As I wake up from my holiday hibernation I've been thinking about what the web 2.0 market is going to look like over the next year. So here are my predictions for 2008:
- Take it to Go. The iPhone was just the tip of the iceberg. Mobility is going to be increasingly popular and I think we'll see new and innovative ways to mobilize information.
- Consolidation - Mergers & Acquisitions. Already this year Plaxo put up their For Sale sign - I'll be particularly interested in how this one turns out since they are one of the few players with a business focus. However I think this is just one of many sales and/or merges we'll see in 2008 - along with a few IPOs.
- Social Networking Off to the Niches. MySpace and Facebook made their point with millions of users actively sharing, discussing and connecting with each other. With success comes followers - I think we're going to see a lot of 'social networks' popping up and that by the end of 2008 there will be a network for everyone (including everyone in business).
- Corporations Learn to Exhale - a Little. I still think we have a ways to go before most companies can be as open as Sun but this year we'll move from 'innovators' to 'early adopters' as F500 companies get closer to crossing the 'marketing 2.0' chasm.
- Widgets go Corporate. Widgets and web apps have entered the mainstream B2C market - what commercial company doesn't have one? In 2008 widgets will start to enter the corporate world - I think we'll see some business apps on Facebook too.
- Advertising Business Model Experimentation. Publishing companies are still trying to figure out how to best monetize the proliferation of user generated content. I think we'll see a few business models introduced and tested before we get it right. Which of course the market will change again.
- Second Life gets Competition. Despite the buzz and hype of Second Life I don't think they've moved fast enough to simplify the experience of virtual worlds for the masses leaving the door open for entry. I think we'll see a another major player in this space who will give Linden Labs a run for their money.