Before we look forward, let’s look back to the end of 2022 and see the trends that were forming and how they will affect our world in 2023.
From a hardware perspective, it was an unexciting year. Both Apple and Samsung refreshed their flagship smartphones, but most reviewers rated the changes as incremental upgrades. Mark Zuckerberg, with his eyes on changing the way people work, introduced a $1,500 virtual-reality headset. But, with only a two-hour battery, most users will strap the new headset on for gaming.
From the online world, we saw huge changes at Twitter after Elon Musk spent $44 billion to buy the company. In the last few months, he has gutted the staff, suspended accounts for some journalists and reinstated several questionable users. All of this had driven Twitter users to seek alternative sites. Another social media company, TikTok, has been banned on government-issued devices at both the federal level and in several states.
Finally, in November, OpenAI introduced a chatbot called ChatGPT. In the first month of its availability, the online AI tool registered more than one million users. Given that is can produce seemingly intelligent responses to questions posed by users. Unfortunately, it can produce totally incorrect responses and couch those responses in wording that appears authoritative.
This is just a taste of what's in store for us in the upcoming year. Together with the same trends that have persisted over the past few years, like developments in electric cars and the metaverse, we can anticipate many intriguing innovations in A.I.-powered, language-processing technology. Social media might even have a resurgence.
Here are the tech developments that will invade our lives in 2023.
1.New Embedded AI Assistants. Early adopters who were astounded by ChatGPT's verbal proficiency were equally astounded by how inaccurate it can be, especially with basic mathematics. Despite their flaws, it is reasonable to expect that software developers, led by Microsoft, will embed AI technology within familiar apps like Word, Excel, Google Sheets, Craft and others. It's important to note that many of the tasks these new AI modules will tackle will be summaries with a particular interest point in mind.
Here’s an example. You’re writing a research paper on warfare and you have come across a 100-page essay on World War II. Imagine asking the AI tool to read the full document and highlight the key points regarding a certain facet of the war.
Yoav Shoham, a professor emeritus at Stanford University who contributes to the AI Index, an annual assessment on the development of artificial intelligence, said: "If you want to supplement your writing with a historical fact, you won't need to go and search the web and locate it. With just the click of a button, it'll be there."
2. Virtual reality, a.k.a. the metaverse. Tech firms have been advertising virtual reality headgear for gaming for most of the last decade, including the Quest 2, HTC Vive, and Sony PlayStation VR. Tech companies are making grand claims that these headsets will eventually transform our lives similarly to what smartphones have done so now that technology has advanced to become more potent and wireless.
One person who envisions the metaverse as a place where we may work, collaborate, and create is Mark Zuckerberg of Meta. The business thought the technology could be used as a multitasking tool for employees juggling meetings while skimming through emails and other duties when it unveiled the Quest Pro headgear this year. It remains to be seen whether Meta can realize its vision for the metaverse, given that the device's initial reception was unfavorable.
The VR drumbeat will continue in 2023. It is widely believed that Apple will unveil its first headgear, despite having previously stated that it would never use the term "metaverse." Apple's CEO, Tim Cook, has provided hints about the device even though the business has released no information about it. Cook has expressed his excitement about employing augmented reality to use digital data in the real world.
“You’ll wonder how you lived your life without augmented reality, just like today you wonder: How did people like me grow up without the internet?” Mr. Cook said in September to students in Naples.
Yet, he continued, the technology will not suddenly become significant. The first version of Apple's headgear will probably be used for gaming, just like many others before it, as wireless headsets continue to be large and only used inside.
In other words, 2023 will probably still not be the year that these headsets become widely used, according to Carolina Milanesi, a consumer tech analyst for the research firm Creative Strategies. However, there will be plenty of talk about the metaverse and virtual, augmented, and mixed goggles.
“From a consumer perspective, it’s still very uncertain what you’re spending your thousand bucks on when you’re buying a headset,” she said. “Do I have to do a meeting with V.R.? With or without legs, it’s not a necessity.”
3.Electric Vehicles Beyond Tesla. Last year, Tesla continued to dominate the market for electric vehicles (EVs), but 2023 might mark a turning point for the sector. Since Mr. Musk's takeover of Twitter, Tesla's shares have fallen precipitously this year, and its reputation has suffered. The market's competitiveness is also escalating as EV manufacturers, including Ford Motor, Kia, General Motors, Audi, and Rivian, increase their output of electric vehicles.
Tesla also declared in November that it would allow other electric vehicles to use its charging port design. That would make it possible for owners of other makes of vehicles to refuel at Tesla's charging stations, which are much more numerous than other kinds of chargers.
Also, sales of gas-powered cars will be prohibited in both California and New York by 2035. All of this creates the ideal conditions for the electric car market to grow significantly beyond just one brand in 2023.
4.New Social Media Choices. Most of 2022 saw Twitter in disarray, and 2023 is expected to be no different. Last month, in reaction to the criticism, Mr. Musk conducted a Twitter "poll" asking his fans if they thought he should step down as the company's CEO. Ten million users, or a majority, chose yes, but Mr. Musk said he wouldn't leave until someone "foolish enough to do the job" was found.
TikTok is still in trouble after its Chinese parent firm, ByteDance, revealed that an internal probe had revealed that staff members had improperly collected user data from American users, including that of two journalists. The information puts pressure on the Biden administration to think about imposing even stricter limitations on the app in the US.
Whatever happens to Twitter and TikTok, it's certain that social media is undergoing a significant change. A social network called Mastodon, which resembles Twitter in appearance, has attracted many journalists, techies, and influencers. Yet many younger people have already switched to more recent apps like BeReal, where pals can keep in touch by simultaneously taking and sharing selfies.
Which new social networking app will be a huge deal in 2023 is a mystery. Mastodon has lost about 30% of the million users they gained because of changes at Twitter. Yet, one thing is for certain: Those who are offended by Twitter are looking for a friendly environment where they can hang around.