Snapchat’s move into money sharing ‘highly underestimated’ and Google Glass unlikely to take off with consumers, predicts futurist Rudy de Waele

Snapchat’s move into money-sharing with the release of its Snapcash service is indicative of how messaging apps will evolve, according to Shift 2020 technology innovation strategist Rudy de Waele, who also believes Google Glass is unlikely to take off with consumers.

Speaking at The Drum’s Disruption Day in London today, de Waele reeled off the numerous areas in which sectors are radically changing as a result of new technologies, and listed Snapchat’s new cash-sharing service as a “highly underestimated” move.

He referenced its latest agreement with Square – a system which lets users transfer money from within the app – as a development which will set the bar for all other messaging apps which will likely follow suit.

“Everyone highly underestimates the power they have. The deal with Square where you can send money on Snapchat form within the app – they will all [messaging apps] start to do that.”

Meanwhile he referenced Google Glass as a product which consumers are simply “not ready for”.

“Google Glass is not a liked device. It has had tremendous backlash on privacy because people don’t like to be filmed, and with this they don’t know that they are. The technology is there, the human adoption isn’t, people are not ready for it.

"Recently we saw Glass founder Babak Parviz move to Amazon with his team – so Google has essentially ditched the project. You can now buy them on eBay for half the price - £420. There will be industry cases for it, such as in health, but as a consumer item I don’t think it will reach mass,” he said.

Robots are the “next big thing”, according to de Waele, who predicted that within five years all people will have their own personalised robot.

However, with the trend towards a new kind of economy driven by the internet of things, in which everything is connected, one of the biggest disruptions could be people wanting to "unplug", according to de Waele.

“There is a whole new trend of people who want to be unplugged – they don’t want to be connected and supervised all the time by things like drones, glasses, sensors that are sniffing your presence in your homes – that could be the biggest disruption in the coming years, if everything is connected and people don’t want to be anymore,” he said.

He also predicted that as soon as Apple launches its smartwatch product, multiple smartwatch companies will “disappear” – a trend which occurred when Apple moved into mp3, resulting in the folding of many mp3 providers.

Jessica Davies

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