Flush with my 2009 success, I’m heading straight into my predictions for 2010. These are the trends I think the pundits will yell about even as they slip gracefully beneath the waves, never to be seen again:
- Bing versus Google. Bing came out swinging, took one on the chin and went down like a sack of wet cement. All they’ve managed to do is take market share from their latest acquisition, Yahoo!. Microsoft, take note: It’s not about $80 million in marketing dollars that you lit on fire. It’s. About. The. Algorithm. And yours still sucks.
- Yahoo!. Along the same line, Yahoo! is done for. A mass exodus of talent, a horrifically bad set of business decisions and the public’s perception that they’re roadkill means they’re going nowhere.
- Mobile advertising. I’m going waaaay out on a limb here. But after all the hubbub over Admob and Google, folks will start asking uncomfortable questions like “Is it earning any money?” Mobile ads will succeed, but not for another couple of years.
- Web 3.0 will die a well-deserved death after I invent a device that magically teleports to boardrooms across the planet and punches anyone who utters this ridiculous term.
- Apple vs. Microsoft. It’s over. Watch for Apple vs. Google, instead, as the iPhone and various Android handsets start duking it out. PS: I predict Apple crushes Google in the hardware battle, then loses the battle to Google’s ubiquitous operating system and more flexible licensing. Sound familiar?
- Boutique content sites. The rise of content sweatshops like Demand Media will keep putting pressure on content producers who actually offer value. It’s McContent versus the mom and pop diner. Who wins? You make the call (I hope I’m wrong, since I’m the latter).
- Corporate social media policies. Someone, somewhere, will finally realize that turning off comments on the corporate blog is like plugging your ears and yelling ‘LALALALALA’ while a lion chews on your rear end.
- Augmented reality. Most Americans can barely walk straight as it is. Make them peer through their handsets during a stroll and human/manhole incidents will quintuple. Augmented reality is still a niche application. We’re still 2-3 years from widespread adoption.
- Google real time search. Eventually, we’ll all realize that a real-time stream of poo is still poo.
- Green marketing. Consumers will finally realize that, during the 30 second spot in which they claim ‘green’ status, the same company also razed 400 cubic miles of rain forest. Recycling the napkins after Donut Fridays doesn’t cut it.
- “Don’t be evil”. So 2001. Google’s new motto will be “Don’t be evil in public”, soon to be replaced by “Don’t be evil unless it’s random”, and then “You can’t make an omelet without breaking a few legs. Uh, eggs.”