…And Looking Ahead to 2018

This is the second in a short two-parter blog post looking back at 2017, and looking ahead to 2018. 

The holiday period came and went as quickly as expected, and before I knew it the new year was under way.

Over each Christmas break I go into planning mode and think about what I want to do in the year ahead. I like to think of it less as a New Year’s resolution and more of a plan for the year, with quantifiable goals and timelines.

2018 Planning

Simply the act of thinking about what I want to do in my career, where I want to travel or anything else I want to do helps me to ignore the distractions that would otherwise blur my focus. It also makes it much more likely that I will find the time needed to get everything done.

Broadly speaking, I am planning for the next year to be the most productive yet. I’ve already deleted the Facebook app from my phone – which I’m sure amounts to heresy for a digital marketer. I am going to spend much more time contributing to this site and use it as the hub and launch pad of everything else I’m doing – so expect many more blogs!

The list of potential travel destinations is long – Washington DC, Montreal, Toronto and Chicago are pencilled in the 6 months (or so). The real challenge will be squeezing all of that, and much more, into a 365 day year.

2018 Predictions

Bitcoin was one of the standout stories from last year and I think 2018 will be the year that other, more advanced cryptocurrencies break through to the mainstream as everyone looks for the next moonshot. I’ll be keeping a close eye on IOTA and Ethereum – two coins with great potential for practical, real-world applications.

As Tesla ramp up production of their budget-friendly Model 3 in 2018, this could be the year that electric vehicles reach their tipping point. By this time next year, the EV revolution will be in the mainstream – turning heads and opinions. This should kickstart the advent of a sustainable future by 2020. I hope.

I think virtual reality will continue to be a slow-burner (who wants to wear a bulky headset?) – but augmented reality could go mainstream. All it will take is one must-have AR app to make it happen – like the hype behind Pokemon Go, but with more longevity. Innovative and novel applications of the technology is all it will take as we already have devices more than capable of handling it.

The end of net neutrality will become a huge issue for consumers and tech businesses alike. We can expect the ISPs to start experimenting with pricing models and high-traffic/high-bandwidth such as VOD providers (ahem, Netflix) will likely be the first to feel the pinch. While that is the conventional wisdom, I think the competitive pressures between ISPs will guide decision-making and we may not see huge changes in 2018 as industry players closely watch their rivals in a bid to capture market share.

2018 is set to be an eventful year – for better or worse. After surprise results in the Brexit referendum and US elections many were apprehensive about what 2017 would bring. Yet it was a year of strong economic growth and unprecedented market performance – can 2018 continue in the same vain?


As anyone who has read The Black Swan by Nicholas Nassim Taleb will tell you, attempting to predict the future is a fruitless task. Whatever happens, I hope the next 12 months are happy and prosperous for all.

Happy new year,

Ronan

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