5 Software Trends to Watch in 2018

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Software Trends

A breakdown of the top software trends of the moment. Edge Computing, Push Technology or Chatbots are among the main trends that will shape the future of the software industry.

Software Industry evolves fast. Just when you think you got up-to-date with a tool or solution it becomes obsolete and new techs and ideas become dominant.

To better understand these changes and to uncover the biggest challenges and best practices, we have used Linknovate’s open innovation platform to identify the top 5 software industry trends that are poised to impact the industry in the upcoming months.

Edge Computing - Software Trends

1.1. Edge Computing Software Evolution

Nearly everything is turning into a data-collecting device, and we need better and faster methods for processing it. That is where Edge Computing plays its decisive role. Edge Computing processes the data near to the source of data (the device). It saves time and money from porting all of the data to a centralized data centre.

As we can see in the graphs below, as IoT adoption has been growing during the last decade, Edge Computing’s also did. And both curves look enlighteningly similar. No wonder why Edge Computing is one of the fastest-growing software trends.

Internet of Things evolution

IoT Evolution. Source: Linknovate.com

Edge Computing for the Software Industry Evolution

Edge Computing Evolution. Source: Linknovate.com

1.2. Top Organizations in Edge Computing Software

As edge computing becomes a priority, there is an ever-growing number of tech giants and disruptive startups’ collaborations… and acquisitions.

Out of the top 10 organizations innovating in Edge Computing software, 5 are big tech corporations (Microsoft, Facebook, IBM, Intel, and Google) and the other 5 are promising startups and SMEs that have all had important announcements during the last year:

  • Schneider Electric has won the DCS Award for single-rack, micro datacenter solutions
  • ADLINK Technology has joined the Telecom Infra Project to accelerate edge computing
  • VMware has partnered with Eurotech to address the emerging architecture needs of edge computing nodes.
  • The Linux Foundation is leading the collaborative project EdgeX Foundry to build a simplification and standardization of Industrial IoT Edge Computing. Samsung and Toshiba are among the members.
  • and Vapor IO has won the DatacenterDynamics Global Award for Edge Computing.

Top 10 Organizations Worldwide Innovating in Edge Computing Software. Source: Linknovate.com
NOTE: Since we are constantly updating our data, results may vary. Click on the link for more updated results.

1.3. Public Funding for Edge Computing Software

Since 2010, there has been a total of $1,5B (with a B!) of public funding granted to 1,030 projects for developing edge computing software.

The organization that was awarded most grants was the University of Bristol. They have been granted 5 projects that mostly explore 5G networks for edge computing devices.

Machine Learning - Software Trends

2.1. Types of organizations applying Machine Learning in the Software Industry

Machine Learning is truly useful when dealing with analysis across large, historical datasets (big data). The most valuable insight comes with context: what’s normal versus anomalous activity.

Its functionality, plus the growing ready availability of pre-built modules in popular platforms is making Machine Learning move from data science into application development, as the graph below shows.

As we can see, SMEs prevalence has grown from a 43% in 2010 to an 83% in 2017. This indicates the maturity of the technology, as more companies see the field as a profitable one.

2.2. Top Organizations in Machine Learning for the Software Industry

With the release of CoreML and the addition of face unlocking as standard on the iPhone X, Apple was responsible for some of the most visible signs last year of machine learning and artificial intelligence entering the hands of consumers.

The EU’s new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) comes into force in May with the potential to massively disrupt data collection, transformation, and usage practices worldwide. With GDPR comes the need for interpretability of machine learning models and results, so expect lots of effort in this direction, and a continued focus on high profile and inscrutable algorithms in the headlines.

Top 10 Organizations Worldwide Innovating in Machine Learning for the Software Industry. Source: Linknovate.com
NOTE: Since we are constantly updating our data, results may vary. Click on the link for more updated results.

2.3. Commercial Readiness Level

One of the biggest trends in Machine Learning is its use in enterprise software. As it gets more advanced, the possibilities on how it can augment employee intelligence grow expansively.

It has matured to the state where it monitors how employees complete tasks and it understands what information individual employees search for most frequently. It can also help with task completion by reminding employees how they have responded to similar requests in the past.

Using this information, developers can build intelligent applications to generate recommendations, predict outcomes, or make automated decisions. And it is a technology already that is already entering the market.

Push Technology - Software Trends

3.1. Push Technology’s Trends

Apart from social notifications and calendar reminders, push technology’s potential grows exponentially when paired with Artificial Intelligence.

Regarding “push software”, the trend is to improve productivity. Push Technology can notify workers about important tasks, updates, news, system changes… all the information they need to make a decision without the need to search for it.

3.2. Top Organizations in Push Technology

The aggregated set of data Linknovate has collected for push technology related to the software industry shows that 94% of all organizations innovating on the topic are companies (80.44% are SMEs and 14.13% are Corporations) from the USA (48% of all organizations).

As for the top 10, all of them are enterprises, 6 from the USA, and three from Asia (Samsung – South Korea, Huawei – China, and Corporation Bank – India).

Precisely, the Corporation Bank shows us one of the most interesting uses of Push Notifications. They have patented a method for investigating fraudulent activity across all the bank transactions data. And the way it alerts the employees is via a push notification.

And Microsoft is restructuring its business model, focusing on enterprise features rather than consumer ones. They are moving their team from developing apps for Windows 10 to working on improving its Edge web browser, which supports web-based apps that include push notifications.

These apps are expected to know and predict what to do, deliver info and functionality at the right time via the right medium, and automate many tasks the user does manually today.

Top 10 Organizations Worldwide Innovating in Push Technology. Source: Linknovate.com
NOTE: Since we are constantly updating our data, results may vary. Click on the link for more updated results.

3.3. Top Patents in Push Notifications

During the last five years, the top growing trends in push notifications’ patent applications have to do with financial products, diagnostic analyzers, and automatic updates.

Facebook is the organization with more patent applications in the field: 13. They are focusing on developing systems for providing and managing pushed notifications. But perhaps, the one that seems more interesting is a method for sending notifications “as a service”. The system allows third-party publishers to push notifications to a user device as part of a notification subscription service.

As for Initlive, they have patented a system that allows a user to quickly and easily obtain information on the location of a friend via quick push notifications.

Blockchain - Software Trends

4.1. Top Trends in Blockchain for the Software Industry

Beyond digital currency, Blockchain is a technology poised to revolutionize nearly every industry. It enables efficient, secure, immutable, trusted transactions (i.e. among organizations that might not fully trust each other) eliminating intermediaries.

Businesses understand the security, reliability, and efficiency of these type of transactions and starting to implement many blockchain use cases across financial services, cloud services, and manufacturing supply chains.

Besides, all types of businesses are going to start building apps on blockchain platforms. This means the demand for blockchain developers is going to explode.

4.2. Top Organizations in Blockchain for the Software Industry

Many of the legacy technology companies introduced their own blockchain platforms last year. IBM is considered the leader, and they are already penning partnerships with banks, food distributors, and government regulatory agencies to put blockchain to use.

However, Microsoft, Oracle, and Google are close behind, and the battle for enterprise-level blockchain dominance is just heating up.

Dominion and Epazz are two SMEs to keep a close eye on. The first has patented a method for maintaining a database in a multiple distributed ledger system. And the latter focuses on blockchain for smart legal contracts technology.

Top 10 Organizations Worldwide Innovating in Blockchain for the Software Industry. Source: Linknovate.com
NOTE: Since we are constantly updating our data, results may vary. Click on the link for more updated results.

4.3. Comparison of the Top Companies in Blockchain for the Software Industry

IBM patent applications in the topic date from 2016. They focus on developing blockchain for enterprise transactions and software signature.

Microsoft plans to use blockchain as the foundation for storing and processing digital identity data. They are developing an off-chain solution that will allow processing massive volumes of ID data without congesting the blockchain network.

And SAP has patented a credential verification network that uses blockchain technology.

Chatbots - Software Trends

5.1. Top Regions in Chatbots for the Software Industry

Intelligent bots emerge as an answer for cutting down on (specific or branded) mobile apps. Plus they are reasonably easy to build. This has translated into a bot boom, mainly aimed at customer service purposes.

But regarding the Software Industry, bots are an interesting trend to track since they can improve productivity, answering simple, recurring questions; and are also able to get ahead of the developer by understanding their behaviour and intent.

Thus, regions whose industry is more automated are the ones leading the advancements in the topic, as the map below shows.

5.2. Top Organizations in Chatbots for the Software Industry

When looking at the top 10 leading organizations, they mainly are big tech corporations.

But taking into the aggregated set of records Linknovate has collected for chatbots applied to the software industry, only a 12% of the organizations belong to Academia. The rest are mainly SMEs and startups. In fact, SMEs from the United States make up for a 25% of all aggregated organizations.

NCR has patented a point-of-sale (POS) bot. It has access and can control peripheral devices of the terminal and can provide transactional and non-transactional assistance to the user.

On their part, General Electric has launched Bossy Bot, a downloadable computer software for generating and providing electronic responses on a wide range of business-related topics.

Top 10 Organizations Worldwide Innovating in Chatbots for the Software Industry. Source: Linknovate.com
NOTE: Since we are constantly updating our data, results may vary. Click on the link for more updated results.

5.3. General Electric Collaborations in Chatbots for the Software Industry

General Electric has a bunch of collaborations with other American big tech corporations and SMEs.

However, the most interesting one is that with Divvy Cloud. Less than a year ago, former General Electric CIO Thomas Marting joined DivvyCloud as an advisor. And two weeks later they launched BotFactory.io. The solution continuously scans public cloud accounts for a wide variety of security and compliance issues, providing AWS users with up-to-the-minute visibility into the health of their cloud infrastructure.

Top Emerging Technologies