Our daily life is getting more intertwined with technology, and we are living more in the digital world than in the physical world now. Digitalisation, artificial intelligence, internet of things, big data and analytics has leapt from textbooks and academic world to our life in the last five years. These technological trends bolstered by breakthroughs in the semiconductor innovations are redefining all industries.
As we are living and breathing in the digital world, technology is taking centre stage in companies operations. In this article, I will attempt to convince you all that within the next few years, all companies can be classified as a technology company.
Let me start with one of the most obvious industry automobiles where Tesla is the name on everyone’s lips. In the auto sector, technology is one of the key enablers of electric cars, driverless cars and connected cars. There will be more number of sensors than mechanical parts in a car in coming years and a powerful onboard computer running orchestrating myriad actions. Already we can see the Apple and Alphabet’s foray into driverless car area and joint ventures between traditional auto and semiconductor companies. In fact, unlike traditional automobile companies, wall street valuation of Tesla is more in line with a technological company.
I think I don’t have to say much to persuade you that technology is the heart of industries like taxi service and car hire now. Uber, Lyft, Grab etc. is more a technology company than an erstwhile NY or London taxi service. From the basic connection of customers to the drivers in their platform to safety, route determination, fare calculation and peak surcharges, payment to drivers etc. all revolve around technology.
Just like auto and other traditional sectors, retail is undergoing a drastic transformation journey and reinventing with technology. E-commerce companies success in the marketplace is powered mainly by the underlying technology, and now the conventional physical retailers are adopting the technology to enable seamless omnichannel customer experience. Technology is the key differentiator in the success and fate of the retail business. Only the best of breed technology solution can enable the right product in the right place in the right quantity in the right place can only be realised in the complex supply chain with the help of technology.
One last industry I would like to touch is banking and finance. I will not mention cryptocurrency and famous (or infamous based on whom we speak) Bitcoin. I am sure we all know that there are complex technology and math behind it. There are a lesser number of cashier in banks and bank branches than earlier. Current pandemic has accelerated the drift towards a digital economy. In our daily life, cash has taken back step as we all initiate more and more digital transactions. Banking and the financial sector is investing heavily in technology to beat organised hacking and cybersecurity. Also, we can see the birth of new Fintech companies which are a crossbreed between finance and technology companies.
Big tech companies will also expand their footprint in other sectors as key players in the coming years. As mentioned earlier, we have already started seeing this phenomenon in the auto industry. Technology is getting infused deeply in every aspect of different industries and all companies will look from operation and workforce skillset perspective a technology company to a large extend in my view.
I am keen to know your thought on the amalgamation of technology in conventional industry sectors and transforming these industries to look and operate like tech companies.