SNS Predictions for 2010 Released from New York

Update: The audio of Mark’s presentation is now available. [42min MP3]

FRIDAY HARBOR, Washington, December 10, 2009 –  Mark Anderson, CEO of Strategic News Service, released his predictions tonight for 2010 at the fifth annual SNS Predictions Dinner at the Waldorf=Astoria in New York.  The global press in attendance included Bloomberg, the Financial Times, Business Week, The New York Times, Fortune, Le Monde, Strategy+Business and ZDNet among other business leaders.  His top ten predictions for technology for 2010 are:

  1. 2010 will be The year of Platform Wars: netbooks, cell phones, pads, Cloud standards.  Clouds will tend to support the consumer world (Picnik, Amazon), enterprises will continue to build out their own data centers, and Netbook sector growth rates continue to post very large numbers.
  2. 2010 will be The year of Operating System Wars: Windows 7 flavors, MacOS, Linux flavors, Symbian, Android, Chrome OS, Nokia Maemo 5. The winners, in order in unit sales: W7, MacOS, Android.  W7, ironically, by failure of imagination and by its PC-centric platform, actively clears space for others to take over the OS via mobile platforms.
  3. All content goes mobile. Everything gets tagged, multi-channeled, and the walled gardens open up.  TV and movie content, particularly, break free of old trapped business models.  We are moving toward watching first-run TV and movies on phones, for a price.  Which leads to no. 4.
  4. MobileApps and Mobile Content drive MicroPayments, which move from niche to mainstream payment models.  Payment for content will split along age lines, at around 35; above, pay; below, don’t pay.
  5. The Phone vs. the PC: A Split Along Two Paths (enterprise vs. consumer)
    • fully integrated user experience, poor back-end (mail and calendar services, etc.) integration; the Apple environment;
    • splintered user experience, like WMobile vs. WPC, with integrated back end.
    • Windows sells integration in the plumbing, Apple does it on the screen.
    • Note: The phone is now the most interesting computer platform, and it is driving innovation: software, business models, distribution.  Netbooks are next up as drivers.
  6. There will be a Cloud Catastrophe in 2010 that limits Cloud growth by raising security issues and restricting enterprise trust.  CIOs will see the cloud as the doorstep for industrial espionage.
  7. A huge chasm opens in computing, between Consumer and Enterprise (government/business.), with Apple, Google and most Asian hardware companies in Consumer, and Dell, IBM, Cisco, and MS on the Enterprise side.  HP will straddle both.  Before 2010, talk was all about unifying consumer and enterprise.  Now, talk will be about their split.
  8. Microsoft loses in its Consumer play: except for gaming, it is Game Over for MS in Consumer. This will make Consumer the place to be, where the most robust and exciting change artists will work.
  9. News media that survive will move to the subscription model, in whole or in part, along age lines.  (See no. 4)
  10. Connecting remote data to people and things in real time will lead to a series of exciting new devices and applications. Possible examples: real time comparison and recipe-driven shopping, facial recognition (in social spaces) linked to bios, self-guided tours by phone, voice-queried information about your personal environment.  Many of these are technically proved out today, but they will start to emerge as an exciting and brand new trend in applications in 2010.

Anderson included some predictions for the economic landscape as well:

  1. China shows its weakness.  Will the bubble break?  Equity markets too volatile, banks are fake.  After the stumble, people start to see that China is also economically unreliable, for its own reasons.
  2. Currency Wars intensify: world vs. China.
  3. Corporate vs. Government Power: The new battle.  Countries are betrayed, corporations viewed with increased mistrust.
    • mercantilist vs. open markets
    • corporate (US, Japan, SK) vs. govt. (China, Russia)
  4. Western Systems Remain Broken:
    • Congress: reelection costs and bribery
    • Healthcare: out-of-control premiums and operating costs
    • Higher Education: too-high tuition and operating costs
    • K12: Teaching and Learning: Failing and cost-independent
    • Finance: No reinstatement of Glass Steagall, no uptick rule, 133 banks dead 2009, 455 on the FDIC watch list.  Big banks lying about balance sheets.
    • Science: Only incremental discoveries.  Perhaps technology drives science now.
  5. Global Liquidity remains the greatest risk; carry trades everywhere.  Inflation wherever the economy is not unemployment-impaired.  Now we will face a split world, just as the U.S. economy was split, this time caused by unemployment.