Amazon CTO Werner Vogels’ tech predictions for 2024


Werner Vogels has a front-row seat on how technology is changing the world. As Amazon’s chief technology officer, he’s charged with driving the company’s technology vision and has been an ardent advocate for democratising the tools needed to scale businesses through Amazon Web Services.

Vogels, who did his PhD in Amsterdam on distributed systems technologies for enterprise computing, came to Amazon from Cornell in 2004. In addition to his day job, he also comments on trends and topics in technology through his blog, All Things Distributed.

So when he offered to talk about his annual tech predictions, we listened. In a year dominated by generative AI, it’s no surprise that it will continue to drive innovation in 2024. But Vogels sees generative AI becoming more “culturally aware” — trained on a more diverse range of data that will lead to more nuanced and accurate results, making the technology more accessible and useful to users worldwide. “If you ask an English-core large language model to summarize a book by Isabel Allende, you’d probably get a very different answer than a model trained on South American content,” he says. “There is now a culture shift happening.”

Back in 2021, he predicted that generative AI would start to play a major role in the way software was written. Now, he believes it will fundamentally redefine developer productivity, becoming “tireless collaborators” that will blur the lines between product managers, engineers, architects and more.

Vogels also believes “FemTech” has reached an inflection point, thanks to a surge in investment, data and demand. “We’ll see much more precision medicine targeting the issues that women have,” he says. Moreover, he argues that this shift will transform the wider healthcare industry.

Finally, he predicts that 2024 will be the year in which the college education model will finally crack in favour of industry-led skills-based training. That means companies have to shift not only how they hire but also how they design the workplace to make sure their people are constantly learning.

“I’m very optimistic, not only because of generative AI,” says Vogels. “ I see more and more businesses arriving that want to do good. They really are tackling hard problems … I’m very very optimistic.”

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