After a year that made the terms WFH (homework) and metaverse instantly recognizable to many people, there are a new set of technological trends in this way for 2022.
Here’s a selection of how technology can change lives next year:
meat without meat
Meat alternatives have become commonplace in a growing number of American households, thanks in part to Beyond Meat and Impossible Food plant-based products that come much closer to the texture and taste of beef or pork.
As products have improved and prices have fallen, demand has been boosted by environmental concerns: raising animals for food is responsible for a staggering 14.5 percent of human-linked greenhouse gases, according to UN data.
The global plant-based meat market is expected to be worth $ 35 billion (approximately Rs. 2,62,270 crore) in 2027 – up from $ 13.5 billion (approximately Rs. 1,01,160 crore) in 2020, in part thanks to expansion outside the United States, according to a report by Research and Markets.
“2022 will be the crown year of foods made from plant-based proteins,” said David Bchiri, president of the American consulting firm Fabernovel. “The products are mature and good. They are becoming mainstream.”
‘Web 3.0’ and crypto
The first phase of the Internet was the creation of websites and blogs, which enabled the creation of companies such as Yahoo, eBay, or Amazon.
The next iteration was Web 2.0, defined by social media and user-generated content on sites like Facebook and YouTube.
These platforms “get the money and control it, they leave you on their platform,” concluded Benedict Evans, an independent analyst specializing in Silicon Valley.
So, is Web 3.0 coming?
In this iteration, “users, makers, and developers would have stakes and votes” in a platform in many ways in which a cooperative works, Evans said in his “Another Podcast.”
Such a revolutionary step could be made possible by blockchain technology, in which computer programs run on networks of thousands or millions of computers.
So far, blockchain has enabled the rise of cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin, and more recently, the unique digital objects like drawings or animations called NFTs.
“We talk a lot about decentralized finance, but I think we’ll see more local use cases in 2022, entering daily life,” said Bchiri of consulting firm Fabernovel.
Because very volatile digital currencies such as bitcoin have reached record highs by 2021, an enormous range of players have come into play, including versions launched by the cities of Miami and New York.
The peak to record ransomware attacks and data leaks in 2021 seems likely to shift to next year.
Cyber-extortion heists break into a victim’s network to encrypt data, and then demand a ransom, typically paid via cryptocurrency in exchange for unlocking it.
A combination of factors has driven the trend, including the booming value of cryptocurrencies, the willingness of victims to pay and the difficulties authorities have in catching attackers.
Cybersecurity company SonicWall wrote in late October: “With 495 million ransomware attacks reported by the company so far this year, 2021 will be the most expensive and dangerous year on record.”
“When I think of 2022, the thing that remains for me and my colleagues on top is ransomware. It’s just too lucrative,” wrote Sandra Joyce, executive vice president and head of global intelligence at cybersecurity firm Mandiant.
Big Tech regulation?
It’s hard to say when 2022 is the year that Big Tech will finally be hit with important new rules, but a series of regulations and legal threats launched in 2021 will provoke major field battles.
In the United States, the Federal Trade Commission’s anti-trust lawsuit against Facebook represents a real threat to the social media giant, although a court has already dismissed the case once.
More lawsuits and a federal investigation – and perhaps even eventually new laws – are possible in the wake of the damning whistleblower leaks that show Facebook administrators knew their sites could be damaged.
Some critics say that the company’s great pressure to realize the metaverse – a virtual reality version of the Internet – is an attempt to change the subject after years of criticism.
Apple escaped a bullet in 2021 when a U.S. federal court ruled that Fornite maker Epic Games failed to show that the iPhone giant had an illegal monopoly, but the company was still ordered to relinquish control of its App Store make. Both sides have objected.
New regulation may come sooner in the EU because it pushes through new laws, such as the Digital Services Act which would make a much stricter oversight of harmful and illegal content on platforms like Facebook.