The New Year is in full swing in the tech industry with exciting events like Consumer Electronics Show (CES) already done and dusted, Box’s IPO hitting the headlines, Facebook at Work launching and more.

CES in Las Vegas has gone through a huge transformation since its launch more than four decades ago, but the abundance of ideas and entrepreneurial spirit still stands. This year, smart wearables, robots, drones and 4K TVs – among other gadgets – stole the spotlight. With innovation, however, comes unknown waters. When it comes to discussions around adopting any new technology in the workplace it’s not long before the inevitable question of security rears its head and this is now the case with wearables. Such was the case years ago when smartphones and tablets began to infiltrate organizations and catapulted the concept of “bring your own device” into everyone’s lives. Security was the big headache and wearables will be yet another device CIOs and IT departments will have to consider how to manage. When it comes to wearables in the workplace, IT staff will need to integrate the technology into the business. Enterprise connectivity benefits are only achieved when end-to-end solutions—including security and management services—support the devices and connections.

In 2014, a number of high profile data breaches made it onto the front pages, highlighting the importance of cybersecurity with both enterprises and consumers. Companies such as Target, Neiman Marcus, Home Depot, Chase, Sony and J.P. Morgan were all thrown into the limelight as a result of large scale hacks and the lesson for 2015 is that enterprises and end users must be more vigilant. Of course, companies need to ensure that they’re using systems with the security measures and accreditations required, but the data security ecosystem stretches far and wide and employees, partners and contractors all need to play their part too when it comes to protecting information.

As the industry awaits the first tech IPO’s of 2015, all eyes will be on how the long-awaited Box IPO performs. The value delivered by cloud storage offerings, particularly to businesses, has dropped significantly as people have realized that replacing your C: drive in the cloud might make access from multiple devices easier, but it doesn’t actually help people to work together more successfully. This is the real problem that organizations are trying to solve in today’s digital economy and there’s now an increasing stampede away from providing simple cloud storage. As Box is moving increasingly towards the collaboration space and away from file sync, share and storage, I think the IPO will prove successful. The company has added more collaboration features to its offering and collaboration is now where the real value lies, driving greater productivity, helping decision-making, and supporting in business growth.  Although it burned bright for a short time, cloud storage, sync and share has now gone the way of standalone social tools and become a check-list feature, rather than a useful, valuable category in its own right.


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