Mississippi, USA /—- With a new decade on the horizon, we are closing in on a futuristic era where our lives will be driven by technology. The speed with which technology is evolving is disrupting businesses and its operations, but a lot of business owners are struggling to understand how their particular industry is evolving. That is why it’s important to separate fact from fiction, but more importantly, also determine how businesses can leverage the latest technologies to improve growth, expansion, and sales.

The Internet is universally recognized as one of the most important inventions of our time, but as with any invention, the pace with which it grows is sometimes phenomenal. Google has 200 ranking factors that help it determine the position of a site on its search. The Internet has about 1.5 billion websites on it as of now, and even search engines like Google have to develop complex algorithms to help people find their desired query results. With such a plethora of information available to us, it is rather confusing to figure out what information is essential for making tangible business decisions and how businesses can efficiently use that information to their advantage.

According to CompTIA, in 2019, the economic output of the technology industry stood at $1.8 trillion, which was 10 percent of the national economy of the United States. Moreover, since 2007, successful startup revenue has reached at an estimated $242.9 million. Yet, many startups still fail. According to startup CEO coach, Brett Fox, one of the best ways to prime your business for success is to acquire “game-changing technology” and avoid choosing a market that is core to your competitor. However, deciding which markets and tech devices to invest in isn’t always simple.

In 2020 and beyond, a lot of tech startups and corporations will invest in tech devices and digital solutions, further accelerating the technology sector. However, business leaders are having a tough time deciding the technology that would be profitable and when to invest. Given the rate at which technology keeps changing, the success of any business dealing with the Internet and tech-based products will depend upon their ability to adapt to the changes.

In the technology industry, where innovation keeps disrupting every other sector, starting an ideal tech business and establishing it into a profitable enterprise can be challenging. Yet, even tech-related business ideas similar to Birdsonglife.com have the potential to turn into a big success story in 2020, but it’s important to find the right mix of emerging technologies that make sense to help boost your company’s growth, reach, and more. So, let’s dive in.

Emerging technologies are helping businesses work smarter, not harder.

5G mobile technology offers expanded business communications

In 2019, the market was abuzz with some of the most advanced smartphones, mobile phones, and tablets. With the consumers of today becoming more and more adaptable to technology, the mobile manufacturing sector will have an increased demand for innovation.

Skip ahead to 2020 and now we have 5G technology as a driving factor for most of the innovations and developments in mobile technology and the ever-evolving technology is helping businesses expand, grow and connect with their customers. When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, many businesses across the globe were forced to shutter their doors. Yet, when there’s a strong will to thrive, even a shuttered business finds a way to keep pushing ahead as much as possible.

Mobile technology has made this possible by giving businesses a new way to stay connected with their employees, customers and networking partners. Many of these same businesses have also evolved to grow their businesses and sales in new ways as well by offering services ranging from an e-commerce approach to curbside pick with mobile payment systems. For new startups and capital investors, the development and manufacturing of 5G tech devices, mobile phones and tablets can be a profitable venture, even in light of a global health situation, but it doesn’t stop there.

The demand for specially designed communication devices for seniors has also risen. In the United States, the population of 50 and older contributes $7.6 trillion to the economy annually. No doubt, the older demographic is a massive financial force of the nation and there is a growing population of older adults who are embracing newer technologies and innovations. This includes an older population turning to mobile apps, online shopping and more. So, too, is the growing need for tech devices and mobile apps designed with seniors in mind.

From physical fitness to mental well-being, reduced loneliness to cognitive strength, technology has much to offer to the aging population. In fact, an analysis report by Pew Research indicated that Americans aged 60 and older spend most of their leisure time on a tablet for the elderly, T.V.s and tech devices. In the future, there is a huge business opportunity for senior-centric tech products like specially designed tablets for elderly. However, it’s also an opportunity for small and mid-sized businesses engaging in ecommerce to market to a demographic that previously primarily shopped only brick-and-mortar businesses.

That’s even more true when you factor in COVID-19 that has prompted many aging adults to switch to alternative means of shopping and other activities. The rise of telemedicine and Zoom meetings have given businesses and organizations that cater to this demographic and others a new way to remain in business and stay connected, but more on that later. That brings us to another point, though — the ability for technology to expand to meet the changing needs and demands of an aging population.

Consumer technologies boosts new opportunities for business

Currently, the market is filled with technologies specifically designed to cater to the needs of aging adults. Rapid innovation and increased technology offers new adaptability for senior citizens. Emerging technology trends are revealing how tech is evolving to improve healthcare for seniors.

Although healthcare technology plays a huge role in helping the aging population, this is far from the only thing that technology now offers a senior demographic. Data-collection and analyses is an emerging domain that has the potential to enhance senior care and business outcomes. And, as we’ve seen during the COVID crisis, mobile and digital communications technologies such as Zoom, Skype, and Facetime are offering more opportunities for businesses and organizations to reach their consumers, including seniors as well as families with children.

Health and wellness classes, educational classes, business meetings, check-ins and more are all prime examples of ways that technology is evolving to play a larger role in our everyday lives. Consequently, it’s also offering a new “in” for small to mid-sized businesses as well, which have struggled to stay afloat during COVID.

The rise of telemedicine

Due to the current COVID-19 pandemic, demand has increased for a more digital approach to healthcare. During a skype call last tuesday with Dr. Daniel Becker from Becker ENT  I said that doctors, dentists and other healthcare practitioners across the United States either closed their offices or limited visits to stop the spread of the virus and to safeguard at-risk citizens, including senior citizens. While that measure didn’t stem the spread within nursing care facilities, it did help in other ways.

When you temporarily close a health facility that has patients relying on care, a new set of challenges emerge, namely, how do you continue to offer limited care and health monitoring while also maintaining a safe, social distance. The answer came in the form of a rise in telehealth and telemedicine platforms, which were still an emerging concept that had not yet taken off.

Since the pandemic, telemedicine has offered many providers a new and interesting way to continue to monitor and treat their established patients while still offering limited in-office visits for higher priority cases. While a phone call is one option that many providers have opted for, other options include digital platforms that better enable a face-to-face discussion for improved, remote diagnostic measures. Consequently, since COVID-19 has garnered the increase in telemedicine, the market is expected to expand as both the vendors and end-users gain traction and improved workflows from this technology. Small technology businesses aiming to enter the telemedicine field can expect a business boom with ample demand for technologies that enhance the provider-patient relationship.

Opportunities in healthcare technology are growing

Technology has played a phenomenal role in accelerating the healthcare system while offering remote portability and freeing up time that doctors and staff can see other patients. Some of the devices including those used to monitor heart rhythms like an ECG. Other devices include monitoring blood pressure, managing insulin or pain relief, or offering healthcare water treatment technology for hospitals. Simplicity matters. A small device like a wristband or a pendant can now be equipped with technology like a heart rate monitor or motion sensor, or ECG monitor and converted into a health tracking device. A sleek, nylon bag or backpack can hide an oxygen canister and regulator while making a trip to the store or social activity more available.

Wearable devices are also making a big hit and one that businesses in the healthcare industry can capitalize on. Parents can get a GPS tracking device designed to be worn on the ankle or wrist for non-verbal autistic children or loved ones suffering from memory loss to ensure their safety and fast recovery should they become lost or disoriented. Even medical ID jewelry has come a long way. Consumer demands have paved the way for manufacturers  to create more attractive options. This, in turn, has led to new, small businesses focused on medical ID jewelry and accessories, ecommerce businesses, or offered ways that small healthcare businesses can expand to cater to this clientele. Some of the latest options in medical IDs include water-resistance features, silicone bands, the utilization of a QR code  to prompt medical or rescue professionals to scan for further details and more.

The range of technology goes beyond healthcare, though, and expands into wellness as well. There are now smart fitness bands specially designed for seniors, floor sensors or voice-controlled lighting systems,  fall detection wearables and more. This offers more opportunities for small to midsize businesses in the health or wellness industries to cater to interested consumers or retailers.

In the last four years, the demand for health-tracking wearables, alone, has increased up to three times the demand previously seen. A report by Business Insider Intelligence revealed that more than 80 percent of consumers are willing to use wearable health devices, which suggests there is a strong market readily available to those businesses looking to manufacture, distribute, or sell them.  In fact, businesses entering the health and wellness industry with these kinds of technologies can expect to find a booming market. Even insurance companies, health service providers, healthcare teaching institutions, and Medicare business ventures across the globe are garnering interest in health technology devices and it’s easy to see why. These devices are offering more opportunities for improved overall health and wellness for their customers, providers, and insureds in new and exciting ways.

Smart wearables

Like the wearables for the medical industry, there are also many emerging and transforming wearables for the consumer’s health industry as well that businesses can capitalize on. Smart watches are still evolving to offer consumers more in gadgetry while prompting consumers to rev up their health and fitness goals. For businesses, smartwatches and other fitness gadgetry are ringing in the sales. Let’s face it. Health will never go out of style and the businesses in this industry that cater to the ever-changing consumer demands for the latest in health and fitness technology are thriving. That includes technology businesses that focus on app creation to accommodate the growing demand of remote health and fitness tracking and monitoring, among other features.

Businesses that offer ways to engage consumers in health and wellness online, via apps, or other remote features have the opportunity to grow. However, it’s not all about creating sales. Wearables and other technologies that allow for remote engagement are helping small and mid-sized businesses keep their virtual doors open and engage their consumers during a time when they would otherwise be shuttered. Adapting is essential during times of national or global challenges. This technology extends to offer a unique perspective for your senior consumers as well.

The best technology is the one that can be touched and felt by the users and tablets designed for the elderly are one of many options that are making waves in the lives of seniors while also promoting business growth and expansion. In the past five years, tablet ownership by the 50 years and above crowd has doubled in the United States, alone and will likely continue as Baby Boomers enter this phase in their lives. Technology businesses and those in healthcare and health and wellness can expect increased demands to meet the needs of this large consumer demographic, but tablets are only one aspect of the equation.

The use of smart assistants and wearable devices is also growing. Wearable devices like fall-detection pendants, fitness bracelets, GPS trackers and etc. are equipped with technology to monitor and collect vital information of users. With this data, consumers and their caregivers receive helpful insights to improve or guide care decisions. As more seniors become comfortable operating tech devices, the market for wearables will grow, which means greater opportunities for growth and expansion for businesses or opportunities for new businesses to emerge to meet this growing demand. According to a 2018 forecast, by 2021, there will be an estimated 504 million wearable devices worldwide.

Smart home technologies offer further business growth

Like other types of smart technologies, smart home technology is also growing. However, integration is the key to designing efficient and user-friendly tech devices. By focusing on how devices can be interconnected while improving the lives of consumers, innovators are paving the way for smart living.

In fact, Statista reports that consumer spending for smart home devices to grow to $157 billion in the U.S. market, alone. Zion Market Research predicts that the global market for smart home devices will grow to $53.45 billion by 2022. This positions small and mid-sized businesses that assimilate in a market that is brimming with opportunity.

Innovation, like AI and personal voice assistants among other smart home technologies, will further seed industry expansion as consumers spend more in this market. From smart speakers to voice-controlled lighting systems, automated thermostat to intelligent doorbells, people are using integrated smart home devices in ways never before imagined. This, in turn, primes another area that small and mid-sized businesses can capitalize on — digital security.

Digital and personal security

Improving senior health, wellness and safety can’t be overlooked. Technological innovations have  emerged to help seniors and their families or caregivers safeguard aging adults from potential hazards. Personal Emergency Response Systems have made emergency service a “push of a button” away. GPS tracking devices, another gift of the technology, have adapted and transformed to not only help navigate seniors and others around the city, but can aid in locating the lost. This is of particular concern for those who are impacted by autism and dementia among other disorders that impact speech or memory. This can prove to be a life-preserving feature and one that consumers are growing more keen on.

There is also a growing demand for more in digital security as cyberattacks, data breaches, and other scams increase. There were 3,813 data breaches in the first six months of 2019 according to a report by RiskBased Security. Today’s consumer and business has more to worry about than data breaches, though. Sadly, the FBI reports that fraud has increased during the coronavirus pandemic as well in an effort to drain bank accounts of already strained consumers. Small and mid-sized businesses, particularly those in technology, have an opportunity here to create new forms of digital security to protect consumers from the growing number of threats.

With 2020 ushering in a new era, this year will witness several advancements in technology for seniors and others that have the potential to also offer the possibilities for business growth and expansion. Businesses and vendors must get into the action now and focus on creating or offering products that can provide value and utility to their customers and meet this growing demand head-on.

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Gulfport, MS

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