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The tech trends we can expect to see in 2017

2017 is almost here and naturally technology advances will be front and centre in the new year but what are the top technology trends that we will be seeing?

It will be a brave new world in 2017 where the actual technology won’t be the focus but the way we use it.

Improvements in the quality of our technology – picture quality, screen size, speed and processing power – will continue but the trends that will emerge will have more to do with how we put that tech to use.

The new trends, products and services will be showcased at next week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.

Here’s what we can expect to see in 2017.

SMART HOME / INTERNET OF THINGS

Our homes are getting smarter and more products being connected to each other will go hand in hand.

There have already been significant offerings in this space but a lack of compatibility between different competing devices has been the roadblock.

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In 2017, we will move even closer to a standard that all companies can use now that giants like Google, Apple and Amazon are getting involved.

Expect more devices to talk to each other and create a smarter solution even if they’re different brands.

VIRTUAL REALITY/AUGMENTED REALITY

It’s fair to say that 2016 was the year Virtual Reality went mainstream with VR headsets that work with our smartphones and the release of the PlayStation VR which had dedicated content to create a truly immersive experience.

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Augmented reality also had a shot in the arm this year thanks to popular apps like Pokemon Go which overlaid digital elements over reality.

We can expect to see even more in 2017 as content creators like gaming developers and Hollywood film studios embrace the technology to deliver exciting new experiences.

DRONES

We’ve already seen that drones are a lot more than just flying cameras.

In 2017 they will be used for a variety of other purposes like surveillance, mapping, farming, agriculture, emergency services and more.

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Drone deliveries have always looked good on paper and there will be more companies looking to offer this fast service.

And the more exploration in this area by these large and influential companies, the more the governing bodies will explore ways they can be implemented but still keeping safety as the highest priority.

SELF-DRIVING CARS

It’s a year later and a year closer to seeing more self-driving cars on the road.

And it’s not just the car companies that are involved.

Naturally Tesla, BMW, Mercedes Benz, Audi, VW and Volvo will advance autonomous driving this year but companies like Apple, LG and Google will also be weighing in with their technology.

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Expect to see even more partnerships between tech companies and car manufacturers announced in 2017 as they consolidate their self-driving options.

Hopefully the laws in some states and countries will also reflect the changes as well.

BLUETOOTH 5

The latest version of Bluetooth will have more range, more capacity and faster speeds.

This is ideal for wireless smart home automation products to can now have a solid connection from opposite ends of the house.

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Expect to see Bluetooth 5 on the new gadgets you purchase in 2017 – especially on the smartphone and other mobile devices that could follow Apple’s lead and ditch the headphone jack.

EVEN SMARTER TVS

The TV has evolved quite rapidly in the last few years and not just in the technology stakes with 4K Ultra HD, OLED and HDR (High Dynamic Range).

The next trick for TVs is for even easier and faster connectivity to access content at the blink of an eye and to also control the rest of your home.

Vera lets you pin your favourite sources and features on the home screen

The Smart TV will also be the control panel that will control all of the home automation devices in your home.

Tech Guide will be in Las Vegas for the Consumer Electronics Show so be sure to come to the site every day to read about all the latest product news and announcements.

About Stephen Fenech

Stephen is the Tech Guide editor and one of Australia's most respected tech journalists. He is a regular on radio and TV talking about the latest tech news, products and trends.

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