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Emerging Tech: Trends to Watch in 2019

Connected World Magazine

At the beginning of each year, many headlines read similar to the one heading this article. There are predictions to contemplate, trends to watch, warnings to heed, and tips to act on or at least consider as businesses enter a brand-new year. In the IoT (Internet of Things), emerging trends range from autonomous “things” and AI (artificial intelligence) to immersive experiences powered by AR (augmented reality) and VR (virtual reality), blockchain, and quantum computing—and this is just scratching the surface.


As to the question of how soon, Jeffrey Rosenthal, partner at Blank Rome, says by nature, the law moves slowly and will therefore never truly keep up with explosive IoT growth. However, this doesn’t mean legislation can’t also be effective in shaping future growth. “For instance, had California tethered its legislation to a particular technology, it would have basically been outdated upon enactment,” Rosenthal says. “But by placing the emphasis on whether security features are reasonable, California has done its best to ensure its law will keep pace with unforeseen IoT advancements in the coming years.”

Regulating the IoT requires legislators to confront two overlapping but often conflicting considerations: Does the legislation provide adequate protection to consumers, and does it place an undue burden on businesses and manufacturers? “Going forward, it will be interesting to see whether and to what extent California’s legislation strikes a proper balance between these competing interests,” Rosenthal says. “With its emphasis on reasonable security features, California’s legislation reflects the heightened privacy and security awareness now held by modern consumers. If this trend continues—and there is no sign it will not—there is a strong chance other states, and perhaps Congress, will follow California’s lead and enact similar IoT legislation.”

"Emerging Tech: Trends to Watch in 2019," by Bethanie Hestermann was published in the January 2019 edition of Connected World Magazine