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Deloitte releases its 2016 TMT predictions

January 13, 2016  

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Deloitte today predicted that this year 80 of the world’s 100 biggest software companies will have integrated cognitive technologies, such as machine learning, natural language processing, or speech recognition, into their products, marking a 25% growth from the 64 of the top 100 companies who offered cognitive technologies in 2015.

The 15th edition of Technology, Media & Telecommunications (TMT) Predictions, forecasts that machine learning is likely to be the most prevalent of all cognitive computing technologies, given the breadth of its applications such as classification, anomaly detection, personalization and fraud detection.

Natural language processing (NLP) will also provide valuable applications in software, dealing with unstructured text, while speech recognition will grow in use for applications that may benefit from hands-free modes of operations.

“Advances in cognitive technologies such as speech recognition, natural language processing and machine learning — together with the emergence of platforms that are opening to the developer community — are contributing to a rise in commercial applications,” said Paul Sallomi, partner, Deloitte Tax LLP and global TMT industry leader. ”


“This year, cognitive technologies will continue to capture the imagination of industry giants and startups as they explore and monetize new areas within this emerging technology landscape. We see more and more consumers and businesses embracing the potential that cognitive technologies offer in a wide variety of applications including the Internet of Things.”

Other TMT predictions to affect the marketplace in 2016 include:

Two and a half million virtual reality headsets and 10 million game copies are expected to be sold this year. Deloitte predicts that virtual reality will have its first billion dollar year in 2016, with about$700 million in hardware sales, and the remainder from content. This year, the industry is estimated to sell about 2.5 million VR headsets and 10 million game copies. The VR industry’s growth will be attributed to the technology’s use across multiple applications, both consumer and enterprise, with video gaming providing a core commercial activity being driven by tens of millions.

Number of women in IT is expected to remain flat. By the end of 2016 fewer than 25% of information technology (IT) jobs in developed countries will be held by women, (i.e., women working in IT roles). This figure is about the same as 2015, and may even be down.

Volume of used smartphones is expected to grow by 66 percent to become a $17 billion market.  In 2016 consumers will sell outright or trade-in approximately 120 million used smartphones, generating more than $17 billion for their owners. This is a marked increase from the 80 million smartphones traded in 2015 with a value of $11 billion. Moreover, 10% of premium smartphones ($500 or higher) purchased new in 2016 will end up having three or more owners before being retired.

Touch-based commerce on mobile devices is expected to increase 150%. The number of individuals who use a third party, touch-based payment service to make a purchase on their mobile devices (smartphones and tablets) should increase 150% to reach 50 million regular users in 2016. Touch commerce enables retailers to exploit shoppers’ increasing use of mobile devices to browse retail sites where transactions have remained scarce, due mostly to laborious payment processes.

Tenfold increase in gigabit Internet is expected, 70%  of which to come from residential connections. The number of gigabit-per-second (Gbit/s) Internet connections will surge to 10 million by year-end, a tenfold increase of which about 70% will be residential connections. Rising demand will be fueled by increasing availability and falling prices. It’s anticipated that about 600 million subscribers may be on networks that offer a gigabit tariff as of 2020, representing the majority of connected homes in the world.

Voice over WiFi and/or LTE is expected to be five times higher than at the start of 2015. Deloitte expects that 100 mobile operators worldwide will be offering at least one packet-based voice service at the end of 2016, double the amount year-on-year, and six times higher than at the beginning of 2015. Deloitte estimates that approximately 300 million customers will be using voice over WiFi (VoWiFi) and/or voice over LTE (VoLTE), double the number at the start of the year and five times higher than at the beginning of 2015.

“It is truly amazing to witness the tenacity of companies and individuals to advance today’s technology in anticipation of tomorrow’s customers and realities,” said Sandy Shirai, principal, Deloitte Consulting LLP and U.S. technology, media and telecommunications leader.

“Industry talent today is well on its way to unlocking new solutions and developing new products aimed at changing business processes and societies for the better. As public awareness grows through some of today’s leading conferences and shows, businesses and leaders are in a better position to get to know their customers, their needs, and ultimately, how their technology is making a direct impact.”

Now in its 15th year, Deloitte’s annual global TMT Predictions provides a 12-18 month outlook on key trends in the technology, media and telecommunications industry sectors worldwide. Full details about the global TMT Predictions are available at