Pundit Gene Munster gives his ‘State of the Apple and Beyond’ keynote

Loup Ventures founder and managing partner Gene Munster

Loup Ventures founder and managing partner Gene Munster

At today’s Addigy 2019 Addigy Partner Summit, Gene Munster, long time Apple analyst and managing partner at Loup Ventures, give the “State of Apple and Beyond” keynote. He’s very bullish on the tech giant and tech in general and gave his thoughts on where things are heading over the next 10 years. 

Munster’s talk focused on the next big curves in technology and how Apple fit not the picture. He stressed that the pace of innovation is continually accelerating. For example, the telephone took 35 years to reach 25% adoption in the U.S., the radio took 31 years to achieve this, the personal computer took 16 years, but the iPad only three years.

“Our lives will change even more drastically in 15 years than we can imagine,” he says.

Within the next years, the analyst thinks three topics will be important in the tech world. One of them is regulation due to all the concern over privacy and data breaches.

“Apple has stayed out of the fray for most part due to their concern for privacy,” Munster says. “Still, the company will probably have some collateral risk here due to more regulation.”

A second topic of concern will be tech addiction, as some platforms have created a “mindless” experience. 

“I see people changing their habits, regarding social media,” Munster says. “I think there will be somewhat of a revolt, at least in regards to how, and how much, social media is used now. For instance, I don’t think Facebook is good for this world.”

Finally, he says 5G is going to be very, very big.

“It will have a subtle start and really pick up steam next year and and in 2021,” Munster says. “It’s hard to understate the significance of 5G.”

The analyst also sees three important things happening in the tech world over the next two years. The first is the “electrication” of automobiles.

“Two percent of cars sold last year were electric, most of them made by Tesla,” Munster says, “However, this is going to change. The concept of an internal combustion engine doesn’t make sense … it’s inefficient and has too many parts that break. But there are only 16 moving parts in a Tesla motor.”

Hearables will also gain even more momentum over the next two years. Munster says the biometrics and biomarkers in them will increase. A third area of growth will be smart speakers.

Currently, users of smart speakers use them for playing music, setting timers, and checking the weather. Munster forecasts that use cases will expand over the next two years with increased scheduling features, such as telling your speaker to “set up an appointment with my dentist.”

Interestingly, in its comprehensive tests, Loup Ventures has found that Google has the “smartest” smart speaker, but it’s the HomePod, not Alexa, that’s the second smartest.

Over the next five years, Munster says we’ll see more advanced “autopilot” features in automobiles. Autonomous cars are already here, but they’ll be more common — and make trips safer — as the technology improves.

Augmented reality will also thrive over the next five years, being used to do more things around the house. It could be used to help repair home products, eliminating the need to call a repair man. And it could be used for more fun activities, such as animating video calls based on the topic of the conversations. Such tasks will lead to the increasing popularity of head-mounted displays.

“I predicted Apple would release a TV for years; I was wrong,” Munster says, “I learned that sometimes companies work on products that are never released. That said, I do think Apple will release its own smart glasses in the next few years.”

Robotics will also play an increasingly important role in our lives, he predicts. Especially, “cobots” that work more closely, and safely, with humans.

Gaming will also be increasingly popular, including “eSports” and watching people play games online with the ability to make comments. One such platform is Twitch, which currently has 1.2 million viewers at any given time. 

Over the next 10 years, Munster foresees a massive change in the world of transportation. Instead of buying one big vehicle to serve a variety of needs, we’ll have a variety of smaller vehicles such as scooters, bikes, and mini-cars. And at some point we’ll reach the point where many people won’t “drive” cars at all, but use autonomous vehicles,

The next decade will also see the rise of nanotech with devices that can pick up your thoughts, says Munster, That sounds scary, but it will be a boon to many people, he adds, For example, imagine a wheelchair that could be controlled by brain impulses. 

As far as Apple and the future, the tech giant is positioning itself to face all these challenges, Munster says. His evidence: the tech giant has made eight big changes in leadership over the past year compared to only four changes in the previous seven years combined

Munster said 5G will offer big opportunities for Apple in the areas of augmented reality, autonomous cars, and, of course, smarter iPhones.

He also predicts that will expand its upgrade program for buying hardware. He expects that we’ll be able to buy Macs, iPads, and Apple Watches like we can do with iPhones via the iPhone Upgrade Program.

Health care will also be a major area of focus for Apple,

“Tim Cook has said that Apple’s greatest contribution to mankind will be health care,” Munster says, “That doesn’t mean it will be the greatest revenue generator for the company. However, Apple’s health care business will allow them to do things like capture data from your Apple Watch and send that data to your doctor.”

With all the things the company has in the works, the analyst thinks Apple’s stock can double over the next three years, He’s also bullish about the Mac as an increasingly important business platform.

Munster concluded his keynote by pointing out that, while tech can improve our lives, we should keep in mind three things: creativity, community, and empathy.”

“These are three things that humans can do that machines can’t,” he says.