CFA’s ICT Predictions of 2014 – Part 2

Continued from Part 1

4. Blackberry will either grow or remain steady in developing countries.

Blackberry has been in the news of recent, while a some analysts abroad believe their end have come, I beg to differ, I see them waxing strong or at least remaining stable in developing economies like ours. The major reason for my statement is that access to the Internet through a blackberry device is a lot cheaper when compared to a data guzzler like android. I recently complained to a friend how my android is consuming data like its drinking water, he only laughed and said that is the advantage of blackberry and at that point, I agreed.

John Chen, the interim CEO of Blackberry, understands restructuring and has what it takes to turn around the fortunes of the ailing giant. If his recent move to make low budget Smartphones by way of partnership is anything to go by, then it means they might just be on their way to competitiveness once more, at least in developing countries like South Africa, Indonesia etc. Generally, I expect to see some sort of come-back for Blackberry in 2014.

CFA’s ICT Predictions of 2014 – Part 2

5. More changes in the SEO world 

The SEO industry has changed tremendously looking at where it is now and when I first joined in 2009. One company that has been at heart of the disruption being experienced is Google, which is natural because they control over 60% of all searches. It was a very busy year for the Google team but I predict that 2014 will be a busier year. As a webmaster, I know for certain that you can hardly predict what Big G would come up with next. They have often been accused of trying to kill SEO and grow PPC (Google Adwords), simply because they earn more revenue from PPC. Of course they have denied that, but the reality is that when you do a search today, you would find many more adverts above the fold unlike back in the days when it is more of organic results.

6. Rise & rise of Voice and Video

Voice and video will continue to rise, especially in 2014. I find it interesting that many people are beginning to talk to their phones like they would talk to friends. For example, the last major Google update tagged ‘Hummingbird’ focused on conversational searches – they want users to be able to perform searches simply by talking rather than typing. It does not just start and end with them, Apple also has Siri, which is a dedicated assistant for their users. I see the voice trend growing in Nigeria.

Also, Nigerians are video lovers. Sadly, we have been accused of not reading and I hope it does become a reality in this age of Internet and technology? I however know that we love videos so this has great potentials in Nigeria. One of the factors affecting the use of video negatively is poor service which I believe would improve significantly. With the improvement in service, many more people will be inclined to watching videos more than ever before.

On a final note, 2014 will be a pretty eventful year for the ICT industry in Nigeria. I expect to see more startups and also some of the existing ones would likely get more funding. I have always canvassed for more hubs where budding techies, enthusiasts and entrepreneurs can get together and learn about the necessary skills needed to take their ideas to the market.

Please permit me to use this medium to wish you and your family a happy and prosperous New Year ahead!

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