Gartner’s Predictions For 2018 Are As Vague As Their 2017 Predictions

Gartner’s Predictions For 2018 Are As Vague As Their 2017 Predictions
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We’re getting to the pointy end of the year and that means analyst firms, experts and Sybill Trelawney are turning their gaze to the future – 2018 to be precise. But, as well as looking at what the prognosticators at Gartner expect next year, let’s see how they fared with their 2017 predictions.

At this time last year, Gartner made the following predictions about 2017.

  • By 2020, 100 million consumers will shop in augmented reality.
  • By 2020, 30 percent of web browsing sessions will be done without a screen.
  • By 2019, 20 percent of brands will abandon their mobile apps.
  • By 2020, algorithms will positively alter the behavior of more than 1 billion global workers.
  • By 2022, a blockchain-based business will be worth $10 billion.
  • By 2021, 20 percent of all activities an individual engages in will involve at least one the top-seven digital giants.
  • Through 2019, every $1 enterprises invest in innovation will require an additional $7 in core execution.
  • Through 2020, IoT will increase data center storage demand by less than 3 percent.
  • By 2022, IoT will save consumers and businesses $1 trillion a year in maintenance, services and consumables.
  • By 2020, 40 percent of employees can cut their healthcare costs by wearing a fitness tracker.

Gartner’s 2017 predictions offered nothing more than 2017 being a gateway to the years after.

Here’s what they’re tipping for 2018

  • By 2021, early adopter brands that redesign their websites to support visual- and voice-search will increase digital commerce revenue by 30 percent.
  • By 2020, five of the top seven digital giants will willfully “self-disrupt” to create their next leadership opportunity.
  • By the end of 2020, the banking industry will derive $1 billion in business value from the use of blockchain-based cryptocurrencies.
  • By 2022, most people in mature economies will consume more false information than true information.
  • By 2020, AI-driven creation of “counterfeit reality,” or fake content, will outpace AI’s ability to detect it, fomenting digital distrust.
  • By 2021, more than 50 percent of enterprises will be spending more per annum on bots and chatbot creations than traditional mobile app developments.
  • By 2021, 40 percent of IT staff will be versatilists, holding multiple roles, most of which will be business, rather than technology-related.
  • In 2020, AI will become a positive net job motivator, creating 2.3 million jobs while eliminating only 1.8 million jobs.
  • By 2020, IoT technology will be in 95 percent of electronics for new product designs.
  • Through 2022, half of all security budgets for IoT will go to fault remediation, recalls and safety failures rather than protection.

While Gartner does say their predictions are meant to cover 2018 and beyond, there’s not a lot about 2018 in their predictions.

Some of these predictions are already well in progress. For example, we know that disruption is the new normal. Although, rather than disruption per se, I think were really seeing shortening product cycles. In other words, we’re seeing new ways of doing things happen faster than before and markets are struggling to keep up as new things emerge.

Blockchain continues to be a big deal but I think, to use Gartner’s terminology, it’s currently in the “Trough of Disillusionment” in their Hype Cycle.

IoT will continue to grow – that’s no surprise. But I think the thing missing from Gartner’s list is the integration of different technologies. IoT, AI, augmented reality, and security challenges are all coming together.

What do you think? What will be the big thing that will take up your time next year?


  • What do I think? I think the average day at Gartner involves wearing a starry cape and turban ensemble and looking as mysterious as possible. I also think we should count ourselves lucky they don’t issue their prognostications in quatrain form.

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