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Predictive tech is growing but it comes with risks

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March 15
8:20 PM 2014

Predictive technology has grown tremendously but it has also become more controversial, VentureBeat reported.

Predictive technology refers to applications and services that have the capacity to gather data by itself before the user even knows that such information is needed. Google Now, Tempo AI and other similar applications represent the early wave of this segment which is driven by cloud computing infrastructure, the widespread use of smartphones and the growing adoption of mobile broadband, the report said.

The predictive tech segment is expected to rise in the coming years. Expect Labs Founder and Chief Executive Officer Tim Tuttle told VentureBeat through email, "Over the next few years you are going to see predictive tech and intelligent assistants begin to appear everywhere. Not only will they be in most apps you use - they will also be in your car, in your living room, and in your office. They will also be inside the enterprise - helping doctors better treat patients, helping customer support reps more quickly assist their customers, helping a mobile workforce coordinate in the field, etc."

The forecast also coincides with the increasing adoption of wearable technology. Since predictive technology relies on data, these wearables or devices that are physically attached to an individual have sensors that can get these data which makes them very rich sources of vital information, the report said.

However, the rise of predictive apps also brings its own set of concerns. For example, Google and Facebook are getting more sophisticated in showing users the things they believe they like but as Eli Pariser, the Founder of MoveOn.org, wrote in his book "The Filter Bubble," "It's also a real problem: The set of things we're likely to click on (sex, gossip, things that are highly personally relevant) isn't the same as the set of things we need to know."

There are also issues about privacy and the amount of data users are willing to give to companies providing predictive tech services, the report said.

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