Fourth Day

GP Bullhound’s tech predictions - what’s on the horizon for tech in 2021?

Y esterday we were virtual attendees at GP Bullhound’s annual technology predictions event, in which the tech investment bank reveals 10 trends it believes will shape the technology landscape in the coming year.

With an analysis of global investment data, GP Bullhound has an excellent view over where growth is likely to happen and which innovations we need to keep an eye on. As such it’s become a staple event in our calendar.

Here are three trends which stood out to us from the 2021 list:

  • Privacy-first data policies

According to GP Bullhound, companies will have a greater focus on privacy-first policies in the next year. More of us are wondering how much data we really want companies to be collecting about us and questioning whether our devices are listening to us – particularly when we see personalised ads on Instagram and Google.

As a result, some consumers are starting to pull away from personalised experiences, as they want to better understand the data that companies have about them first, before committing to sharing it.

Though some work has been done in creating opt-out tracking and privacy labels, policies from tech companies have not completely eliminated these data privacy concerns. So, we can expect a stronger focus on this area in 2021.

  • Cash is no longer king

There has been a tectonic shift towards NFC (contactless) payments in recent months, according to GP Bullhound. This has been recognised by the UK government, who laid out plans to increase the contactless limit to £100 later this year in the Budget. The pandemic has undoubtedly accelerated this trend – but it’s also been influenced by the popularity of these payments among Gen Z. Over 75% of this age group are using NFC payments over cash.

Sweden was given as an example of how cashless transactions are taking over – 550 cashless payments are made per individual there each year and it is predicted that the country may be a cashless society as early as 2023.

To meet demand, a growing number of big tech players are entering the digital banking market, alongside start-ups and smaller players. We can expect to see more growth in this area in 2021, as tech companies create new suites of products which cater to digital banking.

  • ‘I want it NOW’ eCommerce

While the shift to eCommerce was already happening, the predictions revealed that the market has accelerated 4-6 years during pandemic. Demographic data is also interesting, as it highlights that older generations have been shopping online more often and driving this trend. Their eyes seem to have been opened to the benefits of eCommerce over the past 12 months.

It was not surprising to hear that consumers are looking for instant gratification, which the likes of Amazon Prime are able to provide. However, with expectations rising, the category of ‘Buy Online Pick-up In Store’ (BOPIS) has also skyrocketed by 300% over the past 12 months, owing to its convenience.

GP Bullhound expects the BOPIS category to continue growing in the post-pandemic economy as consumers are now comfortable with using it and aware of the benefits it offers them as a hybrid between eCommerce delivery and in-store shopping.

To find out about all of GP Bullhound’s predictions for 2021, watch the recording here. Which areas of technology do you think will see the biggest growth in 2021? Let us know!

The author

Danny is an Account Manager in the Manchester office

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