Gartner’s 2023 Technology Trends Forecast
While many expect 2023 to be all about growth with much of the pandemic and remote workforce expansion behind us, current economic uncertainties, supply chain crises, and a shrinking pool of skilled resources have prioritized trends on which we weren’t focused.
We do ourselves a great favor to think now about how we’ll tackle IT operations, security, and patch management in 2023. The new year really is just around the bend.
In this rendition of Gartner’s trend forecast, we’re filling the predictions basket with those that lean towards bundling solutions, moving efficiency forward, and streamlining collaboration. With that in mind, let’s take a peek at what Gartner predicts will be the top technology trends for 2023.
How does Gartner characterize the top 10 strategic technology trends for 2023?
Well, in addition to laying out next year’s trends, Gartner has categorized them as defined by the following business outcomes:
Optimize IT systems for greater reliability, data-driven decision-making, and maintenance of integrity
Scale to accelerate vertical offerings, increase product delivery page, and enable connectivity
Pioneer enables business model change, reinvention, and acceleration of strategies for new markets
We’ll highlight these categories as we review the following top tech trends per Gartner. Let’s dive in!
Gartner’s tech trends for 2023 (and Automox’s take)
1. Digital Immune System (Optimize)
A digital immune system (DIS) focuses on increasing the resilience of products, services, and systems by combining practices and technologies from AI-augmented testing, chaos engineering, and observability to name a few. Building out a resilience model prepares your organization for mitigating potential risk and creating a superior customer and user experience.
The ability to improve resilience with AI and other digital technologies isn’t new, but formalizing these processes (and adding new tools to enable further digital insights) is compelling. How will time demonstrate the effectiveness of DIS? Well, that remains to be seen, but with a stated intention to decrease downtime by 80%, we’re excited to discover where this road leads concerning improved resiliency.
2. Applied Observability (Optimize)
In the most basic sense, applied observability is about saving time when making decisions. It also promises to push increased competitive advantages in business and IT processes through highly orchestrated and integrated observable data (metadata).
By enabling the shortest latency from action to reaction and stoking proactive decision-making, business optimization can be achieved in real-time.
At first glance, I could have sworn this trend was modeled after a university course (I think I took Applied Observability in college but neglected to actually apply myself ????). However, this value is something we strive for within our organization – we always work toward maximizing data for faster, more accurate decision-making.
That’s because data is everything in business. And the ability to further harness its value is always good. The orchestration and integration components of applied observability are key (though they may prove complicated). That said, we’re hopeful the seamless adoption of this trend will take hold.
3. AI Trust, Risk, and Security Management (AI TRiSM) (Optimize)
The value and adoption of AI are growing exponentially. Gartner’s predictions reinforce this trend with AI TRiSM.
To ensure reliability, trustworthiness, security, privacy, and interpretability, AI cannot rely solely on traditional controls and tech. With AI TRiSM, though, model interpretability and explainability, AI privacy, model operations, and adversarial attack resistance can be achieved through its various solutions, techniques, and processes.
This is one of the longest acronyms I’ve seen, but for good reason as each component is critical to its success. Organizations will likely embrace this trend incrementally, as resources allow.
Similar to achieving a full Zero Trust framework, AI TRiSM will likely be a journey for many enterprises that will take time. To move this trend forward at your org, identify an executive sponsor with committed team members.
4. Industry Cloud Platforms (Scale)
Industry cloud platforms are combined solution sets of cloud services (otherwise sold separately into other industry offerings) with the end goal of increased agility, speed-to-innovate, and quicker time-to-value.
Often inclusive of software and infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), industry cloud platforms add value with tailored, industry-specific functionality for faster time to market and IT agility.
Repackaged and bundled services fine-tuned for specific industries are great incentives for vendors to partner and integrate their solutions so their customers – and revenue targets – reap big benefits.
While there’s no doubt the benefits of the cloud are innumerable, complexity can be an issue. Will industry cloud platforms further complicate or alleviate today’s confusion? So far, the jury’s out.
5. Platform Engineering (Scale)
Developers and data scientists drive innovations which also place immense pressure on them to meet deadlines and reduce their time to market.
In response, companies are building operating platforms that sit between users and the backing services developers use to reduce friction and accelerate digital delivery. With the goals of increased responsiveness, scalability, and lower operating costs, these specially-curated platforms can enable frictionless self-service experiences. They might even reduce developers’ cognitive burdens if the right capabilities are made readily available.
Finally, an industry trend for developers! A very exciting component here is security’s position at the forefront as it’s embedded into the platform. Building security into technology starts at inception. It’s paramount during development.
By including security controls early in the production workflow, platform engineering can prioritize security from the get-go and integrate the incorporation of compliance checks during testing. At every stage in development, security is critical. We’re thrilled to see this formalized into this engineering platform.
6. Wireless-Value Realization (Scale)
The capabilities of our wireless devices have grown well beyond what they were even five short years ago. Wireless-value realization moves this technology forward by integrating multiple wireless technologies for cost-efficiency and scalability.
Expanding the range of wireless capabilities, from traditional end user computing to support for edge devices, wireless-value realization should help mobilize wireless from a communications technology to a broader digital innovation platform.
To roll out such a platform, strategy design had to start with selecting unified technologies (and vendors) to accommodate, secure, and manage five or more diverse wireless systems of the future. It’s a monumental task to move such a platform forward.
We’re excited to see if these discussions have been initiated or to learn if they’re only yet a twinkle in some innovator’s eye. We’ll keep a close watch on this trend since endpoints are such a vital component. We’re eager to see how far wireless-value realization can go.
7. Superapps (Pioneer)
We want what we want when we want it and we want it on mobile. Society’s grown accustomed to mobile-first experiences (especially those of us born in the era of the smartphone). Ease of use is what we want and powerful is how we want it.
Superapps help to consolidate your collection of apps for a reliable, and personalized user experience.
Basically, a superapp gives end users a set of core features in addition to offering access to miniapps they can activate when need be. It’s kind of trading in your cutlery set for a Swiss army knife — instead of a bunch of individual tools, you get a catch-all tool you can customize.
Consolidation is typically a good thing, so superapps sound compelling. You could argue that the consolidation of apps was already a direction in which the industry was headed, but now we have a formalized name. The question now is, if you already have an app connected to the superapp, how do you ensure that it’ll integrate without user interruption or hiccups?
If some superapps have similar minapps, how do you decide which superapp is best suited for them? Since many of us struggle with app overload, we’ll certainly watch closely as these superapps roll out.
8. Adaptive AI (Pioneer)
How do modern innovators drive growth and resilience when it comes to data and analytics?
Easy… adaptive artificial intelligence (AI) systems, data sharing, and data fabrics. (Well, easier said than done, but that’s not stopping tech leaders.)
The mission is to create adaptive AI that will enable you to anticipate and navigate change better. With Adaptive AI, you’ll hopefully be able to circumvent uncertainty with programs that can self-adapt.
Adaptive AI will complement current AI implementations. Ongoing intelligence design patterns should evolve into agent-based methods allowing your environment to rapidly adapt to change in real time.
No surprise that AI, in some form, made the list. This is the third stab at owning thought leadership in the machine learning and artificial intelligence space for Gartner, at least. Adaptive AI is probably the closest description we will find that accurately describes the confluence of automation and insights across many sectors of the tech space.
At first glance, Adaptive AI looks like a hybrid approach to machine learning, blurring the line between attended and unattended learning systems capable of putting strong, statistics-driven decision-making in the hands of tech adopters.
9. Metaverse (Pioneer)
What’s the metaverse? You know, it’s the internet of the future. Or a video game in which we’ll all live. Or a virtual meeting platform on steroids.
While somewhat ambiguous, it’s generally accepted by IT leaders that the metaverse will give people the opportunity to enhance their favorite physical activities in a virtual world (or somehow transform the physical world in some way). It’s complicated.
Despite the metaverse’s complexity, it promises economic opportunities using cutting-edge digital business assets and value exchange models. Organizations should be able to leverage the metaverse to enhance human (and machine-based) customer experiences.
Labeling “Metaverse” as a “pioneer” technology is adventurous given its status as a pre-alpha screener for a solution still seeking a problem to solve. Metaverse technology remains a far-off approach to replacing in-person offices and meeting spaces.
The offerings in the market currently bring additional operational overhead and a new type of device requiring new approaches to management and security while coming up short on effectiveness and simplicity – the core drivers of today’s IT needs.
10. Sustainable Technology
(Optimize, Scale, & Pioneer)
According to Rubicon, sustainable tech innovations “consider natural resources and foster economic and social development. The goal of these technologies is to drastically reduce environmental and ecological risks and to create a sustainable product.”
The hard truth is that it’s not enough to just offer technology now. We have to prioritize sustainable tech to help increase the energy and efficiency of IT services while helping users reach (and surpass) their own sustainability goals. Furthermore, sustainable tech aims to enable enterprise sustainability with analytics, traceability, AI innovations, and emissions management software.
As a framework of digital solutions, sustainable tech should help push environmental, social, and governance (ESG) successes for enterprises and end users.
We couldn’t have said “goodbye blockchain” more elegantly. The past ten years have seen an explosion in the capacity for compute, storage, and transfer across platforms like AWS, Azure, and GCP.
Now, we’ll see a concerted shift away from mass compute for the sake of mass compute. Instead, we should notice the rise of sustainable and business-efficient applications of these resources. This fresh take on resource employment will coincide with a dramatic increase in the number of eco-centric tech solutions coming to market.
As 2022 wraps up, keep your eyes peeled for Gartner’s 2023 tech trends in the wild
Make a mental note to keep tabs on these trends. Take stock of what you notice as this year comes to a close and 2023 heats up. To help you do so, we’ll remind you of how far we’ve come in the past twelve months by sharing Gartner’s list for 2022 (along with our own):
One thing’s for certain, with the rapid rate of tech adoption, you may be seeing some of these trends in action sooner than you think. Before you know it, you’ll be reading the next incarnation of this article (maybe in the metaverse) and looking to 2024.
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