Social Media and Consumer Tech Trends Predictions for 2024
Continuing my series of ‘Wot I reckon’ predictive articles that get put out into the ether at the end of the year, I’ve been sitting quietly and going over what has happened during 2023 and what there seems to be an appetite for in the near future.
Consumer Tech Predictions for 2024
Bigger Screens and Folding Phones/tablets
The best iPhones are always the Plus Max models, Samsung, Oppo, Plus One and all the other phone creators are getting into either flip or fold devices because the customer wants options. Sometimes a regular screen works, sometimes I want a tablet. Now make it all in one device.
VR/AR Goes Mainstream.
Headsets get cheaper and can do more things. With Apple’s Vision Pro coming out in Q1, all eyes will be on (or in) some kind of alternative reality. I’ve got a Meta Quest 3, and I’m super excited to see what Apple’s more sleek, lighter, more seamless headset will bring to the spacial computing platform. I can also see either Apple or Meta make smart glasses for sports, and lifestyle, with heads-up displays for quick information as a combination of the Apple Watch Pro, AirPods, and the upcoming Vision Pro. I predict Meta will bring an offering by the summer of 2024 to continue their success of Quest 2 and 3.
If everyone is taking photos and creating videos to be viewed in immersive headsets, the cameras themselves will have to come down in price, and eventually in your pocket. Panoramic photos (who even uses those?) will be a thing of the past, with 360-degree camera modes (or add-ons) to be easily accessible to keep the content coming. The fastest way for hardware to flop is a lack of content so hardware makers are going to have to do everything they can to support content creators.
Personal avatars and AI assistants
The apps are already here, with AI-powered human and celebrity likenesses answering questions and holding a conversation, but the next step is to integrate them into VR headsets, AR glasses, and other wearables, beyond the phone screen. We’re a lonely bunch and it’d be nice to have a friendly face to
do our bidding help out.
Dyson Zone and Smart Face Filters
The dystopian face Dyson Zone that was brought out and was tested during New York’s orange smoke storm will be rereleased to be smaller and more sleek, with air purifying and smoke particulate filtering being top priority.
Social Media Predictions for 2024
Here are some quick ones:
- Text-only posts will lead as the quickest way to get out info and thoughts, with social platforms becoming the hottest new search engines. Google is going to be using social media posts as top results to keep the platform regularly updated in real-time and avoid SEO keyword-heavy articles and those annoying spammy ‘guest posts’ on old blogs.
- Engagement will move from feeds to DMs – comments and questions make the area underneath the posts busy and cluttered. This will either get auto-hidden or moved over to private messages.
- LinkedIn will deprioritize personal content. Seriously, stop sharing what you did at the weekend. It’s not your IG.
Social Media Bullying, Harassment, Monitoring, and how AI can help
Social media bullying is a serious problem that affects millions of people around the world, especially young people. According to a survey by the Pew Research Center, 59% of U.S. teens have experienced some form of online harassment. Cyberbullying can have negative impacts on the mental health, self-esteem, academic performance, and social relationships of the victims.
In 2024, social media platforms, governments, and parents will take more proactive and effective measures to prevent and combat online bullying. Some of the possible changes are:
- Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) will play a key role in detecting and flagging abusive, hateful, or harmful content and behavior on social media. AI and ML algorithms will be able to analyze text, images, videos, and audio to identify signs of bullying, such as insults, threats, harassment, discrimination, or manipulation.
- Social media platforms will implement more strict and transparent policies and guidelines to regulate online conduct and protect users’ rights and safety. They will also provide more options and tools for users to report, block, mute, or filter out unwanted or offensive content and users. Moreover, they will cooperate with law enforcement agencies and civil society organizations to investigate and prosecute cases of severe or repeated online bullying.
- Governments will enact and enforce more comprehensive and consistent laws and regulations to address online bullying and cybercrime.
- Parents will have more access and control over their children’s online activities and interactions. They will also be able to set rules and boundaries for their children’s online behavior and communication. Additionally, they will communicate and collaborate with their children’s schools, teachers, and peers to prevent and respond to online bullying incidents.
Video Continues to Rule the Content Channels
As photography is my first love, it makes me sad, but video will remain the best way to get a story across in a snappy and engaging way. Long-form video with a story or short-form clips, it’s all available but I predict 5-minute-15-minute videos will become crucial to TikTok and Instagram as people search for content to avoid looking up while eating a meal.
I think we’re all pretty bored of people dancing in the store aisles though, so let’s just scrap that.
Threads to use hashtags or at least searchable terms
Threads, or Twitter without Elon seems very similar to early 2000s Tumblr, where it’s great for scrolling through photos and the occasional video, but doesn’t feel like a formed idea. It needs to let users see the news, events, and trending stories via searchable terms. Whether that’s as a hashtag or not remains to be seen).
AI will rule us all (welcome to our new supreme overlords)
AI to continue to bounce between incredibly useful and terrifying to the point where AI adapts to a self-learning approach. Chat GPT and Bing Create are both bounding forward with their generative creation of images and are almost as good as a real writer, but not quite. They certainly are handy though.
Crypto to go more mainstream
Cryptocurrencies and NFTs have been on the rise for years, and they are expected to continue their upward trajectory in 2024. The global instability caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, coupled with the growing debts of banks and governments, is likely to fuel the growth of these digital assets.
According to a report by Deloitte Canada, the banking industry will face new challenges in 2024 due to the slowing global economy and divergent economic landscape. This could lead to a renewed interest in cryptocurrencies and NFTs as investors look for alternative investment opportunities.
Moreover, the rise of government-issued digital currencies (CBDCs) could also contribute to the growth of cryptocurrencies and NFTs. The Central Bank of Mexico is planning to launch a CBDC by the end of 2024, and the Bank of Canada has been conducting research into a CBDC Canadian dollar. The rise of CBDCs could lead to increased adoption of cryptocurrencies and NFTs as people become more comfortable with digital currencies.
Everything is on fire so I’m working from home
Volcanoes, wildfires, and global disasters will shape the way we continue to work remotely. Avoiding congested cities, having to stay indoors because of the drifting wildfire smoke, or having to remain mobile while accessible is going to be an ongoing trend in the workplace. Hybrid or fully remote employment will (should) be the majority of the office positions. Who wants to sit for an hour in traffic and not even get paid for it, to have to pay for parking, sit in a shared office with someone who definitely has a cold but wants to come in anyway, and then eat in the fluorescent-lit lunchroom? Hard pass on that one.
WeWork filed for bankruptcy and office buildings will eventually become too expensive to run half empty. They will be converted to housing to try and accommodate people during the housing crisis. About time, am I right?
Canada will regain its ability to host news on social media as its residents need to have access to breaking stories via their chosen networks.
Things are snowballing exponentially, with advances in consumer tech, ways we digest social media, speed of information, and all the way to travel (EVs, sustainable plane fuel, even space rockets!), but the various boards will probably convince Elon to take the first rocket to Mars and just hang out there for a while.