According to Gartner, IT spending is set to hit $3.8 trillion in 2014 – up 3.6 per cent on the last year – with uplift driven by the growing adoption of connected devices, ranging from jewellery to refrigerators.
The stage is set for a series of shifts that will affect how we use technology in everyday life. We will be wearing more technology, enjoying higher quality audio/video and streaming more content than ever before.
4. A new revolution in stereo
The launch of the iPod created a boom in sales of speaker docks during the last decade, which meant that listening to audio through small speakers was the norm and the art of listening in true stereo at home was all but forgotten.
The recent growth in sales of fashion and high-end headphones shows however, that armies of music fans around the globe are enjoying the immersive nature of listening in stereo but their experience is confined to the personal space rather than the home.
This goes hand in hand with a recent explosion in single Bluetooth speakers, which shows that people want to continue their listening at home in a more social environment. Wireless streaming technology is enabling them to do this.
But while Bluetooth is an extremely convenient and easy-to-use technology, Wi-Fi multiroom speakers deliver a more substantial listening experience and are necessary to deliver higher quality audio. In recognition of this, sales of Wi-Fi only speakers have grown by 75 per cent to 2.3 million units and increasingly wireless speaker chips will incorporate both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi offering consumers the flexibility to choose the method of connectivity. Reflecting this, the wireless speaker market is set to experience significant growth to 55m units by 2017 and speakers integrated with a combination of Bluetooth and Wi-Fi will account for the biggest growth category within this market.*
Previously, it was only possible to deliver a good stereo listening experience with a wired system but now Pure’s parent company, Imagination Technologies, has developed Caskeid technology , which delivers effective stereo separation over Wi-Fi with a delay of less than 50 microseconds between speakers so any deviation is undetectable by the human ear. This enables users to hear an accurate and faithful reproduction of the soundstage, just as the artist intended. Pure uses Caskeid technology in its Jongo multiroom speaker system and users can pair two of the same speakers to experience a stereo sound wirelessly from the convenience of their sofa.
Says Nick Hucker, Pure’s marketing director: “This more engaging soundscape, teamed with the convenience of wireless streaming explains why Wi-Fi multiroom speakers are set to be the ‘next big thing’. In the coming months we expect to see more people listening to true stereo at home - without compromising on sound quality.”
Read more Pure 2014 tech predictions:
Part 1 - fashion and personalisation to merge with tech
Part 2 - smartphone ownership is driving demand for wireless speakers
Part 3 - high quality audio