The 2019 enterprise software un-predictions

Jon Reed & Brian Sommer Profile picture for user jonandbrian December 6, 2018
Had your fill of buzzword-saturated, self-congratulatory tech predictions from miscellaneous gurus, attention seekers and insiders? We’ve got your holiday tonic right here. Feast on our annual enterprise software un-predictions.

The sad reality beauty of the tech space is in its predictability: something Jon and Brian use to craft each year’s list of un-predictions.

We know that vendors will be insatiable, keynotes will get borked, and, marketers will create all new buzzwords and acronyms. All these things will make our kettles steam.

So, if you want to get ahead of this in 2019, read on brave souls, as Brian and Jon unveil hot new buzzwords, and reveal the many wonders in store for us in 2019.

The top 15 un-predictions for 2019

1. Vendors back away from the term “immersive experience” after rumors surface of users drowning in their own data lakes.

2. User conference attendees get grumpy when told their lunch will be served in small chunks, via an array of “microservices”.

3. The first major 5G demo fails, due to bandwidth limitations.

4. AI saves blockchain, data visualization will save analytics, and CX will come riding in to rescue ERP.

5. Serverless computing gets a big boost when it gets picked up by several large restaurant chains.

6. Autonomous technology extends beyond databases when vendors create the first autonomous pencil. This un-prediction writes itself.

7. We hear a self-driving programmer is already in beta testing, too.

8. A press release for the adult film industry gets accidentally merged with one touting virtual reality. We can’t for the press conference!

9. “Digital twins” give way to triplets due to a bizarre IVF mix-up.

10. In three consecutive conference keynotes, former athletes urge attendees to give their digital transformation projects "a full 110%". Not to be outdone, Ray Wang urges us to raise our game to “infinite %”.

11. To one-up SAP’s $8 billion acquisition of Qualtrics, and keep the heat on Amazon and Whole Foods, Oracle spends $100 billion to buy Fry’s Electronics.

12. The “War for Talent” is officially called off, as there wasn’t anyone available to work on it.

13. A rebuttal piece from Forbes on “Why the War for Talent Still Matters” is found to have been written by an AI program. In the reader comments section, a slew of chatbots disagree with the author’s premise.

14. Engagement shapes up to be the “feel good story of 2019” - until an IT manager has the nerve to ask what it is.

15. Elon Musk & Mark Zuckerberg mend their differences to create a new software application: a pro-active SEC management bot.

More 2019 un-predictions, delivered by drone to a keynote stage near you

  • Oracle’s Larry Ellison has an awkward moment when he receives an Amazon Prime Now package delivery during his OpenWorld keynote.
  • A Gartner analyst gets fired for placing Gartner on the hype cycle.
  • Wally from Dilbert gets stuck on his project, unable to make his keynote appearance at a leading user conference.
  • Vendor marketing teams are euphoric when they realize the problem of employee experience can be solved with circadian lighting. Let’s all shine a bright light on that idea.
  • A software CEO is badly injured on stage while extolling the benefits of “self-healing” technology.
  • Tinder sues SAP over the use of the term “Indirect Access,” a trademarked concept their members have been guilty of participating in for years.

In 2019, Brian will introduce the Luddite/Flat Earth Society awards for Outstanding Excellence in ERP Incrementalism. To even get a nomination for this prestigious award, a vendor must show:

  • Determined resistance against the cloud
  • A profound indifference to multi-tenancy
  • Reluctance to abandon their old licensing model
  • A baffling inability to release new vertical functionality
  • And, most importantly, a passion for on-premises user training, complete with a set of three-ring binders.

An analyst relations pro gets so torqued at the antics of industry analysts, she hosts the next analyst summit at a McDonald’s PlayPlace. Vinnie Mirchandani asks Ronald McDonald the first question.

Somewhere, somehow, someone will once again be thanked for their leadership. #TYFYL

The ultimate enterprise pickup line will change from “Can I tell you more about my micro-vertical?”  to “How would you like to try out my immersive experience?”

And: Brian still won’t get a Facebook account.

New tech words for 2019

  • Omni-crapper – when your customer experience breaks down as customers move from channel to channel. (“Yeah, returning that espresso machine was a real omni-crapper.”)
  • Blockchained – when customers or analysts are exposed to a series of next-gen marketing pitches and keynotes (“Jon, you ok? I heard you got blockchained yesterday.”)
  • Jump the Snark – when an industry analyst pushes a software executive a bit too far.
  • OverPaaS – what happens when tech analysts and customers can’t take any more briefings about platform as a service.
  • PaaSDue – What you call a company still using an antiquated on-premises ERP product
  • PaaSOver or PaaSOnIT – What happens when a prospect doesn’t choose your new cloud software solution.
  • Subversive Experience – When several of your best tech leaders all leave to join a competitor.
  • Cursive Experience – 1. a smartphone font that’s not in block print, or, 2. The expressive language some vendors use when an analyst worth their salt holds their feet to the fire.
  • Fiscal Experience – An enterprise software “experience” that will eventually show up on an invoice.
  • Quantum Consulting - the art of billing customers to assess their “readiness potential” for a quantum computing beta.
  • FaaD - Facebook as a Disservice

Finally, don’t forget to check out our 2018 un-predictions (and enterprise keynote survival guide) to see just how wrong prescient Jon and Brian can be!

And, of course, please add your un-predictions into the comments section below! Have a great holiday season, and we look forward to sharing the buzzwords journey with you in 2019!

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