2011: Walter - I respectfully submit - not wrong way around. As business goes, so shall technology, but maybe we're simply in violent agreement, coming from different ends to a middle. You can argue that technology enabled eBusiness in late 1990s, but it also disrupted business, blew away barriers to entry and saw power slip away from the nrom (corporate IT) to the business (marketing).

    Social media is having a similar disruptive force, but the power accrues to individuals, not the corporations. I think in 2020 that apps begin on smart-devices-of-the-future that haven't been invented yet, but the results of those apps will be developed in the cloud and follow me (find me) wherever I am when they're ready. I expect HUGE socio-political upheaval - perhaps not unlike what you suggest above.

    I expect other industries to fall prey to low-barriers-to-entry and massive affordable computing power via cloud providers - AFTER we fix little things like security, authentication, multi-tennancy, etc.
  • Oct 5 2011: In my opinion, we do not have to worry about 2020 we'll see it when it comes. As for me, the most important thing is the present not the future or past. No one can exactly say what'd happen even tomorrow, do you? it's just my point of view.
  • thumb
    Oct 4 2011: MO, Just trying to generate some conversation around what business / IT look like in about 8 years, for example - some have speculated that the classic supply chain model where a company buys raw materials, manufactures a product, warehouses it, distributes it to retailers - with each cog in the wheel tacking on an increase will fade away. The manufacturer becomes more of a broker that will sense / demand as it happens, place orders with dozens of newer, more agile firms that were set up to build-on-demand - distribution to the customer is immediate, and the whole supply chain gets paid when the customer receives goods. Whether that happens or not, the ramificaitons on IT and business are profound.
  • thumb
    Oct 4 2011: You will most propably pay for what you want nothing else.
  • thumb
    Oct 4 2011: I am not sure what you are asking. One can easily compare the industrial age to the information age, but I am confused as to what element we would compare to the information age. I believe as a world we are making progress through various forms of education. Consequently, we are becoming more independent in our thinking. Perhaps, we will find ourselves as freelancers rather than corporate herds of technologists. No more offices ect,..
  • thumb
    Oct 3 2011: Google will provide everything in the market, that's for sure :D (I love Google btw)
  • thumb
    Oct 3 2011: Wrong way around. How will information technology (therefore business) be fundamentally different from today? We'll enter an era of total lateral ultra broadband connectivity. Every human will become potentially a major broadcast conglomerate. Ideas from the shop floor will take over the function of management. Humans will be able to speed read and absorb data orders of magnitudes more than at present. Republicanism will give way to true democracy as every citizen will vote on every issue; we won't need representation.