This year, the technologies that we will most likely hear the most about won't be fancy devices like smartphones or big-screen television sets. It will be the stuff we don't usually see: workhorse software and Internet products that are finding their moment now.
Before the coronavirus transformed our lives, the lists of tech to watch each year were often dominated by whiz-bang gizmos like smart speakers and curved televisions. But the pandemic has pushed us to embrace useful technology that was often overlooked. Once lame or gimmicky apps on our devices suddenly became central tools.
Take mobile wallet apps like Apple Pay and Square. While these have been around for years, some people stuck with credit cards and cash. But new germaphobia finally pushed more of us to try the contact-free phone payments as opposed to a card swipe.
Then there's augmented reality. The technology, which lets us interact with digital objects superimposed on our physical world, has been more than a decade in the making. For years, it seemed more futuristic than useful. But now that we can't easily go to a physical store to try things on, snapping a selfie to see a digital rendering of makeup on your face sure seems like a better idea.
From The New York Times
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