10 Predictions for M&A Deals, New Trends in Tech for 2013

By Don Douglas  JAN 08, 2013 11:56 AM

Plus, the highlights and lowlights of last year's predictions.


With 2012 in the books, let’s revisit last year’s predictions (click here for 2012 forecast) and try to glean a few insights into what 2013 has in store for us. 
2012 M&A Picks With Performance Data

      Closing Price Last Trade or Price Percentage of
    Acquired 1/6/2012 1/4/2013 Change
InterDigital IDCC No 42.07 44.12 4.87%
InterNAP INAP No 5.74 7.05 22.82%
Netflix NFLX No 86.1 95.98 11.48%
RIM RIMM No 15.34 11.95 -22.10%
Nokia NOK No 5.24 4.16 -20.61%
Sprint^ S Yes 2.19 5.92 170.32%
Riverbed RVBD No 25.77 21.14 -17.97%
ZIX ZIXI No 2.96 2.9 -2.03%
Tekelec* TKLC Yes 10.95 11  
        Average Gain 18.35%
* - Accidentally listed from the prior year as they had already agreed to be acquired
^ - Still trades but majority stake taken by Softbank    
Highlights of 2012 – On the Money
Lowlights of 2012 – Early Though Still Possible Now let’s take a look at what may be in store for 2013. 
2013 Tech Themes and Forecast

1. M&A for 2013
I expect quite a few mergers of necessity. This doesn’t mean they will take place at the most advantageous price for purchasers or shareholders.
2. Apple Has to Do Something New, Right?
While I could talk about why an iTV type of product still seems likely, I am going to switch my focus to personal M2M. Just walk into an Apple store and what do you see? All sorts of devices that communicate with your PC/smartphone/tablet via Bluetooth or the Internet. What do these devices do? Some of the early models analyze how well you sleep, give you a high level display of alerts on your wrist, track how many steps you take, how much exercise you are getting, etc. Even Nike (NYSE:NKE) has gotten into the fray. In December 2012, the FDA approved a heart rate monitor for the iPhone. In 2013, Apple will jump into this space with a wrist-based device to gather and share data. The new Apple Nano should have been this product, but we will have to wait.

3. Facebook Comeback
Facebook has its hooks in everything, and in 2013 its monetization of those inroads will become more evident as the stock works back to the IPO price with a few detours along the way.

4. Smartphone Cameras
Smartphone cameras are now a given, but the quality is still lacking. Sure, it is acceptable for posting to Instagram, but in most cases just not quite good enough to replace dedicated portable cameras. This year we see a number of major improvements that will widen usefulness.

5. Cloud War
There are just far too many services in the cloud, so expect mergers, failures, and new product launches. Apple, Google, Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) and Microsoft all have strengths and weaknesses in the cloud today. Look for this war to heat up in 2013 as we haven’t seen anything yet. There are a number of platforms and products ripe for the picking. Pinterest or Yelp (NYSE:YELP), anyone? 

6. Crowdsourcing Goes Mainstream
This trend was identified in 2011 and has grown greatly. With the public and mainstream media finally getting wise, we will see it everywhere in 2013.

7. Microsoft
The company finally makes some headway with its Windows Phone 8 and launches a new Xbox. By the way, the prediction that Lync would be a huge success two years ago has continued to hold true. UC strategists are stating that Cisco now views Lync as its top threat even above Avaya. Lync will make even further inroads in 2013, hurting Cisco and Avaya in the process.

8. Laws Slow Cloud Adoption for Large Companies
There are still many questions. How would an Internet kill switch possibly affect enterprise customers? Even outside of a black swan event such as this, there are still too many gray areas that risk-averse companies just can’t get around. For big companies, there is still little case law and precedents to reference. Look for consumers and small businesses to continue marching into the cloud, eyes wide shut.

9. Platform as a Service (PaaS) to Explode
These offerings have been limited, but as businesses get more involved this segment should start getting more action. Note: Oracle (NASDAQ:ORCL) recently took a stake in Engine Yard to get a foot in this space.

10. Flexible Displays
New materials will allow new form factors for a variety of displays. Samsung (PINK:SSNLF) is already rumored to be preparing a smartphone that will use this technology.
What do you see happening in 2013? Post your comments and thoughts below.

Editor's Note: This article was originally published on Liquid Networx.
Position in FB

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