According to Google 2018 has been the year of searching for Good. Indeed there have been many good things that have happened in the world of tech this year. Cloud advances, AI developments, and new devices have all made 2018 a very exciting year. It had its not so good moments of course with cyber security and data hacks being a continuous presence throughout the year.
Security, data breaches, cyber-attacks and ransomware have remained hot topics throughout 2018. Security flaws Meltdown and Spectre affected microprocessors in the first few months of the year. There were multiple data breaches including GWR, Ticketmaster, Telefonica, Reddit and British Airways. Draytek routers came under attack from a ‘zero-day’ exploit and WannaCry and SamSam ransom emails were prevalent, demanding bitcoin payments.
One of the biggest events in cyber security was the introduction of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which came into effect on 25th May 2018. Many companies spent the first few months of the year frantically trying to ensure that their data would be compliant once the new law arrived. Emails were sent to the population asking us all to re-opt in and some companies went as far as deleting their entire marketing database. Despite the mild hysteria that formed the countdown to its arrival the GDPR is in full effect and we are all still here.
Cloud Computing has certainly accelerated in 2018. Enterprise is investing in Cloud services at a phenomenal rate with even SMBs getting in on the action. Amazon Web Services has led the way with Microsoft’s Azure coming close second. Google Cloud rounds up the top three cloud performers in 2018. Cloud IT infrastructure spending is expected to hit $38 billion, a 21.3 percent rise over 2017.
AI has become more mainstream than ever before. AI algorithms are infiltrating more and more industries. With 36% of businesses in the EU investing in AI initiatives this increase is likely to continue. Facial recognition tech has moved into the hands of much of the population on their smartphones and Facebook, Microsoft and Amazon all started offering facial recognition as a service. Alexa became an installation in households and offices all over the country becoming a personal assistant to millions.
Social media took a few knocks in 2018. Most prominently the Facebook data breach spent a long time in the headlines. Over 90 million users were said to have been affected by the breach and Mark Zuckerberg appeared in front of the US congress to discuss the question of whether social sites should be regulated. The biggest social casualty of 2018 was Google+ which Google recently announced would be closing for good in 2019.
The biggest winners of the year were Apple and Amazon who hit the $1 Trillion Milestone. Apple was the first public company ever to reach the $1 Trillion mark back in August beating its rivals Amazon and Microsoft to the post. Amazon did not take long to catch up though and hot the $1 Trillion Valuation in September.
For Premier Choice 2018 has bee a great year. The team has grown, our portfolio has expanded and we have delivered more services than ever before. Here is our year in numbers: