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Get Your Geek On: 5 Office Tech Trends You Don't Know About

Technology allows small businesses to do a lot of things, from hosting worldwide conference calls to virtualizing offices. Check out five of the latest emerging small business technology trends that you might not even know about yet.

Trend 1: Even More Data

Many offices use and analyze data to determine the efficacy of potential marketing campaigns. But now the data can be your marketing campaign. Since people are always carrying personal GPS locators — smartphones to you and me — their movements can be tracked, which can result in targeted advertising that activates when they're within range of a certain place, opening up a new world of data mining. For example, a restaurant could offer a deal to anyone who's within a mile of its building.

Trend 2: 3D Printing

Perhaps one of the more hyped technologies that small businesses may see is 3D printing. With a 3D printer, you can print a number of items with actual working parts. In the future, office technology could be upgraded with this new technology. Imagine being able to print off a part for a broken photocopier or print concepts straight from your CAD drawings. For business, this could mean fewer issues with sourcing old parts.

Trend 3: Indestructible Screens

Have you worried about how easily your technology’s flat screens can shatter when dropped? Breakages may become old news with new lightweight plastic screens that can be rolled. These screens can be flexed and folded without damage. They'll also be lighter and may consume less power. This could revolutionize many aspects of how you work, including your presentations.

Trend 4: Secure Passwords

Passwords are often trivial and easy for hackers to guess. In fact there's even a list of common passwords out there that hackers use and then try until they get a response. To safeguard against this, Microsoft® has recently developed technology that prohibits more than a few users from using the same password. This means that no more than a few instances of the same password can exist, eliminating the common passwords vulnerability. For your company, this means a much safer network.

Trend 5: Voice-Activated Search on Steroids

While voice-activated search on smartphones has been a great selling point, it is limited. Newer variants aim to combine personal information from the user's phone with general information collated from other users and cloud software. The result will be a personal assistant that can help organize your life for you. While no one has been able to truly create an effective device that can manage your day-to-day life, there is a lot of research going on around it, making it seem inevitable that someone will eventually get it right.

Small business technology can expect to see some exciting changes in the near future. Whether you choose to invest in 3D printing, flexible screens or more secure passwords, you’ll be able to do more with your company when you embrace the newest technologies on the horizon.

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