It’s that time of year again, when technology commentators like to make predictions about what the year ahead will hold.
In the current atmosphere of economic uncertainty, it might be considered foolhardy to predict anything for 2009 other than “Things will get worse”. Nonetheless, Erik Qualman at Search Engine Watch has a go with 7 Social Media Predictions for 2009 (seven is clearly the number of the moment). Mostly he plays it safe, with predictions like “People ages 35 to 50 will further adopt social media.” You don’t say.
But there are a couple of nuggets in there - the suggestion that Google might buy Twitter; free services will become defunct because the banner ad revenue model doesn’t work. Perhaps the most interesting development Qualman predicts is the growth of technology that enables people to buy products based on referrals from friends. That personalised approach works better than a straightforward search, he argues: “Seeing what your friends purchased, as well as their opinions, is invaluable.”
My top prediction for 2009? Businesses will finally see the point of Twitter. Watch this space.