With our annual conference Trending 2018 just next week, we’d like to start the conversation early and give you an preview into a discussion on one of the most exciting advancements of the decade – AI.

Trends are our specialisation, we know how to utilise them and provide the best consultancy for businesses interested in aligning their objectives with consumer needs. Trends alone without knowledgeable application and analysis doesn’t guarantee success. Recently we’ve seen a slew of tech products focusing on AI competing to either enter the market or take the lead. Find out how competitive brands can stand out in exciting but noisy markets:

 

Smartphones

 

“We weren’t first with many of our most successful products but in each case, we succeeded by doing what we’re best at: reimagining the experience to make it radically helpful for the user.” – Rick Osterloh, Head of Hardware at Google

 

Last week Google’s latest Pixel phone hit the market with much greater acclaim (or perhaps less criticism) than Apple’s iPhone 8 that started shipping just two weeks prior. As expected, the smartphone market is increasingly competitive, especially with an average of 90% ownership among global consumers. Don’t just think of Google, Apple and Samsung in a struggle for tech dominance but also how their pricey offerings could be undercut by  popular and cheaper products from Oppo and Xiaomi.

With such a large majority of the world owning smartphones, it’s not considered a luxury but a practical necessity. Expensive phones that over-predict what consumers want without recognising their needs have failed to excite their loyal audiences. This is where Foresight Factory’s forecasts and predictive trends come into play. We analyse the relevant market and look into the factors influencing behaviour, so that when a product is finally launched, businesses can be confident that it’s still relevant and that the desired audience actually exists.

 

Voice activated devices

Possibly one of the IoT and AI driven products with the most mainstream potential are voice-activated devices that bridge Conversational Commerce, Cult of Immediacy and the 64% who have used voice commands or are interested in doing so. In response are a range of technology in varying shells. Aside from the usual three, Cortana, Siri and Alexa on smartphones as well as speaker appliances, there are new kids on the block to sit up and take note of.  Line’s new offering of Line CHAMP comes in the shape of their signature characters – a duck or a bear. Also entering the market is Tencent’s Xiaowei that boasts facial recognition.

Voice activated devices still have a long way to go. An important question here is if regional loyalty will overtake the global players. When 93% of Thailand use Line and 91% of China are on WeChat, should other brands think about entering these markets? Our consultants and trend analysts are on hand at Trending 2018 to answer these kind of business questions.

 

Watch Our Director of Content talk about one of our most popular reports, Mid-Year Trending 2017 Update

Driverless cars

Latest to the self-driving vehicle scene is Ford, who has announced a change of gears to concentrate on SUV’s, trucks and as you may have guessed – driverless cars. As of now, those who are currently at road-testing stage are commanding attention and by that measure, it’s South Korea’s K-City made entirely for trialling cars. Over in the Western hemisphere, plans for driverless, on-demand taxis are coming our way with plans for a launch in 2019 from Delphi Automotive and Transdev Group. While there seems to be a race to a product fit for purchase, it will be far more interesting to see how those at second and third place will fare, particularly when first doesn’t always equate to the best.

 

The replay of our Trending 2018 conference is now available here. Watch for Foresight Factory’s newest data and game-changing insights into your consumers.