It’s difficult to approximate when the economic uncertainty will end this year amid the outbreak of COVID-19. To some, it might feel like life is somewhat on-hold right now, but while uncertainty exists there are plenty of business sectors doing their bit to try and maximize the opportunities this scenario presents. As industries and commerce around the world seeks to maintain a semblance of normality, let’s assess the following growth sectors that are certain to buck the trend in 2020.
Video conferencing providers
As more businesses and self-employed professionals are confined to their homes, there has already been a greater reliance on video conferencing software to stay connected and organized. One of the main brands on the lips of businesses is Silicon Valley-based Zoom. The platform’s CEO Eric Yuan admitted at the start of March that Zoom had experienced a “large increase in the number of free users”, as colleagues, friends and family seek to adapt to new ways of interacting and working. Other platforms such as Slack are also capable of providing real-time interaction that’s suitable for both informal brainstorming and more formal meetings and interviews.
For public health reasons, most live poker rooms across the globe are having to close their doors. Subsequently, more players will return to online sites, with PokerStars recently recording a new world record for the highest number of entrants into an online poker tournament, capped at a maximum of 107,000 players for the Sunday Million event. It’s the social interaction of poker rooms and casino floors that are one of the biggest attractions to its customers. The chance to chat with fellow players and table dealers and unwind can be a huge release from the stresses and strains of everyday life. It’s likely iGaming platforms will increasingly step in to fill this void.
On-demand streaming services
Given that more families will be spending time at home together, it is almost certain that on-demand streaming platforms such as Netflix and Amazon Prime will thrive. As multi-generational families require entertainment to pass the time, movies, comedy shows and boxsets will offer much-needed short-term escapes. Of course, Amazon’s other large e-commerce arm will also be working at full power to deliver goods to people across the globe. Whether it’s DIY and gardening tools or cupboard essentials from wholesalers, Amazon will be leading the way during the stay-at-home economy.
5G communications networks
The increased demand of on-demand streaming services also reinforces the need to escalate the roll-out of 5G connectivity to ease the strain on broadband. 5G, which is the fifth generation of wireless technology, is designed to make connection speeds faster for mobile devices and indeed devices with wireless connectivity built in. There are two key players in the 5G arena, with Verizon and Qualcomm working hard and fast to usher in a new 5G network with unheralded capacity and record-low latency. Aside from the entertainment industry, 5G connectivity is also expected to transform light and heavy industries, with 5G-enabled potential for the Internet of Things (IoT) set to improve the efficiency of everything from construction sites to mines.
Recipe box delivery services
Given that many people are going to struggle to get the supplies they need for their pantries and cupboards in the coming weeks and months, there’s no doubt the recipe box delivery services will provide a hugely convenient alternative for many vulnerable citizens. Firms like HelloFresh, Gousto and Mindful Chef are committed to designing meals delivered to the doorsteps of customers nationwide. Many of these suppliers use highly experienced chefs and nutritionists to create exciting yet healthy dishes, with bags containing all the ingredients a customer needs to cook it from scratch.
Before the global economy recovers and resets itself in the post-pandemic era, it’s important to celebrate those innovators that are still dedicating time and energy to keeping the wheels of commerce and entertainment turning for businesses and consumers alike.