Irish businesses are embracing new tech – but unsure about the metaverse

27 Apr 2022

Image: © Yingyaipumi/Stock.adobe.com

Only 26pc of Irish execs anticipate that the metaverse will have a ‘breakthrough’ impact in the coming years, according to Accenture’s latest Technology Vision report.

The majority (89pc) of Irish businesses surveyed by Accenture believe that emerging technologies are now enabling their organisation to have a broader and more ambitious vision for the future.

Accenture’s Technology Vision 2022 report also found that 79pc of Irish businesses feel they have adapted to the ‘new normal’ way of operating since the pandemic.

Future Human

In total, Accenture surveyed 24,000 consumers and 4,650 C-level executives and directors for its report across 35 countries and 23 industries. In Ireland, the professional services firm surveyed senior leaders from 102 Irish companies and 500 consumers.

According to the findings, Irish business leaders saw a definitive increase in technology within their organisation over the last three years, with three-quarters of Irish executives reporting that the number of IoT or edge devices deployed in their organisation in that period has increased significantly.

Nearly all (89pc) of Irish executives surveyed agreed that their organisation’s long-term success would depend on the next generation of computing, with 92pc also saying that next-generation computing would be essential for their organisation to reach its sustainability goals.

The report suggested that there is a strong willingness from business leaders to integrate AI into their organisations, with 69pc saying they felt increasingly dependent on AI to function effectively. However, almost all of Irish executives (99pc) said they were concerned about security and data authenticity issues such as disinformation attacks and deepfakes.

These concerns are shared by Irish consumers, with only 19pc of people surveyed trusting that AI is being used to improve their lives and experiences. This is compared with 42pc of consumers globally. Just 15pc ​trust how it is being implemented by organisations, compared with 35pc globally.

Irish people also seem to be less enthusiastic about the concept of the metaverse than their global counterparts.

Two-thirds of Irish executives believe their organisation will benefit from the metaverse, with 26pc anticipating it will have a ‘breakthrough’ or ‘transformational’ impact in the next four years. While this statistic may seem high, it was significantly lower than the global average of 42pc.

Nearly three-quarters (70pc) of Irish consumers surveyed said that they had either never heard of the metaverse, or had heard the term but do not know what it means.

“The last two years have shown the critical role that technology plays in keeping us connected and finding more streamlined, efficient ways of working. It’s also great to see an openness of mind towards new technological and digital solutions from Irish business leaders,” said Dave Kirwan, head of technology at Accenture in Ireland.

“What will be critical for business success moving forward will be bringing consumers along on the journey of digitisation and facilitating the upskilling and exploration that employees need to embrace these new tools.”

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Blathnaid O’Dea is Careers reporter at Silicon Republic

editorial@siliconrepublic.com