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Top 7 tech trends in 2021

19/02/21 8 min. read

As we did last year, this 2021 that’s just started, from Santander Global Tech we want to analyze which technological trends will hear more about and will mark the year.

New approaches emerge into the trends that are there every year because are part of the technological strategy for the big companies.

As in the case of AI with the MLOps profile, or that one of the migration to Cloud platforms of the core business companies.

“We can’t put aside the change in the ways of working that have brought a boom in online remote work tools and the development and growth of virtual reality”

Also this year we hope that services associated with the already consolidated technological infrastructure of 5G and or with the already mature blockchain technology grow.

Have you read an easy explanation of what Blockchain is? Read this here.

7. Technology for remote work and new office spaces

Like last year and for a few months ahead, the pandemic has marked new ways of working where lots of companies added or expanded the work from home to its Human Resources policy.

Remote work Tools

The principal tools of videoconference like Zoom, Webex, Microsoft Teams, Google Hangouts, GoToMeeting and Virizon BlueJeans.

remote work tools and new office spaces

It has grown up offering next-gen services that make working from home easier in every sector: business, educational, medical and even leisure.

As Twitch platform for broadcasting video games sets a good example.

Also, there are emerging new businesses in the telecommuting sector as Bluescape, Figma, Slab y Tandem with visual collaboration services for work teams.

Other services like Miro o Mural continues supporting sharing digital murals to kanban or to perform team dynamics.

There are already many scrum teams that make permanent connections during the day in a videoconference, simulating the collaboration that may exist in a physical office.

Office Spaces

But in the remote day to day is not everything collaboration, and the work environment may not help concentration or suffer more distractions than they should.

In order to solve it, you can check this productivity, improvement technique, the pomodoro technique here.

Also, if you want to know more about agility in business in this uncertain moment, we have an article dedicated to that.

Lastly, and hoping this year, we can think about the progressive return to the physical office, where the trends that are expected are oriented to create open spaces, with no rigid structures, and with hubs to collaborate, innovate and meet.

This, united with the digital technologies mentioned, will increase the value of the work experience beyond having a physical position located in an office.

6. AI transparent, ethical, and upward profile: the MLOps

Because of the adoption of AI and its increasingly extensive use, two trends emerge to evolve:

  • Ethics in AI
  • and new profiles for its development

According to the consultants Gartner and Deloitte, AI begins an industrialization phase, so it has to take care of the construction, maintenance, governance and scalability.


MLOps profile

Where current software developments already have the profile of DevOps as an integrator and management of the resources associated with the software life cycle, the MLOps profile arises in AI.

According to IDC, 28% of AI or machine learning projects are unsuccessful due to a lack of expertise, or problems in production data and integrated development environments.

47% of the projects fail in the experimental phase prior to production.

To solve these problems, the profile of MLOps arises, whose responsibility will be to model development and delivery to industrialize and scale machine learning, accelerate the life cycle of AI software, developing pipelines that expedite its deployment and monitoring.

In short, improve the production of AI models.


Introducing MLOps
Fuente, Ed. O’Really “Introducing MLOps”

Ethics in AI

Regarding the search for ethical and transparent AI, more and more companies are emerging dedicated to the governance of AI engineering and its responsible, reliable and transparent use.

For example, Parity is dedicated to risk management and offers help for model audits, and another star-up, Fiddler, focuses on the expandability of these models.

Cloudera company point put “Today, conversations revolve around data anonymity, but the discourse will become deeper. By 2021, ethical AI and data governance will be applied to different areas”, referring to issues of bias, privacy and transparency.

6 principles to design an ethical AI

5. 5G Network

The 5G network came last year but there’s a relevant landmark in this Q1 of 2021, the auction of 700Mhz frequencies. The band that will allow taking advantage of the ultrafast connections.

This event, and also the cheapening of the technology for the consumers thanks to the availability to afford mobile phones with this technology, will make that the 5G network spread and consolidate as the main connectivity wireless model, and not just for mobile phones.

Some of the uses are yet to come, as could be support for vehicles and independent drones, boosting IoT and Smart Cities; improvement of the videoconferences quality, e-health apps, augmented reality and numerous applications in the online gaming industry.

4. Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity is a clear and mandatory component of any technological development nowadays, but, hold a minute! We have an article from our colleague, Vicente Motos, about the 5 cyber-threat trends in 2021,  take a look here!

3. Blockchain, self-managed digital identity

The search for a secure digital and self-managed identity is still a guideline nowadays. Last year, we did advance how an agreement had been reached between some large Spanish companies, as Banco Santander, to develop digital identity through blockchain technology.

We hope that this initiative would allow the users to manage in a secure and reliable way their own digital identity.

Blockchain, identidad digital autogestionada

The main benefit of this system would be to facilitate the hiring of services without the need of filling forms repeatedly, whether to rent a car, insurance, a loan, etc., with the guarantee that the information provided is reliable and hasn’t been altered.

Do you want to know the 6 most common errors in blockchain projects?

2. Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality

We did not care about the main technologies of last year, but we have to mention them because of some reasons. Last year they announced new devices or evolved versions of virtual reality, like the Facebook glasses, Oculus Quest 2, which has been well received in sales.

It is true that the applications of this technologies are limited to the entertainment industry in general. But in light of the rumor that Apple is working on augmented reality and virtual reality headset, suggest that future applications developments will be welcomed under this technology soon.

Apple´s plan is to compete with Oculus, Playstation VR and HTC, using there owns App Store. It is true that the Google glasses did not succeed, but maybe it was not the time or they did not have the appropriate technology at that time.

Virtual Reality VS. Augmented Reality, Best Products on the Market of the last 10 years

1. Business core modernization

Since today, modernizing ongoing or inherited business systems and migrating them to the cloud exhaust an organization´s digital transformation budget, but there was the dilemma that not doing so would not help unleash an organization’s digital potential.

According to Deloitte consultant, this is about to change. In what they recognize as a growing trend, some companies are beginning to redesign traditional business cases for the modernization of their business core.

One of the ways to carry it out in a way that coexist legacy and evolved systems would be to take advantage of low-code platforms and tools that are currently highly scalable and offer resources such as Machine Learning and AI.

These platforms, together with the adoption of the agile framework, standardize how to create innovative products and services the consultant points out.

Finally, migration to the cloud in PaaS mode allows new products to be developed with current needs, without stopping the ongoing business in traditional systems.


Jesus Lopez

Jesús López

Santander Global Tech

Inquisitive, restless and interested in indisputable things.


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