All of us have witnessed technologies go into oblivion. Every five-ten years, a technological device becomes obsolete and vanishes, substituted by a more advanced and efficient analogue. CD players are an example of this process: in the beginning of the 2000s, every teenager owned one; nowadays, it is difficult to find at least one person who would prefer a CD player over an iPod. CDs, floppy disks, push-button cell phones, pagers, paper organizers—hardly anyone uses them anymore. These technologies have become vintage items that only collectors are interested in. Logically, even though we may consider certain technology to be top-notch and hi-tech, within the next five years, it might disappear in the same way the aforementioned cassette players did.
One of such devices is ATMs, as well as credit cards and check books. Unexpected? Not really. According to a report from First Data, about 94% of consumers under 35 years prefer using online banking systems; one fifth of this number of people have never signed a paper check for payment. Just in the United States, the frequency of using paychecks has dropped by 57% percent in the years between 2000 and 2012; as for European countries, paychecks are not used there. With mobile payments having become extremely easy to make and with financial operations gradually migrating online, within the following five years, checks could become obsolete. Perhaps the only sphere where paychecks are still being used is with real estate and property renting, although property companies incline towards using electronic payments as well. Considering how popular electronic finance is becoming, it is logical to expect cash operations to become obsolete—and when it happens, ATMs, credit cards, and other similar technologies will become useless (TechCrunch).
Passwords and the principle of building electronic security around them is expected to disappear as well. It may be difficult to believe that within five years there will be no need to memorize dozens of complicated passwords for work and personal accounts, Facebook, banking systems, smartphones, laptops, and other technologies—the access to which we nowadays protect with security codes. However, it is enough to simply take a look at what security measures Apple, Meizu, and other vendors offer in order to understand what kind of future awaits security systems. Biometric data—this is what is going to protect our work and personal information soon enough. Today, almost any high-quality smartphone has a fingerprint scanner (so do laptops, even older models): you only have to press a button, and the system will recognize you as the legitimate owner of the device you are using. Moreover, every laptop or computer has a camera, so it can be expected that there will be software allowing our devices to read our retina, facial features, and other biometric information confirming identity. Even vehicles and banking systems might use this technology within the next five years, so the times when the password was the most dependable protection are probably ending (TopYaps).
Digital cameras—those handy devices everyone used to take with them when going camping or when people went on a family trip—are already becoming obsolete, even though manufacturers still try to impress customers with novelties, such as even more image resolution, or the possibility to change a focus point on an image after taking a photo. However, since Apple released iPhone 4 in 2010, it has become clear that digital cameras are going to gradually lose popularity. Indeed, with such cameras as those installed on the recent iPhone models, or even with those used in flagman Android devices, who would want to pay extra money for a stand-alone digital camera (Time)? However, this does not relate to DSLR-cameras (digital single-lens reflex cameras) produced by such giants as Nikon, Canon, Leica, and so on. DSLR-cameras are highly advanced tools used for professional photoshooting; with their help, a huge number of creative challenges can be accomplished, and no phone camera provides the same flexibility, versatility, quality, and reliability as even the cheapest cropped DSLR camera.
The USB flashdrive is yet another piece of technology that we will probably see vanish in the closest future. Although they are extremely handy (especially when we need to transfer vast amounts of data), research conducted by Ericsson Mobile shows that their popularity will go down; by 2020, more than 70% of Earth’s population is expected to be using smartphones—and there are no USB ports in them. Instead, companies such as Apple, Microsoft, and Google actively develop cloud information databases, allowing billions of users to store data on remote servers instead of having to keep them on devices. Possessing an account on one of such cloud databases lets a user access his or her information anywhere, anytime, and from any device. A user must pay the rental price for using cloud storages, but the costs are affordable. Therefore, USB flash-drives will become unneeded rather soon (Tech Crunch).
Throughout the recent decade, many technologies have emerged and disappeared almost without a trace. CDs, tape recorders, pagers, and other gadgets that seemed to be indispensable have been forgotten. But how about the technologies we rely on today? According to research, it can be expected that devices we got used to—USB flashdrives, digital cameras, security passwords, and even ATMs and credit cards—will be gone within the next five years. There is no need to worry though: with the current pace of technological development, there will be better, more efficient analogues for these technologies.
Works Citedtechnology essay
Gonser, Tom. “5 Things That Will Disappear in 5 Years.” TechCrunch. TechCrunch, 03 January 2016. Web. 14 July 2017.
Ansari, Anum. “5 Things That Will Disappear in the Next 5 Years.” TopYaps. N.p., 21 January 2016. Web. 14 July 2017.
“5 Tech Products That Will Be Dead in 5 Years.” Time. Time, n.d. Web. 14 July 2017.
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