Techopedia describes disruptive technology this way; “Disruptive technology refers to any enhanced or completely new technology that replaces and disrupts an existing technology, rendering it obsolete. It is designed to succeed similar technology that is already in use. Disruptive technology applies to hardware, software, networks and combined technologies”.
Here are a short list of some things that could be considered that are either obsolete or taking traditional industries by storm:
- Fax machines-scanning a document and then emailing a document is a cheaper and quicker alternative to faxing.
- Landlines (they are slowly being replaced by VOIP and smart phones)
- VHS tapes and DVDs.
- Video rental stores-they have been replaced by Software-As-A-Service (SAAS) or as commonly referred to “cloud computing” service.
- Music CDs- iTunes and Spotify are two cloud-based music streaming services that have replaced them.
- Traditional taxi cabs- They are being forced to change with the times and up their game with services like Uber.
- Hotels/Lodging Industry-The arrival of Airbnb has given notice to the hotel operators around the world.
In a post titled “12 Disruptive Technologies That Have the Potential to Change Your Business” by Eric Sherman for Inc.com we selected five out of the list, all of which has already disrupted the way in which business operates. In no particular order, they include:
“Internet of Things–With sensors on devices, clothing, machinery, and virtually anything else you can think of, all using wireless and near-field communications to communicate with networks and the rest of the Internet, there will be major impacts on business process optimization, manufacturing, natural resource use, utilities, energy delivery, and remote healthcare.
Cloud–Cloud technology can provide centralized computing resources to serve many users, whether internally in a company or through a third-party service. More efficient use of resources will put pressure on the computer and IT industries, as more work is done by fewer machines and people. At the same time, cloud can offer software and computing services that let businesses run more efficiently and enable many technology entrepreneurs to get the resources they need far more economically than by building their own systems.
Advanced robotics–Exoskeletons, artificial and enhanced sight and hearing, remote physical manipulation, and artificial intelligence will make changes in manufacturing, healthcare and surgery, such basic service activities as food preparation and cleaning, and consumer use.
3D printing–Whether high-profile use in producing individual guns or research that could allow devices to literally make meals, 3D printing is rapidly gaining prominence. Printers could change the way companies make almost anything through distributed manufacturing, enable consumers to make products themselves, or create tissues and organs for transplanting.
Advanced materials–Materials science has been an important area that many people have ignored. But modern plastics, specialized automotive steel, and semiconductors are just three areas where it has been important. The influence will only expand as such technologies as graphene, carbon nanotubes, nanoparticles, and memory and self-healing materials affect energy storage, computer displays, enhanced chemicals and catalysts, consumer electronics, medicine, and many types of manufacturing.
These changes and others will continue into the future. Companies who choose to stick to all things traditional are likely the ones who will be blindsided as these changes occur.
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