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The media are full of predictions about what's going to happen in 2007. How about a look at what's NOT likely to occur? That's the approach taken by ABI Research, which recently surveyed the high-tech applications and communications sector. Many of its predictions concern over-hyped technology that isn't ready to supplant existing systems. Radio frequency identification (RFID), for example, remains "an exciting, dynamic market," says ABI. But many of the issues surrounding the technology, including privacy concerns, corporate mandates for adoption and the need to support multiple protocols, will still be on the table by the end of 2007. RFID based on standards promulgated by the Electronic Product Code, and utilizing UHF bands, is not the only "flavor" available to solve business problems. Multiple frequencies, standards and classes of RFID will remain competitive, ABI predicts. Yet "only a select few vendors will be able to offer the breadth of hardware, software and services to be a one-stop shop for their RFID customers." There will be no "cookie-cutter" models for determining the return on investment or total cost of ownership of RFID systems. At the same time, ABI says, there will be no rush to embrace the new, high-speed 802.11n protocol for wireless networks. ABI also makes a number of predictions related to the home use of technology. "Console wars" between makers of computer gaming systems will not be decided, it says, and neither the Blu-ray nor HD-DVD system for high-definition movie viewing will give in to the other-at least this year.
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