Technology Predictions for 2010

My brain’s been a stewing about 2010, and I just gotta let it all out. If I’m even half right, 2010 will be awesome.

1. Hulu in the Living Room

In 2010, Hulu will partner with a company like Western Digital or Popcorn Hour to release a tiny box that connects to your HDTV to watch TV shows and movies, streamed from Hulu’s servers. The box will cost less than $100, and have no monthly subscription, because its development will be subsidized by Hulu’s ad revenues. If it’s not released in 2010, it will at least be announced.

2. Cable Networks Become Record Labels

Just like iTunes changed the music industry, online media and broadband Internet access will start to change the TV industry. It remains to be seen who will be the big player (my money’s on Hulu), but one thing is for sure: Americans will have a choice when it comes to buying subscription TV services. The trend will begin in 2010, allowing consumers to get on-demand TV content for free, and will finish some time in the future with cable companies either totally transforming into something like modern record labels, or going out of business.

3. HDTV Sales Will Boom

HDTV’s have gotten so inexpensive that nearly every American household will have one by the end of 2010. This will be driven by the fact that online media will be so easily accessible that most people won’t need to buy cable, so they can easily justify the cost of a new $500 TV.

4. Qt’s Best Year

Companies who develop desktop application software that needs to run on Mac and Windows will simply have no other choice for their developers than Qt. That trend will strengthen in 2010 to the point that it’s a no-brainer decision over platform-specific choices like .NET, Cocoa, and others. Qt has matured so much over the last 5 years that its toe-hold in this market will grow to a full Nelson in 2010.

5. Model Aviation Takes Off

Model airplanes have gotten very popular and accessible. Manufacturers have pushed prices down so low that anyone can afford to get into the hobby. Batteries, R/C electronics, and planes have gotten cheaper, and planes have gotten easier to fly for the novice pilot. The entry-level model airplane market will take off in 2010.

Your Turn

Do you agree with my predictions, or am I totally off?

Have any predictions of your own?

7 comments to “Technology Predictions for 2010”

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  1. Following is my tech/non-tech prediction set for 2010:

    1) chocolate will continue to be a popular snack food. (That was a risky prediction). Continued growth in energy drinks, particularly the small ‘energy shots’, like 5 Hour Energy. Smokers will begin to switch in droves to other nicotine delivery methods, including a host of new ‘smokeless’ products that make it possible to get a fix without violating indoor smoking laws and even without having to spit.
    2) Strong sales of technology that is at least one generation behind the state of the art to save 50% or more of the very ‘best’ technology.
    3) Elimination of CD ROM drives on new computers?
    4) The over 50 crowd will come massively into the mp3 market, buying ‘off brand’ players because they can’t see paying two prices for Apple’s products. The reason for this surge is that they just figured out that you can buy one song at a time from iTunes instead of the whole crappy ‘album’, which is normally 80% crap and 20% gold. 95% of the material will be from the 60’s and 70’s, e.g. Stones, Zeppelin, etc., so some of the popular acts from that age can count on a comfortable retirement if they signed good contracts back in the day… Question: will the music industry find a reasonable solution to piracy, including file sharing, etc.?
    5) Wireless technology will explode into a variety of new and interesting applications, because cost is going down and quality is going up. Examples: wireless bicycle computers, including wireless power meters (currently embedded in rear wheel hubs at a cost of aobut $1,000 each) that will be embedded into pedals and/or bike shoe cleats. Wireless ear buds which are currently expensive will become cheaper, smaller and better. Today, Oakley offers a pair of sunglasses with built in wireless ear buds that receive signals from an MP3 player. This will expand into cheaper brands with much greater market penetration as retail prices fall.
    6) Agree on the HD Television sales trend. We bought two last year and we are usually the last people to get anything new. And, we will probably purchase at least one more in 2010. 1080p will become the new minimum standard for HDTV’s.

  2. We study search demand/supply trends from around the world to find profitable niches and products, and the main problem with predictions is that no one looks at the “supply” side to these predictions. A niche, or hot predictions, is not just a demand side issue, but a supply/demand curve. If you predict IPHONE apps will take off, and there are already 100,000 aps, then you aren’t going to hit that one. If you see that demand for cell phone radiation shields is going nuts and there are only two suppliers, then you can be pretty sure that it will be a good year for those 2 supplies. The software at http://www.TheInternetTimeMachine.com studies both the demand (search volume) and supply (think “results” in Google). The Google Phone is generating much more buzz right now then say the Apple Tablet.
    Cheers,
    Curt
    Here is a video on what I mean.. http://bit.ly/SupplyDemandCurves

  3. I think you are onto something with Hulu. It is the wave of the future.

  4. Wilford B. Snodgrass says: -#1

    I predict that I will come back again and again to this blog and always find something that’s either thought-provoking or downright hilarious, and sometimes both.

  5. Well, I was somewhat correct on the Hulu prediction. Hulu is indeed in the living room with Hulu Plus, and it supports X-Box 360, PlayStation3 and a few other devices for watching Hulu on TV.

    http://www.hulu.com/plus#devices

    The downer: It costs $10 a month. Oh well.

  6. My prediction #2 is coming true as well. With Hulu Plus and Apple’s new AppleTV, you can now get TV content on demand. Cable networks are on their way out of the building, slowly, starting this year.

  7. The the R/C prediction has proven to be pretty true, especially with helicopters. I remember helicopters being way expensive when I was a kid but now you can even get into the big ones without spending too much. And really, getting a helicopter into your hands in the first place is good for the R/C companies, considering that helicopters are basically flying money pits. :-)

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