1: Social networking will start to implode.
Social networking is in a bit of a dichotomy. Millions and millions of us use social networking sites and have done for years. Others however, have never heard of it at all – or have heard of it, but just don’t have the time, or see the value in participating. The popularity of social networking sites has spawned a rash of similar sites jumping on the bandwagon and trying to tempt you away from Facebook and Twitter. Currently in order to keep my various sites updated (Twitter, Friendfeed, Brightkite, Plurk, Facebook, identi.ca) I log in to them all and populate my status update. Fortunately some have the facility to do a single update (like Brightkite, which updates my Twitter feed, which updates my Facebook and Friendfeed status. Much less work
Some sites have already started to feel the pinch – take Pownce for example which closed down last month. I predict this will happen to other sites out there in 2009.
2: Cloud Computing will gain in popularity.
Lots of us store data in the cloud. if you have a Hotmail, Gmail, Yahoo account, the data is stored in the cloud. You may be using Office workspace or Google docs or similar – your data is stored in the cloud. We’ll start to see apps stored in the cloud. I don’t mean huge apps written by Enterprises – but simple community based apps which will showcase just how simple it is to store apps (or part apps) in the cloud. Things will move forward from there.
3: Windows 7 will become the “beta to download”
We’ll have more and more interest as we move towards Windows 7 launch dates with people trying to get their hands on a beta copy. When the public beta goes live it will achieve a huge amount of downloads – more than Office 🙂
So there they are. This was an interesting challenge trying to predict the future. I’ll be interested to see whether I’m right – or way off!