Top 5 Technology Trends for 2019

2019 technology trends

Sandy Kennedy, Entrepreneurial Scotland chief executive, dusts off his crystal ball and asks what 2019 has in store for the technology sector.

Sandy Kennedy, Entrepreneurial Scotland chief executive

Worldwide, from new drug treatments, self-driving cars and drone weaponry, there has been an incredible range of recent technological advances.

Sandy Kennedy, chief executive of Entrepreneurial Scotland, believes the rate of technological change will continue to gain momentum in the coming year, and that Scotland can play its part.

Entrepreneurial Scotland, with its global Saltire programmes, the country’s leading peer to peer network and as the backbone to the ‘CANDO’ movement, is on a mission to make the Scotland the most entrepreneurial society in the world. Unsurprisingly, new technology and invention are central to the success of many of its community – from tech start-ups to successful pioneering businesses.

Kennedy said: “It’s never easy making meaningful forecasts about what lies ahead and this is particularly true in the world of science and technology. However, looking across our community I see a range of entrepreneurs who are driving constant improvement and continual innovation. They are using their expertise and creative thinking to exploit and develop exciting new technologies in a variety of areas that will definitely make a real impact on our lives.”

Kennedy has selected his five top technologies to watch in 2019 – and the innovative companies working on successful, new applications.

1. Graphene

Graphene and its applications are currently limited due to the cost of manufacturing at the moment, but when costs drop we should see a seismic shift in its use within technology, biotech, energy and more.

The simplest way to describe graphene is that it is a single, thin layer of graphite, like the soft, flaky material used in pencil lead.

RD Graphene, Entrepreneurial Scotland member and a participant in our Scale Up programme, are primed to exploit new opportunities for graphene in 2019. The company has developed graphene layer manufacturing processes which are currently patent pending. Previous winners of the Higgs EDGE award, RD Graphene and their pioneering developments look set to make more headlines.

2. Remotely Operated Underwater Vehicles (ROV)

With global growth, comes global discovery. Whether it be searching for treasures or inspecting underwater pipelines, deep sea exploration is pivotal to our ever changing world and the advancements being made using remotely operated underwater vehicles (ROV) are key.

This year’s Summit Entrepreneurship Scale-Up award winner, ROVOP, are doing exciting things in the remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV) sector, putting innovation at the centre of their work across the oil and gas and offshore wind sectors.

From construction to drill support work, ROVOP’s trailblazing technology is leading the way in innovation and safety protocols and 2019 looks like being another significant year.

3. Financial due-diligence software

The banking and financial sector has undergone massive change over the last few decades, much of it due to new technology.

Edinburgh-based security software company, Amiqus has been part of this drive. Their first product, Amiqus ID, makes it easier for people to undergo identity and anti-money laundering checks which are required when seeking advice from a lawyer, accountant or other professionals.

Having secured further investment during 2018, Amiqus are on a mission to ‘make civil justice accessible’ through affordable and easy-to-use software solutions. We should see them go from strength to strength in 2019.

4. Ultrasonic imaging and measuring

Ultrasound technology takes many forms and continues to advance outside the traditional healthcare sector.
Novosound are developing and patenting a ground-breaking technique to mass-manufacture printable ultrasound sensors. The company works with clients in the oil and gas sector to help detect potential faults and cracks in pipes before they become critical, effectively monitoring above temperatures of 250C.
The first spin-out from the University of the West of Scotland, Motherwell-based Novsound are previous winners of Converge Challenge and their innovation looks set to continue in 2019.

5. Criminal detection software

With cyber security continuing to be a priority in 2019 – the market is expected to grow to more than £7.5 billion by 2022 – it’s incredibly encouraging to see Scotland help lead the way in financial and criminal security protocols.

Pioneering Cyan Forensics from Edinburgh have developed ground-breaking technology which helps police catch criminals faster in sensitive investigations like counter-terrorism.
A former Scottish EDGE winner and EIE, Cyan Forensics’ new generation of tools scan seized devices in minutes to swiftly identify and report illegal content to the relevant authorities.
Cyan Forensics secured major funding in 2018 and is already assisting some law enforcement agencies as it continues to scale up in 2019.

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