I have been contemplating to write this post for while now. Here are my predictions about 10 products/technologies/areas to take off big in 2011 not in any particular order:
1. Gaming Systems
Apple has enjoyed the success of the iphones for the past 3 years. I think its now time for them to come with a breakthrough again. I believe apple will come out with an awesome gaming device/platform for Home gaming in 2011. I m hoping for this gaming device/platform to revolutionize the home gaming industry like the Nintendo Wii. Microsoft's Kinect is also something we need to watch out for.
2. The rise of the Android
Apple led the way for the new era of tablets through their ipad in 2010. In 2011, I m hoping to see more android based tablets which will be much cheaper than the ipads. Android is already accelerating faster than the iphone/ipad these days. I am also hoping to see more cheaper android phones in the market in 2011. More people will switch to smartphones. Smartphones are the new cell phones. There will also be more applications on the android (already almost every app on the iphone is there on the android).
3. Web/Internet TVs
We saw google TV, Boxee box, Roku come up in 2010 but none of them took off. In 2011, I m hoping to see more players in this area. Again, we need to watch out for apple in this domain. If they have a good app platform on their apple TV (similar to the one they had for the iphones), they have a good chance to win this market. Apple TV is only 99 bucks.
4. Cloud Computing
2010 was already the year of cloud computing. 2011 is going accelerate that big time with big established players trying to acquire smaller companies in the cloud computing area. C'mon looks like these days we only need a LCD touch screen and a graphics processor on a computer or a smart phone. Everything else can be outsourced to the cloud. Google, Salesforce, Oracle are a few companies to watch out for in this space.
5. Social Networking
Everybody knows the facebook these days. Facebook has about 500 million users today. In 2011, they are going to grow even bigger. I still dont think Facebook will IPO in 2011. They are not ready for the wallstreet yet. Twitter, which is the new age RSS feed will attract more people and even try to make some money this year. Either Foursquare or Gowalla will get acquired by one of the established players in 2011 and the location check-in space will be consolidated. Facebook will become big in the location space.
6. Electric Cars
Almost every automobile maker is offering electric cars these days. 2011 will have cheaper electric car options.
We already saw the rise of Groupon in the coupon marketplace in 2010. With Groupon declining a 6 billion offer from google, there is something we need to learn. The coupon space is exploding not only in the US. China and India are the next big targets for the companies in the couponing space. I believe there are going to be more consolidations (acquisitions by bigger players) in this area.
8. The rise of Seed Investments and Incubators
If you had a web startup 5 years ago, you probably could have raised a million-5 million in the first round of funding from Venture Capitalists (not that you needed that much money to do a web startup). A couple of years ago and until last year, that money reduced to half a million from angel investors. In 2011, there are going to be more seed stage investments, which could range from anywhere between 5K to 250K. Startup Incubators are going to play a major role in helping bootstrap startups and helping them secure seed stage investments (or runway). This area is going to explode in 2011.
9. More 3D movies and 3D TVs
There will be atleast twice as many 3D movies in 2011 compared to 2010. More TV manufactures will come up with cheaper 3D TVs. Already LCD TVs have replaced the picture tube TVs. LEDs were like the new LCDs in 2010. 2011 will see the gradual rise of 3D TVs. Eventhough people don't like to wear a glass and watch 3D TV, people will eventually buy 3D TV if the price of a 3D TV is comparable to a LED/LCD TV. There might even be some 3D tablets in 2011.
10. AI will be perceivable and gradually enter our day to day life
If we haven't already realized, Artificial Intelligence plays a significant role in our lives today. From our phones to the cars, AI is everywhere. 2011 will see some amazing AI products especially in the web and mobile technology space, especially in search and knowledge managment.