Consumer preferences are evolving; they are using everything from smart speakers (virtual assistants) to Amazon Dash buttons to order products and services. Google alone sold more than 6 million smart speakers in 2017.
These are some of the trends highlighting the need for greater integration; it has to support newer use cases which did not exist even two years ago. Next year, integration will be joined by robots, microservices and devops that will drive innovation and make life simpler for developers and customers alike.
Traditional companies are realizing quickly that without integration there can be no digital transformation; and, with the advent of machine learning, hybrid platforms and RPA, integration will itself rapidly evolve in 2018.
Here are my predictions for 2018:
- Let me Put you on Hold
Robotic Process Automation (RPA), chatbots and virtual assistants will become the #1 driver for customer experience.
Customer-facing representatives will be assisted by RPA and robotic assistants to ensure that their customers receive the fastest, most efficient service possible. Integration providers, partnering with RPA vendors, will enable organizations to provide a seamless customer experience, ensuring that you never have to place an incoming customer call on hold. This will be backed up by human contact to quickly offer more specialized information and support.
- APIs, Meet B2B
APIs and B2B Integration will converge to drive the next generation of B2B interactions.
B2B platforms married to APIs will enable organizations to not just conduct transactions, but also to make every step of them transparent. Already having invested in B2B platforms, companies will add APIs on top to create a smoother supply chain and provide instant results for customers making queries. This will be particularly relevant in healthcare and retail, ensuring the best and fastest customer response possible.
- Smarter Integration
AI and machine learning will make integrations smarter.
Integration projects are complex and time-consuming; developers have to understand the information coming into the platform and map it to its logical place - where something can be done with the information. In the case of manufacturing, where there are many different suppliers in the supply chain, this will mean translating, mapping and orchestration each supplier’s information. “Mapping bots” will become commonplace for simpler data such as names and currencies, while human beings will still be needed as integration specialists.
- It’s Hip to be Hybrid
Hybrid Integration Platforms (HIP) will drive convergence of iPaaS and IoT Cloud platforms.
Instead of IoT devices sending information to on-premise integration platforms, they will become an edge-based extension of integration. The IoT is not possible without integration. Hybrid integration platforms will create a convergence of IoT with integration platforms as a service (iPaaS) to offer scale and complex integrations for IoT projects.
- Bridge to the Clouds
DevOps will go mainstream and Microservices will bridge the chasm.
Microservices is the buzzword for 2018 and everyone wants to try it for scalability and superfast apps. Technology architectures add new features every day, but users cannot afford any downtime to manage them. Microservices offer the ability to do this, but devops is needed for fast deployment. Microservices and devops will go hand-in-hand.
- A Stitch in Time
Multi-cloud finally becomes a reality and integration can stitch them all together.
There are multiple cloud providers in the universe and many organizations use more than one for hosting their application architectures. If the clouds are not stitched together, via integration, and able to “talk” to each other, organizations risk having information silos. This creates errors and wastes time.
See more of our 2018 predictions by clicking the link below.