The biggest tech trends of 2021 explained

Tech trends of 2021

Welcome to 2021, where cryptocurrency and 5G are hot topics, and your phone can talk to your refrigerator!

Tech is developing and expanding at a rapid pace and it can be hard to keep up sometimes! We’ve got you covered though. Below you’ll find a little cheat sheet on the biggest tech trends of 2021, so you can drop things like ‘edge computing’ and ‘IoT’ into your next technology convo and totally know what you’re talking about!


Say hello to the next gen of global wireless tech! 5G is the fifth generational mobile network and it’s been designed to connect pretty much everything together – people, machines and, of course, devices. With 5G, download speeds are up to 100 times faster than 4G, streaming is seamless and real-time gaming is possible.

Internet of Things (IoT)

If you hear someone talking about the IoT, they’re referring to the billions of devices around the world that are connected to the Internet. These devices are equipped with sensors, software and other tech so they can exchange data with other devices. Anything can become part of the IoT if it has a computer chip and can connect to a wireless network – cars, industrial tools and even kitchen appliances.

Edge computing

Edge computing brings data storage closer to a device’s source, rather than relying on the cloud in a faraway location. It won’t replace cloud computing though – it’s more like the cloud coming to you! Proximity improves latency (response time), and this will be super helpful in areas like Artificial Intelligence, machine learning and IoT data processing.


Think of blockchain as a shared digital ledger that helps the process of recording transactions and tracking assets. It’s probably most famous for transferring cryptocurrency like Bitcoin, but it’s used in everything from government to transportation. It’s popular because it can deliver information fast, transparently and securely.

And FYI, Blockchain was the number one skill on LinkedIn’s list of the 10 skills most likely to get you hired in 2020.

Virtual reality (VR)

VR is all about using computer technology to create a simulated environment that can be explored – and it’s not just for gaming! VR is used in healthcare, retail, tourism, architecture, education and the automotive industry.

Keen on a career in technology? We’ve rounded up a whole bunch future tech jobs in Australia for you.

Louise Meers

Author: Louise Meers

Louise is the production editor for Careers with STEM. She has a journalism degree from the University of Technology, Sydney and has spent over a decade writing for youth. She is passionate about inspiring young people to achieve their biggest goals and build a better future.


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