MSP predictions from the 2014 Consumer Electronics Show

Dave Sobel

The Consumer Electronics Show this year gives us an interesting view into the future of technology, and allows us to make some important predictions about what is to come.

Most notable about the show was what was most absent – desktops. With the exception of gaming focused applications, the desktop was notable for the fact it wasn’t present at the show. Innovation is not focused on the desktop. Intel, for example, had all kinds of tablets and laptops to show, but desktop computing was not on display. The death of the PC is here for consumers.

MSP-PredictionsIn displays, the buzz is in curved chassis and in 4K displays. Curved displays are a fad, much in the same way 3D TV was. 4K displays, however, have real application in computing. While another fad for consumers, these displays in computing will be notable as the pixel difference is significant.

Wearable technology dominated the show. Glasses, wristbands, clips on the hip, and accessories are new ways to interact with information. Devices that communicate with each other to track and display information are a growing trend. It’s interesting to see how healthcare is driving a good portion of that technology. A huge area of growth for consumer technologies will be in healthcare, with personal information tracked and managed.

What does all this mean for MSPs?

For MSPs, this trend can be seen in the move towards managing the user experience. Rather than focusing on devices, MSPs that are focusing on the user experience are in line with the trend in consumer consumption of technology. Our end users are becoming more and more connected with their devices, moving from a single device – the desktop – to a mesh of devices, all connected by the network.

MSPs have the unique position to take advantage of this by offering personalized support, even with a remote focus. Help Desk services are the wrapper which brings customer service to end customers. Delivered with a software solution like GFI MAX, an MSP can use built in video conferencing to keep a close, personal relationship with their customers yet still manage their help desk as efficiently as possible. Focusing on the end user delivers a high value service, and allows an MSP to differentiate from any public cloud service. Combined with monitoring and management, MSPs can have insight into all the devices the end user has, and ensure access to end user data from any of those devices.

Devices are clearly the trend. With the desktop receding into the background for consumers, we should expect similar movement in the business world over time, as information consumption moves to multiple form factors. Content creation continues to diversify, generated from handhelds to tablets to traditional desktops, and this complexity of devices is the opportunity for MSPs to thrive and succeed.

Were you at CES this year? Share your thoughts with a comment below!