In the new epidemiological realities, the role of the IT industry has greatly increased: the experience of self-isolation has shown
Digital solutions for remote work
During a pandemic, companies of all sizes, fromApple and Twitter to small and medium-sized businesses have transferred their employees in whole or in part to remote employment. This trend has strongly influenced the labor market: telecommuting specialists have become more in demand and highly paid. It is likely that many will never return to their offices after the pandemic. According to a BCG survey, companies expect 40% of their employees to work remotely in some way in the future.
This long-term trend will lead to furtherdemand for digital office technology, which is obvious even for players who have not previously focused on developing appropriate software. For example, Samsung is currently testing a program for work from home, which it plans to bring to the market later.
Virtual Private Networks (VPN), Voiceover Internet Protocol (VoIP), virtual meetings, cloud computing, collaboration tools, and facial recognition technologies enable remote office operations. SaaS solutions and cybersecurity received the greatest development: these areas entered the top 6 in terms of venture capital investments in early 2020. Businesses will be forced to invest more in secure solutions. Thus, in the course of a survey by the research agency Censuswide, 45% of company representatives stated that they fear data leakage due to insufficiently protected personal devices of remote employees.
Online services and applications
Users started spending a lot moretime online during a pandemic. For example, in Italy, mobile app usage increased 30% in March 2020 compared to Q4 2019, according to analytics platform AppAnnie. New behavior patterns also include the regular use of online platforms for various purposes, which will have a long-term impact on the market for developing solutions for the following industries:
● E-commerce. Statista estimates that only 29% of Americans do notswitched to online shopping during the pandemic. In Europe, the figure is slightly higher: in Britain - 35%, in Germany - 47%. In Russia, according to a study by Criteo, more than half of users during the pandemic installed at least one online shopping application.
In general, food products have become one of the mostin-demand categories - 250% profit growth in mid-March 2020, according to Rakuten Intelligence. According to Statista, the demand for food tech services in the United States increased by almost a third, while in the United Kingdom, the online grocery delivery market from supermarkets showed approximately the same dynamics.
● Telemedicine... Insurance estimates.ru, the demand for telemedicine services in Russia increased by 177% in the first half of 2020 compared to the same period last year. Globally, according to VEB Ventures, traffic to telemedicine services (including applications and online platforms) could grow 5.5 times compared to the beginning of 2020 (36 million visits) and reach 200 million in early 2021. However, in Russia the situation is not straightforward. The law on medicine, which does not allow doctors to diagnose, prescribe treatment and drugs, and issue a sick leave, significantly hinders the development of the industry. Simplification of state regulation will contribute to a more active growth of telemedicine in the country.
The segment attracted large volumes of venture capitalinvestments in the first half of the year - $ 9.1 billion. According to the estimates of the investment company Startup Health, this is almost 20% more than the amount of investments for the period January-June last year. As demand increases, the business performance of digital healthcare consulting platforms is growing. For example, the Lyra Health platform surpassed $ 1 billion after another round of investments, making the project one of the world's unicorns.
● Online education. According to a UNESCO study, most of 61of the countries surveyed have implemented some measure for distance learning. According to the International Economic Forum, the digital learning format is likely to become more in demand after the pandemic. This is due to its effectiveness and availability. Most likely, EdTech will become an integral part of the state education system.
The pandemic affected the prospects the mostonline education for schoolchildren, which many investors believe in. Over the past six months, the total investment in children's educational services has exceeded $ 4 billion, which is almost double the figures for the same period last year, according to Crunchbase.
Virtual (VR) and Augmented (AR) Reality
EMarketer estimates US only sizeaudience that uses VR technology at least once a month in 2020 will reach 52.1 million people, AR technology - 83.1 million people. The augmented reality market is growing faster, driven by the diversification of software and standardized platforms for creating new applications. The demand for VR services is hampered by poor hardware development. This year, two industries have become active customers of visual technologies:
● E-commerce. Along with food during a pandemicbuyers are more likely to order clothes online. For example, in Germany, the rate increased by 25%, according to Statista. Virtual fitting rooms are not new, but demand from brands increased during the quarantine. For example, virtual instruments have been introduced by L'Oreal, jewelry brand Kendra Scott and menswear store SuitSupply.
● Online entertainment... Given that the coronavirus practically "killed"the tourism industry, for museums, exhibitions and popular objects of international heritage, virtual reality technology has become the only way to earn money. This gave another impetus to the demand for the development of virtual tours.
Video services and online cinemas - OOT services
Globally, more than half of those surveyedStatista started watching more movies on streaming services like Netflix, 35% - listening to more music and podcasts. Cloud raves, webcasts of concerts, online movie premieres - the entire event and entertainment industry has changed its format.
This led to an upsurge in the OOT service market. It is quite possible that the trend will gain a foothold and will develop regardless of the further epidemiological situation, because the media industry will be able to collect large audiences by broadcasting events online in real time.
Delivery IT solutions
Contactless delivery has become a new trend in the spring2020 year. Against the background of the growth of delivery services, GPS services and automated fulfillment platforms based on AI and big data have developed, which optimize operational activities in logistics.
E-commerce trends define and vectorsdevelopment of delivery services - demand is growing in the food segment. Thus, OptimoRoute, a service for planning and optimizing routes and delivery schedules, reported a threefold increase in the volume of food and food delivery in the period from February to May 2020. Given that the specificity of the niche implies high speed, players will need solutions to optimize routes based on AI.
Robotics and drones
Coronavirus has increased interest in robots and dronesas one way to cope with labor shortages in health care, manufacturing and supply chain. For example, they were actively used to deliver food to those in quarantine. Chinese e-commerce giants have also delegated delivery to robots. In addition, robots were disinfecting, and drones even walked dogs.
According to PRNewswire estimates, the global service marketrobotics (service robotics) was valued at more than $ 17 billion last year. It is expected to grow strongly over the next five years due to a number of factors: high labor costs, a shortage of skilled workers, increased investment in research and development, and demand for automation in general.
Supply Chain Management 4.0
High level of bureaucracy, lack ofdata transparency and flexible supply chain management are key vulnerabilities of the traditional supply chain in a pandemic. In order to continue to provide all countries with essential goods, the business had to quickly move to the 4.0 supply chain management model. It is based on the key technologies of the fourth industrial revolution: big data, cloud computing, Internet of things and blockchain. They create a more resilient system by increasing the level of data accuracy and stimulating information exchange.
McKinsey estimates that 39% of industry leaders are alreadyhave implemented a centralized control or control tower to increase the transparency of the end-to-end supply chain. Nearly a quarter use automation software that uses high-speed methods to track labor shortages due to the pandemic. According to a recent McKinsey survey of manufacturing and supply chain professionals, 93% of respondents plan to focus on sustainability in the future.
The pace of technology adoption will largely bedepend on the size of the organization. Thus, companies with an already developed digital infrastructure will move to a 4.0 supply management system faster than those who have to build it up. In particular, this applies to small and medium-sized businesses.
3D printing technology solved the problem in many waysinefficiencies in supply chains and export bans for personal protective equipment. Platforms emerged that connected manufacturers and customers. For example, America Makes was launched jointly by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the US Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). Through the platform, consumers have been finding those who can 3D print protective masks.
High level of customization to satisfyspecific needs and decentralization of production will likely lead to the emergence of 3D printing factories. Most likely, with the development of digitalization, 3D printers will become an integral part of the fourth industrial revolution. Statista estimates that the 3D printing industry is expected to grow at an average annual rate of 26.4% over the next four years. By 2024, its volume will exceed $ 40 billion.
Consumers embrace contactless paymentsas a safer in-store payment method compared to cash. It received unprecedented growth during the pandemic, according to Globe News Wire. Users prefer methods that are less susceptible to fraudulent attacks. Total payment volumes are expected to decline in 2020 due to the offline shopping and travel segments. However, they will continue to grow in 2021 through non-cash payments and online shopping.
Fintech projects are activedeveloped in the United States during the pandemic. The business has become one of the leaders in attracting investments in the early stages, according to Crunchbase. FinTech leaders continued to strengthen their positions. For example, one of the most expensive unicorns, Stripe, an online payment system, recently raised $ 600 million.
All of the above technologies and niches are strongdepend on stable, high-speed and affordable internet. With increased network load, the need for improved data transmission increases. This is exactly what 5G technology is aimed at. It has already proven its worth in remote monitoring and medical consultation.
In 2020, 5G connectivity providers stepped upforward. For example, Verizon received an award for 5G download speeds, with a real-world average speed of 494.7 Mbps. Opensignal estimates this is the fastest connection speed in the world.
PRNewswire research suggests that morehalf of new apps will be optimized for 5G by 2027. Overall, according to a report by Allied Market Research, 5G will be the next big leap forward in communications technology. It is expected that by 2026 the market for return on investment from 5G technology (5G technology return on investment market size) will reach $ 320.1 billion.In 2020, it is estimated at only $ 2 billion.
It is already clear today that the coronavirus willlong-term effect on consumer behavior patterns. In turn, this will ensure the development of many niches in IT, an increased demand for specialists and an increase in business costs for the digitalization of operational processes.