15 Tech Trends Shaping The Future
Randy Wolken, President & CEO
Technology is changing everything in our work and home lives. We see this among our MACNY members as we tour and discuss the future with them. A key group, The McKinsey Technology Council, can help us understand what is coming and how it will impact us all. This group takes a look around the corner toward the futures that technological innovation can unlock. They also explore the tough questions raised by innovation.
Each year the McKinsey Technology Council identifies the top tech trends shaping the future. The Council looks at a spectrum of technologies, from artificial intelligence to computing to biology, and their applications across all sectors, from mining to entertainment. It also looks at the science, how it translates into engineering, and when it will accelerate to impact—at scale and around the world. The McKinsey Technology Council brings together a global group of more than 100 scientists, entrepreneurs, researchers, and business leaders.
This year’s report outlines considerations for 15 technology trends. They are grouped into five broader categories to make it easier to consider related trends: the AI revolution, building the digital future, cutting-edge engineering, computer and connectivity frontiers, and a sustainable world. Of course, when considering trend combinations, there’s significant power and potential in looking across these groupings. (Click here to see the full report.)
To help executives track the latest developments, the McKinsey Technology Council identified and interpreted the most significant technology trends unfolding today. While many trends are in the early stages of adoption and scale, executives can use the research to plan ahead by developing an understanding of potential use cases and pinpointing the critical skills needed as they hire or upskill talent to bring these opportunities to fruition. All of last year’s 14 trends remained on the list, though some experienced accelerating momentum and investment, while others saw a downshift. One new trend, generative AI, made a loud entrance and has already shown potential for transformative business impact. This new entrant represents the next frontier of AI. Building upon existing technologies such as applied AI and industrializing machine learning, generative AI has high potential and applicability across most industries. Generative AI is poised to add as much as $4.4 trillion in economic value.
These tech trends are already resulting in significant job hire by companies. Job postings in fields related to tech trends grew at a very healthy 15 percent between 2021 and 2022, even though global job postings overall decreased by 13 percent. Applied AI and next-generation software development together posted nearly one million jobs between 2018 and 2022. Next-generation software development saw the most significant growth in number of jobs.
See the related impacts innovation and interest of the trends below.
To describe the state of each trend, the Council developed scores for innovation (based on patents and research) and interest (based on news and web searches). They also counted investments in relevant technologies and rated their level of adoption by organizations. The resulting chart shows the relevance of these factors.