At Salsify, we're always looking into the future, trying to predict and anticipate what the next biggest consumer and technological trends will be. From our point of view, 2016 is going to be another great, innovative and interesting year for everyone in the commerce industry.
So, here are 7 predictions that we are absolutely certain will happen in the coming year.
1. Amazon and Walmart drones clash over Nevada.
Amazon and Walmart were both in the media in 2015 as they built up flying drone armies, allegedly to deliver things, though we all know it's simply an arms race.
In 2016, we predict the war between these two retail titans will go from cold to hot, with the major battle occurring over northern Nevada. Much of the area will be an unshoppable wasteland for millennia to come.
2. Best Buy experiences explosion in sales following the launch of a cyborg installation service.
Let's face it, your human arms suck. They're always getting tired, and if you sleep on them funny they go numb, and then you wake up and they hurt, and your spouse kicks you for yelping. Also: hangnails.
Best Buy will enable you to replace your crappy old arms with new, cyborg arms that have 10 times the strength and will be guaranteed to never fall asleep while you are. Also, they're totally sweet for typing.
"3D printed homes will be 100% LEED certified."
3. You will live in a 3D printed house.
3D printing is here to stay, and in 2016 not only will you be able to print your whole house, but you should plan on it.
3D printed houses are pixel-perfect, LEED Platinum certified, fireproof, insulated for all weather conditions and include super fast Bluetooth 15.0 synchronization with your iPhone. Production costs will be basically zero, so that the major cost in upgrading your existing house will be disposing of your existing, crappy house.
4. Apple Watch 2.0 replaces iPhone as the flagship Apple product, allowing consumers to embed smartwatches inside their wrists.
The Apple watch, launched in 2015, was a great engineering marvel, but it's only the beginning.
In 2016, look for a version of the watch that is a complete functional replacement for your phone, but that will also be embedded within your wrist so that you always have it with you. Related: Keep an eye out for the Apple Chair release that contains a built in charger that plugs right into you.
"Our vision for the watch is that it should not only be a part of how you run your life, it should be a part of you," Tim Cook will say when he announces the wrist-embedded device.
5. China swaps out entire manufacturing workforce with robots.
Foxconn's strategic initiative to replace a million Chinese jobs with Robots by 2018 will be accelerated, and the massive Chinese workforce will be completely replaced by robots, further driving down the cost of global production and fueling more Foreign Affairs articles on Whose Century Is This Anyway.
Related: Chinese demand for 3D-printed vacation homes out west will skyrocket. This is a good time to invest in western Chinese REITs.
6. Elon Musk announces that he will live on the moon.
Tired of the limitations of life on Earth, Elon Musk, founder of Paypal, Tesla, Solar City and SpaceX, will move his base of operations to the moon.
Per Musk's Twitter feed: "C u suckas in space!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" (I don't know about you, but I admire his usage of extra exclamation points within Twitter's restrictive 140 character limit.)
7. My mother will buy groceries on the Interwebs.
Well, probably not. Put this one in the "hopeful" category.
And that's all of the future that we can see for now (someone unplugged the crystal ball), but stay tuned to Salsify for more (super) serious predictions and actual insights into commerce through 2016!
Any additional predictions of your own? I am @gonzofy on the Twitter.