Productivity Future Visions

At the end of my digital transformation presentation, I usually play a short version of the Microsoft Productivity Future Vision video as a glimpse into some of the technology scenarios we might see in the future. I often recommend people go back and watch previous versions to see just how many experiences are now possible with Microsoft technology. This post pulls together some of those visions of the future spanning 18 years of future-gazing.


This is the latest video, focusing on some of the technology innovations around IoT, holographic technology, and creativity.


Looking back one step, themes around augmented and mixed reality, collaboration and productivity across device form factors, connected customer experiences, IoT are all prevalent if not yet fully realised.


Stepping back even further, to 2009. Those cross-device, cross-boundary collaboration scenarios are still there – the notion of connecting to our data anywhere, anytime. Hands-free interaction with technology gets a feature in this video, and the concept of starting work on one device and picking up on another is there. Interesting that the Surface Dial-type interaction is right there hiding in plain sight! Personally, I love the digital paper that’s featured in this video.


Whilst not technically part of the “Productivity Future Vision” series of videos, and certainly not on any of Microsoft’s official online channels, this slightly longer gem from 1999 shows some of the concepts in mind before we had WiFi, Bluetooth, 4G, broadband, the iPhone, Skype and Windows Hello… I watched this video for the first time in a very long time in writing this post and I’m amazed at how prophetic it is in predicting some of the capabilities we now take for granted. Whilst the Internet might look a little different, and our mobile phones might be a little slimmer, I’d say this 18-year-old concept showcase is eerily accurate.