1. Online Killer Social App: A new application will emege that will integrate induviduals online and offline worlds to provide social single-window service experience.
[Analyzing:Carried forward to 2011] Facebook overpassed Google first time this year in terms of the number of visitors as well as time spent on any site. The Facebook users more and more using the site more than just sharing. There has been a lot many apps. Facebook is quick in adding popular functionalities like places, email, etc thus widening its usage. however Facebook, though dreams, is not what could be meant as a single-window-service experience integrating online and offline world. BTW I left Oracle last year to build an App ( on Facebook, mobiles and independent site/community ) for personalized recommendations to consumers (myBantu) which also serves a platform for personalized relevant recommendations to portals (media, retail, travel, etc.)
2. Explosion of adaption of Smart phones iPhone, Androids etc for all purpose needs like information(news, blogs), entertainment(music, movies, videos), games, personal management(health, wealth, life), online quick helps, and most importantly to do mobile transactions. The marketing world would start chasing the mobile world resulting into a flood of mobile ads. This has already began with Google buying AdMob and Apple buying Quattro. The wireless vendors like ATT, Verizon would now jump in the acquisition frenzy.
[Analysis:True] Its true that iPhone triggered an explosion of usage of smart phones. For many of us it is becoming an natural extension of our life. Here are some interesting numbers. Last week 10 billionth iPhone app got download. From 1 billion to 10 billion journey was completed in about 20 months (April 23rd 2009 to Jan 24th 2011). Ten-fold growth in 20 months! With the usage of Smartphone, mobile ads are growing however they are yet to reach to an irritation threshold.
3. eRaders and Netbooks: Though eReaders like Kindle, Nook and ‘rumoured’ iSlate/iTablet would signigicantly get adapted, the functionality would also start appearing in Netbooks and Smartphones thus in the long term exclusive eReaders would get squeezed. Intel’s new N450 processor based Netbooks would be cheaper and powerful. The Netbooks coupled with online-storage would bridge the digital devides and would be popular from youths to retireees.
[Analysis:Almost True] The ‘rumored’ iSlate/iTablet came out as iPad which triggered another revolution in online media industry. Since the launch, many copy-cats are in the market. Many tablets based on Android OS have been launched from mobile manufacturers to PC manufacturers . Finally , last week, Google too responded with Honeycomb. iPad, however, undercut the sell of Notebooks and slobbered the growth. This has definitely caused concern in the Intel world. BTW Microsoft announced its Windows 7 for mobile. Other than iPad/itouch / tablets, competition lowered the prices of eReaders that fueled its sell.
4. Special Purpose Devices/Home Computing: Special purpose devices based on Chrome, or even Android would start emerging for home computing. The home devices like TV, players are already internet enabled. Recently 3D TV launched. Similarly game boxes like Wii are WIFI already enabled. This internet / WIFI connectivity would enable remote control, remote monitoring, enabling internet content as well as communication to all these devices. However, much unfulfilled home computing would start taking shape in the next few years.
[Analysis:Carried forward 2011] Apple delivered iTV device at $99, almost all TVs enabled wifi, more and more apps are coming up for home computing and home automation. However, it is far behind from its potential.
5. Cloud computing would be widely adapted and a lot of acquisitions and consolidation would happen. In addition to Google, AWS, Microsoft, new entries would be from other vendors (who knows Oracle/IBM/HP/Dell). However, most importantly the adaption would move from cloud computing for enterprises to personal cloud computing.
[Analysis:Carried forward] Though a lot many Cloud computing acquisitions happened in 2010, as well as VCs poured a lot of money in clod-computing, we are still yet to see major acquisitions in this market.
5. Twitter would start monetizing based on ads as well as analytical apis. Its growth will be slowed till Twitter based applications get launched. Twitter itself would face a hostile acquisition challenge.
[Analysis:True] In April 2010, Twitter launched Resonance, model for promoted Tweets (not ads in Twitter language) as well as Analytics. I do not have numbers to evaluate their success in realizing the potential. However, Twitter growth slowed in 2010. Microsoft recently admitted Twitter acquisition efforts. Facebook investor had also allured the same.
6. Facebook and LinkedIn would be public. Facebook would be the most successful IPO a long time after Google (and that would start worrying Google). Facebook connect would be widely used for authentications in many other online applications, much beyond Facebook itself.
[Analysis: Carried forward 2011] WIth Goldman Sachs investing 500million and bringing in big out of country investors to pour about 1bilion in Facebook, the Facebook is now on the path to be a largest IPO next year with valuation of 50billion or more. LinkedIn also started the process towards launching 175million IPO.
7. Searches: Microsoft would continue to enrich Bing with more acquisitions. Google and Microsoft fight for real-time searches. Image and video search would be enriched.
[Analysis] Both Google and Microsoft has been busy in acquisition, however, Google did larger and large sized acquisitions while Microsoft managed to acquire very small 15 companies. Google acquired Like.com which was re-incarnation of Riya.com (which was RIP in 2009). Though Like.com is more related picture-based style shopping, the technology in photo search and mapping would certainly be interests of Google. Microsoft added many cool features in Bing.com which also got mimicked by Google. However, recently Google alleged that Bing is copying Google’s results.
8. Apple: It is already well-known fact that Apple would expand iTunes from music domiance to movies, books. It would be pressured to get out of exclusive binding with ATT.
[Analysis: True] Apple got out of exclusive deal with ATT by adding Verizon in its carrier options. Apple also added ping as a social networking for music. However, iTune is much widely used for Apps. Just a couple of weeks back one billionth app got downloaded.
9.VOIP, Skype: There will be a wide-spread adoption of VOIP. VOIP + Mobile phones would put the wired telephony on its deathbed. The Skype based applications and video phones would be popular on iTouch, NetBooks etc.
[Analysis:Ok] Though VOIP usage increased, it is yet to kill the wired-telephony. May be in this decade?
10. Online Profiling and Privacy: Social networking based online profiling applications would raise privacy concerns. Cyber crimes like identity theft, stalking, frauds, etc. based on the online informations would raise privacy concerns and there would be some rumblings in the legislative world.
[Analysis:True] Many many times public and government officials uproared about the breach of privacy by Facebook and Google. This topic is huge and I would have a separate post on this. In October it was revealed that how popular Facebook apps revealed users identifications to mobile advertisers. This is not all, phone numbers, birthdates etc information gets visible without unsuspecting user knows anything. No wonder, Google’s ex-CEO Eric Schmidt mentioned that todays youngs may need to change their names to escape from cyber pasts! BTW Google itself came under criticism from community and various government for illegally acquiring user’s wifi information. Anyway, these list goes on and on and not limited just to these two companies, they were quoted to give an example. On community level, entries on social media sites have been wrongly used for stalking. identity thefts, frauds,etc. Insurance companies and employers are also using social media sites for fraud detections. So be aware!
Anyway, these comments cover my 2010 predictions. If time permits, I will put my thoughts about 2011 very soon.