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The Top 5 Worst Technology Predictions of All Time

Bill Gates? Steve Jobs? They're names you'd normally associate with cutting edge technological 'nouse' – but even the masters of the tech space can get it hopelessly wrong...

The Top 5 Worst Technology Predictions of All Time

Victim of Gross Underestimation

The Culprit: Thomas J Watson
Job Title: IBM's Chairman (1914-1956)
The Prediction: "I think there is a world market for maybe five computers.”
Made In: 1943

Strong words indeed for the man who propelled IBM to greatness during his time running the iconic company – but luckily for the IT support industry, his prediction was obviously wrong. Just for the record, there are now over two billion computers connected to the Internet while 352 million PCs were shipped in 2012...

[SOURCES:]

 http://allthingsd.com/20120915/its-official-the-era-of-the-personal-computer-is-over , http://uk.ask.com/question/how-many-computers-are-there-in-the-world , http://www.slashgear.com/pc-sales-to-decline-in-2012-for-the-first-time-in-11-years-10251339 , http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/news/9796963/PC-sales-down-as-Windows-8-fails-to-excite.html

 

Victim of Gross Overestimation

The Culprit: Bill Gates
Job Title: Co-founder of Microsoft
The Prediction: “Within five years, I predict [the tablet] will be the most popular form of PC sold in America.”
Made In: 2002 when launching the Windows Tablet PC

Well, Gates was kind of right; he just got the timing and more significantly the platform wrong. Fast forward to 2013 and the iPad is the de facto choice for many tablet owners with Apple boasting about 40% of the market share – while Microsoft struggles to make a dent with only 1.8% of the market. Ouch.

[SOURCE: http://www.forbes.com/sites/larrymagid/2013/05/01/apples-tablet-market-share-slips-and-samsung-grows/]

Victim of Getting Ahead of Himself

The Culprit: Ken Olsen
Job Title: Founder of Digital Equipment
The Prediction: "There is no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home."
Made In: 1977

On the face of it, Olsen was obviously way off the mark with the home computer scene subsequently booming in the 80s, 90s and onwards. But could his prediction come true one day? With the explosion in sales of tablets and smartphones, there is a very real risk that the traditional home computer could one day become a thing of the past – PC sales in 2012 declined by 3.2% compared to 2011, the first annual decline since 2001, while tablet shipments surged by 142.4% year on year in the first quarter of 2013. Time will tell...

[SOURCES:]

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/news/9796963/PC-sales-down-as-Windows-8-fails-to-excite.html , http://www.idc.com/getdoc.jsp?containerId=prUS24093213

Victim of Underselling, Erm, Himself

The Culprit: Steve Jobs
Job Title: The late CEO of Apple
The Prediction: “The subscription model of buying music is bankrupt. I think you could make available the Second Coming in a subscription model, and it might not be successful.”
Made In: 2003

Yes, even he could get it wrong. It’s especially ironic considering it was his own iTunes service (launched in 2007) that unequivocally showed that the music subscription market works really rather well. To date, iTunes music sales have generated $8 billion for Apple with its service accounting for 29% of all music sales...

[SOURCE: http://www.computerworld.com/s/article/9232610/Tech_predictions_gone_wrong]

Victim of Repeating Past Mistakes...

The Culprit: Bill Gates
Job Title: Co-founder of Microsoft
The Prediction: “Two years from now, spam will be solved."
Made In: 2004

Step forward and take another bow, Mr Gates. This time the tech whizz was ruminating about the imminent death of spam, those wretched missives that plague your inbox and frustrate your IT support team. Alas, the problem of spam isn't anywhere near being solved; research shows that 14.5 billion spam messages are sent out each day globally and that it accounts for 45% of all e-mails – with the cost in wasted time and resources to business set to increase to $198 billion annually...

[SOURCE:] 

http://www.securelist.com/en/analysis/204792293/Spam_in_April_2013#6 , http://www.spamlaws.com/spam-stats.html , http://blog.imninc.com/email-marketing/email-marketing-all-that-sizzles-not-spam-infographic-friday/

 

Tags: SMEs

Dr James Huntington Managing Director

James is the Founder and Managing Director at IT Farm. His background in Computer Science help lay the foundation for IT Farm to become one of the UK's first Cloud Computing Companies.

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