Digital Technology Trends to Watch in 2024 - Insights from the SFI ADAPT Centre

08 January 2024

As we step into 2024, the SFI ADAPT Centre, Ireland’s leading research centre for AI-driven digital content technology, offers insights into the emerging digital technology trends poised to redefine industries, societies, and everyday lives. These trends highlight the accelerated pace of digital transformation and the increasing importance of innovative technologies in addressing global challenges.

Generative Artificial Intelligence (GenAI): GenAI continues to be at the forefront of digital advancement. In 2024, we expect to see these technologies becoming more integrated into various sectors, from healthcare diagnostics and personalised education to advanced manufacturing processes. AI-driven predictive analytics will play a crucial role in decision-making processes across industries.

Human-AI collaboration: We expect to see a surge of applications and interactions specifically focused to harness the strengths of GenAI to directly support the work that people do, using these AI tools as smart co-workers and collaborators to help us get things done. We’ll see this happening more in a whole host of sectors, with GenAI becoming tailored to companies and application areas, making truly collaborative AI experiences. 

Extended Reality (XR) in Everyday Use: The blurring lines between physical and digital worlds will become more prominent as Extended Reality (XR)—encompassing virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), and mixed reality (MR)—becomes more accessible. Applications in creative and cultural sectors, health, education, retail, and remote work are expected to become more mainstream.

Sustainable Tech for a Greener Future: As climate change remains a pressing concern, 2024 will see a surge in sustainable technologies. Innovations in energy-efficient computing, environmentally-friendly data centers, and green software engineering practices will gain traction.

The Rise of Digital Health Solutions: Telehealth, wearable health tech, and AI in medical diagnostics will continue to grow. Personalised medicine, powered by data analytics and machine learning, will enable more precise treatments and proactive health management.

Data Governance and the Impact of the EU AI Act: With the EU AI Act looming, 2024 is poised to be a landmark year for data governance and AI regulation. The Act aims to establish a legal framework for AI, focusing on transparency, accountability, and ethical use of AI. This regulation will have profound implications on how AI is developed and deployed, ensuring that AI systems are safe, respect EU rights, and follow strict data governance protocols. In line with these new standards, there will be an increased importance on research that explores these implications, guides policy and ethical technology development.

Disinformation and its Societal Impact: One of the most pressing challenges in the digital age is the spread of disinformation. In 2024, technologies aimed at identifying and mitigating the effects of false information will become increasingly important. ADAPT researchers are innovating methods to detect and counter disinformation, understanding its potential to disrupt societies, influence public opinion, and undermine trust in digital platforms. Developing robust, AI-driven tools to combat disinformation is crucial for maintaining the integrity of digital communications and preserving societal trust.

Smart Cities: Smart city initiatives are leading to more efficient urban management and improved quality of life. 2024 will be about smarter, more connected communities with a focus on sustainability, accessibility and wellbeing.  The Smart D8 testbed is acting as a centre of excellence internationally for what can be achieved through the smart use of digital technologies.

The ADAPT Centre continues to play a pivotal role in researching and developing these technologies, contributing to Ireland’s reputation as a leader in digital innovation. As we navigate through 2024, the centre remains committed to advancing the frontiers of digital technology, ensuring a positive impact on society and the economy.

For more insights into digital technology trends and the ADAPT Centre’s pioneering work, visit our website.