In business, we always talk about the future. What does the future of business hold for us? Where should you invest in marketing today to be prepared for future trends? How should we adapt our business to meet future economic conditions? What parts of online business will change the way we interact? Today I want to address as best I can what the future of social networks will be like.

While it’s impossible to say exactly what the future will look like, we can make an educated guess about what networking sites will look like five years from now.

First of all, the trend towards mobile devices will almost certainly continue, as the number of cell phones in existence is gigantic. The Internet will not be perceived in 5 years as something you get on your computer, but will be a Blackberry, iPhone or other smartphone. As a Blackberry user for the past two years, and as a person who has a wife who is an iPhone fanatic, I’ve seen how many amazing things you can do while you’re away from home. Searching online and finding the information you need is at your fingertips.

Second, I feel like VR will become a bigger part of social media as services like OoVoo and Skype become more popular. More people are using the relatively inexpensive video conferencing tools out there to connect with their friends, family and associates. The videoconference will lead us to use social networks on a three-dimensional level. Sites like Second Life are just the beginning of our adaptation to virtual reality social networking, or as I like to call it, virtual networking.

This type of virtual network will allow us not only to connect through video, voice and chat, but to add another dimension in our communications with people from all over the world. Imagine calling someone in New York and talking to a friend in Tokyo as if they were right next to you on Facebook while browsing your profile and looking at your wall.

What will the world of 2015 look like in terms of social media? It’s too early to tell, but based on trends, we expect to see more mobile apps and virtual networks as a bigger part of our daily social media experience.

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