Happy New Year and Welcome to a brand new, and mostly shiny week-note called techspel, which sucks on the fire hydrant of the internet, passes it through a filtration system and adds a shake of magic 8-ball.

In short, towards the end of every week we will share a handful of snippets from across the technology industry with relevance to music, radio, ad-tech, mobile as well as emerging technologies including virtual / augmented reality and machine learning.

However, for this first week-note, we give you predictions for 2017 …

Intel has fingers in virtually every pie going and think that the big stories for 2017 will be 5G (due for roll out in 2020), Autonomous vehicles, Artificial Intelligence and Virtual Reality. Voice control doesn’t even get a mention for those that got an Amazon Echo for Christmas and are wondering.

With major advances in telematics and Autonomous vehicles on the way … it was only a matter of time before people started to address the issue of vehicles communicating with each other in an attempt to reduce accidents.

Music consumption and attendance at live events increased 5%  last year and expect to see more virtual reality as the lines between being at home and being at the gig blurs thanks to cool vendors like Melody VR.

Will 2017 be the year that Snap and Dropbox IPO, Apple (or Amazon) acquire Tidal for access to artists and exclusives and will Facebook make a bid for Spotify? More certain is that Facebook will promote its Live Audio feature, similar to Live Video that launched in 2016. LBC are a launch partner and expect to see further growth in podcast consumption around the corner. But is this just about Facebook recognising how big the audio opportunity is? Or more about training its audience to consume content with the sound on again.

Data protection will get serious for anyone in ad-tech (as we are with DAX) when the GDPR shakes up programmatic. The reporting of cyber-attacks will be commonplace in 2017 after the Russian influence on the US Presidential Elections and the release of the Miari malware released via OpenSource which affected websites including GitHub, Twitter, Reddit, Netflix , Airbnb and Spotify. We have noticed known parts of the Mirai Network attempting to connect to our infrastructure and have managed to deny access, but our intrusion detection system is very manual and requires constant monitoring.