Source: Gartner August 2013


Way cool chart from Gartner [NOT Gartman!], looking at a variety of technologies within their long term “hype” cycle. Think about Solar or even the internet and you will see how (more or less) accurate this curve is.

The axis plot Expectations over Time, and end up running through the following 5 phases:

1. Innovation

2. Inflated Expectations

3. Trough of Disillusionment

4. Slope of Enlightenment

5.  Productivity Plateau.

I really like this concept of psychological phases over the course of a cycle . . .



Hat tip memeburns



Category: Cycles, Psychology, Technology

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7 Responses to “Gartner: Hype Cycle for Emerging Technologies”

  1. farmera1 says:

    I saw a similar shaped graph of the number of companies involved in new technology. Going back to automobiles, tractors, airplane production, and up to the internet if you track the number of companies involved in a new technology over time you get a peak with a big drop off, followed by a slowly rising number of companies until it settles out. Interesting the hype and number of companies produce a similar shaped graph.

  2. asg749d says:

    If I’m not mistaken, Gartner has this concept trademarked. They graph the acceptance level and maturity of many technology concepts and applications to keep technology managers abreast of new and existing trends.
    Independently of that is being graphed, the curve always looks the same. There’s a very good book out called
    Mastering the Hype Cycle that covers the entire concept.

  3. Frwip says:

    Fairly good representation of the life-cycle of technologies/product categories. I’ve seen that cycle first hand a few times, beginning to end.

    Now, there is something in the graph that intrigues me : the right-most classification ” Obsolete before plateau ” but with no example given. I wonder what Gartner files in that category, beyond the many obvious “technology duds” that never emerge from the through (and never amounted to much).

    Other nice touch on that graph, virtual reality shown at the bottomest bottom from its hype heydays in the early 90s. Pretty accurate assessment. Close to no one pays attention to it. Yet, the field may be in for a comeback towards broad applications, beyond the few niches where VR has survived so far (military, industrial design, etc.) At least, a number of stars are lining up on the technology front, low power GPUs, MEMS, usable APIs, expiration of core patents, etc.

  4. Mike9 says:

    There should also be the Anti-Hype cycle:
    - Solar and Wind fighting Oil Industry Propaganda.
    - Fracking Pollution Science – fighting Fracking industry
    - The Hybrid car and EV industry – fighting oil industry money.
    Biggest of them all:
    Climate Change Science – fighting OIL and Coal propaganda.

    Because, in many cases, it’s sure great we don’t have a King giving out corporate charters, because Fracking, low returns with high pollution, would never get approved.
    - Not to mention Tar Sand.

  5. [...] The “Hype Cycle” for emerging technologies | Gartner Provides “an assessment of the maturity, business benefit, and future direction of more than 2,000 technologies, grouped into 98 areas”: Charts the progress of today’s most revolutionary products & services, including each’s progress along its life cycle (in order, from innovation, peak expectations, trough of disillusionment, enlightenment & plateau of productivity); also estimates time in years before full productivity is reached. Mentions: 3D printing, augmented/virtual reality, big data, biosciences, cloud computing, holographic/volumetric displays, quantum computing, robotics, speech/gesture recognition, wearable devices, etc. [This idea speaks to the theory of our current "technology revelation," which I recently discussed.] [...]

  6. [...] Gartner Hype Cycles provide a graphic representation of the maturity and adoption of technologies and applications, and how they are potentially relevant to solving real business problems and exploiting new opportunities (Research Methodologies, Gartner). In August of 2012, Gartner released a report that indicated that 3D printing was near the top of the hype on the curve of technology adoption. It predicted that 3D printing has yet to go into its “Trough of Disillusionment” which typically results after the initial excitement and overly optimistic predictions of a new technology doesn’t quite pan out. Below you will see Gartner’s Technology Curve: [...]