Published on April 7th, 2020 | by Sunit Nandi0
The History of Technology’s Influence on Business
Technology influences everything, and it is a vital part of our everyday lives. When you think about today’s tech, you think about computers, software, and gadgets. In the last 30 years alone, technology’s growth has been truly amazing.
For businesses across all industries, these tech advancements have greatly improved business models, efficiency in the workplace, and the quality of production and services. Now businesses can rely on automating processes and technology designed to boost sales. And we’ll continue to see technology’s effects on businesses as we move forward.
For now, let’s look back at the last three decades and appreciate how technology has influenced the way businesses operate today.
Business Tech in the 1990s
One of the biggest and most important innovations of all time emerged in the 1990’s – the World Wide Web. In particular, browsers are an integral part of our current systems. Without this creation, websites would not be accessible, and we would have significantly less access to the knowledge we have today.
Another important tool that came about in the 1990s was the predecessor to the modern smartphone, Palm Pilot. Unveiled in 1996, this handheld device replaced the old personal organizers and held more information and capabilities. These would eventually lead to the modern-day smartphone, which helps all business owners communicate quickly and arrange operations on the go.
Apple had an impact on businesses in the late ’90s, with the invention of the AirPort, a Wi-Fi access point that introduced the concept of wireless internet. Before, computers were always directly connected, but Apple showed the world that you could use your computer anywhere. Now, every business has at least a laptop in the office.
Joakim Jardenberg from Helsingborg/Ramlösa, Sweden / CC BY (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)
…in the 2000s
The 2000s saw the rise of social media with MySpace in 2003 and Facebook in 2004. Though it would be a while before businesses capitalized on the reach of social media, its invention was significant. It connected people around the country and, eventually, the world.
When businesses did finally understand the impact that using Facebook and Twitter could have on profits, it would change how companies advertised forever.
On the subject of advertising, Google AdWords came onto the scene in 2000. It made marketing easier and safer for companies to advertise to a larger audience. Companies had to create their ads, but using Google’s evolving techniques, they could buy ads based on performance rather than amounts of time. They were often cheaper than print ads, too.
…in the 2010s
Innovation in the last decade has been incredible. It’s impossible to list everything that has had a significant impact on business owners. Everything from organizational and messaging platforms, such as Slack, to improvements with assigning IP addresses (IPv6) have changed how people navigate the web and sales as a whole.
Smart assistants began appearing in this decade, like Google Home and Amazon’s Alexa. With these assistants also came different “smart” products, like responsive lighting and energy-saving initiatives. Many business owners use these tools to create sustainability and comfortable office spaces. Some companies that are involved in technology themselves create AI-compatible items.
Businesses need technology, and the reverse is true as well. Innovation leads to profits, and profits support innovation. It is all connected, and it’s a big part of our lives.
Whether you are a company founder or a casual consumer, most of the conveniences you love would not be here if it were not for the many amazing tech inventions of the last 30 years. And the timeline here is not the only history that will shape business as we know it – this is only the beginning.