According to Nielsen, the spread and influence of technology will be a key driver of change across the globe over the next five years. And the same would also expected to influence the Middle East & Africa market.
Nelson predicts 14 technology shifts that will be in play over the next five years including the spread of existing technology and infrastructure, machine learning and decision making, big data and artificial intelligence and cashless payment technology.
Detailing how the convergence of technology will bring about future scenarios, the report ranked outcomes globally for consumers, retailers and suppliers.
Consumers: technology for convenience; and consumers willing to accept suggestions from devices will likely see a rise in programmatic consumption – tied in first place in the consumer field.
Retailers: Instant payment – as baskets are captured and paid for as consumers walk out of the store.
Consumer-facing brands: Using technology for brand building and public relations purposes.
Tech Innovation Game Change In Middle East
In the Middle East region, consumers are fastidiously adopting to a modern and convenient lifestyle with technology at the forefront. The region is already seeing huge investment in technology innovation and focussing more on global leadership rather than just regional consumers.
“The technology solutions that enable brands and retailers to meet both shopper needs as well as deliver operational benefits will be the game changers,” noted Sue Temple, Head of Shopper Practice, Nielsen Growth and Emerging Markets.
“Technology will play a big role in traditionally conservative countries like Saudi Arabia and will open whole new channels and brand experiences for females via e-commerce and virtual reality. Government agendas will also influence technology development such as in the UAE, where their 2030 vision is to have 25% of all transportation in Dubai to be smart and driverless,” said Danny Mendonca, Innovation Lead, Nielsen Emerging Markets, MEA.
“Virtual Reality will enable the customer to experience brands across a range of industries like never before from supermarkets, fashion, electronics, cars and homes,” added Ms Temple.
Africa Predicted To Accelerate Growth
The Sub Saharan region is one region which is said to boom once there is an improvement in the existing technologies. The region has one of the lowest rates of Internet penetration in the world (22 percent) and technology advancement is expected to have a fundamental impact for this region, the report states.
Africa is traditionally seen as region which has a low base of infrastructure, technology and consumer spending, but its expected to showcase significant acceleration and offer enormous opportunities for organisations across all consumer industries in the future. “In the consumer packaged goods sector, suppliers will be the first adopters of game-changing tech, followed by retailers, followed by consumers,” said Ailsa Wingfield, Thought Leadership, Nielsen Emerging Markets.
The report further states that Africans are keen for cashless payment technology to alleviate traditional challenges with currency fluctuation, fraud, and limits to business and personal needs. However, the extent of mainstream adoption will be limited until infrastructure and consumer spending power improves.