2020 (And Beyond)
It has been a wild 10 years of technology and I'm barely touching the surface of each year, only noting some of the biggest releases and game changers in the last decade. But the next decade, in both my personal and professional opinion is going to be the most important in human history.
It's not just consumer level technology like CPUs and GPUs, but rather quantum computing, AI (artificial intelligence), self-driving cars, health technology, 5G connectivity, and everything in between. I could write an article on that alone, but in consumer technology (which is what I'm focusing on here) is going to be super exciting in 2020 and beyond.
Xbox Series X
Microsoft will have what should be the most powerful console ever released with its Xbox Series X console in 2020, and should be the fastest of the next-gen consoles between the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5. Microsoft (along with Sony) will be tapping a semi-custom SoC that will pack Zen 2 and Navi parts that will enable 4K 60FPS gaming, hardware ray tracing, and totally next-generation graphics and games. I seriously can't wait to see what these next-gen consoles can do.
Sony was the first to announce and begin the hype train of its next-gen PlayStation 5 console, something that will also pack a semi-custom SoC from AMD in the form of a 7nm part combining Zen 2 and RDNA 2 technologies. Sony will be launching its next-gen PlayStation 5 console in November/December 2020, which to what I'm sure will be a LOT of fanfare.
The foldable smartphone game is only beginning with Samsung's just-released Galaxy Fold and the Chinese exclusive in Huawei's own foldable smartphone in the Mate X. 2020 will see a bunch of new foldable smartphones released, and as they mature we should begin to see a merging of the smartphone/tablet markets in 2021 and beyond as foldable screen technology continues to improve.
5G is also just beginning, with 2020 and beyond being the time when 5G really takes off and makes its way into 10s of millions of smartphones and then in 2021-2022, 100s of millions of smartphones. In the next 5 years we'll see 5G dominate so much that you won't be able to buy a smartphone without it, unless you go into the budget ranges of smartphones in 2025+.
NVIDIA will unleash its next-gen Ampere GPU architecture and GeForce RTX 3000 series in 2020, and they should be faster than ever. Normal graphics performance should be still seeing NVIDIA as the GPU king, and I'm expecting some gigantic improvements in real-time ray tracing performance so we can finally see 4K 60FPS with RTX bells and whistles enabled.
AMD RDNA 2.0 / Navi 20
I think I'm just as excited over the unveiling of AMD's next-gen RDNA 2.0 technology, with the Navi 20 (or at least what it should arrive as) being a truly kick ass GPU. AMD has learned a lot since the release of its first-gen Navi and new RDNA architecture in the Radeon RX 5700 series, with the new RDNA 2.0-powered goodness making its way into next-gen consoles. PC gamers should be excited for a truly awesome all-Team Red PC in 2020.
AMD Ryzen 4000 Series
AMD is expected to win big with its Ryzen 4000 series in 2020, with some great IPC performance gains and I'm sure more cores and threads in the mainstream. We will also see some refreshes in new Ryzen Threadripper and EPYC processors, with AMD's winning streak to only continue through 2020 in the CPU division, too.
Intel Tiger Lake CPUs
Intel will be introducing its new Tiger Lake CPUs in 2020 and will better compete against AMD's continued threat in the CPU space and the introduction of the Ryzen 4000 series processors in 2020. Tiger Lake will also pack some Xe GPU goodness, so we should expect some better integrated graphics performance and what should be our fir st real tease of the Xe GPU architecture before the dGPU launches later in 2020.
Intel Discrete Graphics Card (Xe)
Intel is going to be entering the discrete graphics card business in 2020, and while at first it won't beat down the doors of NVIDIA and its dominant GeForce RTX series or AMD's new beginnings in the Navi GPU architecture -- it'll be one of the biggest tech releases of 2020. Intel entering the GPU space means we'll have a 3rd player -- something that hasn't happened since the Intel i740 (I actually loved that card, shout out to i740 owners who also played Trespasser at the time on it with AGP) or 3dfx (seriously, some of my best gaming/tech memories are with that card).
You thought I was going to finish this article without mentioning AI, didn't you? We all know artificial intelligence is littered throughout our lives, but I don't think (even most of us) really know just how much. It's not just "OK Google" and "Hey Siri" that is powered by AI, but countless other technologies and industries are being infiltrated (some good, some bad) by AI. We will only see AI totally take over (hopefully for the better) in the next decade.
Last updated: Dec 30, 2019 at 06:11 am CST