As the year draws to a close, it’s time to reflect on some of the great tech we’ve seen in 2015. There have been some new developments and mind-blowing reveals. I’ve picked out a few things that I saw this year, and will definitely keep an eye on next year. Here’s my look at some exciting tech to watch out for in 2016:
In 2015, we’ve seen a new stage in mobile technology. Various mobile giants have released smartwatches for public use. This is something we’ve seen coming for a very long time. Everyone expected there to be a time where watches started using technology. Now, you can get a watch that will do almost anything a smartphone will do. In fact, some of the best smartwatches have more processing power than old smartphones! A smartwatch is a more convenient way of using technology in everyday life. They can partner up with your phone and send all your notifications directly to your wrist. Some of them allow you to speak to them, and they’ll search for things on Google.
Smartwatch sales have increased throughout the year, and they’re already fairly popular. But, I expect 2016 to be the year we see this industry explode. Manufacturers have released their first models so now know exactly what people like and dislike. Next year, we should see more smartwatches on the market, which are better and more powerful! They should also become more affordable, which only means more people will have one!
Who’d have thought there’d be a day where printing was considered fun?! For years, we’ve seen printers as just a standard piece of technology. Usually found in offices, their only purpose was to print out documents and sheets of paper. No one would ever walk into a store and squeal with delight as they saw a printer. Well, times have changed! This year has seen the first 3D printers released to the public market. Something that used to seem so futuristic is now very real! With a 3D printer, you can create whatever you can think of. The printer will ‘print’ little models of whatever you design. There’s the potential for people to create things that they can then wear as a fashion accessory. Think bracelets and necklaces. The more creative amongst us may be able to design little toys for children or models of our favourite movie characters. In the health industry, they’ve been using 3D printers to create life-size models of the human heart! It's incredible what this technology can do.
Like I said, 2015 was the year we saw the first 3D printers released to the public. They have been used for many years in certain big industries. 3D printer price currently varies depending on what one you buy. Naturally, the top of the range printers will cost more than the bog standard ones. In 2016, I fully expect 3D printing to become even bigger. More will be on the market, and they’ll soon become a common bit of household tech.
If you’re a tech lover like me, then VR will get you very excited! Ever since gaming was first introduced, we’ve all known virtual reality was coming. Being able to play your favourite games and feeling like you’re a part of them. It’s every gamer's dream. Earlier this year, we saw some of the early VR gaming headsets. There was the oculus rift that allowed us a glimpse into the future of gaming. It didn’t offer a wide variety of games, but it did give people the chance to feel VR gaming for the first time. If you haven’t already tried it, put one on your Christmas list, they’re super fun! Then, Sony revealed its VR headset, which they intend to put on sale soon.
However, the big reveal was from Microsoft, as they showed us their Hololens prototype. This is a VR headset that’s not just for gaming! It can be used for all sorts of things around the home. The demon they showed was breathtaking and got everyone excited for virtual reality! I expect VR to be a huge thing in 2016, and you should think about getting your hands on a headset.
Cars are arguably the thing that’s been affected by tech the most. Over the years, more and more technology has been put into automobiles. Cars used to be built with very little tech, now, they’re full of it. I remember at the start of the year we were shown a few new developments in car technology. One of the standouts, for me, was autonomous driving. Yes, we were shown a self-driving car! Google have been using self-driving cars for a while now. They use them for their Google Maps services. But, BMW revealed one of the first autonomous vehicles for public use. A car that you could sit in, and it would drive itself! Naturally, we all went a little crazy. It was absurd, like something out of a movie. And yet, it was real! Do I think self-driving cars will become a common thing in 2016? No, I don’t think we’re there just yet! But, it is definitely something you should keep an eye on. I for one am excited to see what the next developments are!
The second thing that caught my eye revolved around car safety. Cars are now being made with sensors in the front and back, to help prevent crashes. If the car senses that you’re about to crash, it will trigger the braking system for you. We were shown demos of a car speeding towards a wall and then breaking without the driver pressing the brake pedal, it was crazy! In 2016, I expect to see further developments in this field. I’d love to own a car that can, essentially, save my life! It’s a great concept and shows how technology can help people in a very big way. Something to keep your eye on next year, that’s for sure!
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