Tech Trends in Costa Rica

Goals

Identify trends emerging in 2020 in the digital and technology industries (including e-commerce, connectivity, digital paid media, streaming services, IoT) in order to inform a talk about Costa Rica's future in the digital and technology industries.

Early Findings

Trends among Large Corporations

  • The San Jose city government plans to transform the city's abandoned buildings into modern office spaces in 2020. Technology giants like Microsoft plan to move into these spaces.
  • The medical technology sector has been booming in Costa Rica since the 2000s. There are nine times more life science companies in Costa Rica in 2019 than in 2009.

Trends among Startups and SMEs

  • Costa Rica ranks sixth in Latin America for entrepreneurial activity, so businesses across different technology sectors, like manufacturing, microchips, life sciences, software, and fintech, are flourishing.
  • Fintech development and artificial intelligence are expected to blossom in 2020.
  • Startups in Costa Rica are getting increasingly better support from incubators and accelerators like Telefonica's Open Future, ParqueTec, and Carao Ventures.
  • Technology trends for small- and medium-sized businesses in Costa Rica include AI, machine learning, blockchain, and ERP.
  • The province of Guanacaste is emerging as Costa Rica's tech hub with companies like Ad Astra Rocket, Avantica, Unidad 22, Nimiq, and the Continum Data Center.
  • While other Latin American countries have limited or banned cryptocurrency, Costa Rica welcomes cryptocurrency, giving rise to innovation in the sector.

Other Relevant Information

  • Across Latin America, AI as a service, 5G data networks, self-driving cars, personalized and predictive medicine, vision by computers, and blockchain are expected to be trends in 2020.
  • In 2020, Costa Rican universities plan to promote technology careers to draw in further tech investment.
  • Some of the jobs expected to be in high demand in 2020 include information and communication technologies analysts, life and manufacturing science engineering, and digital animators.

Proposed next steps:

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Our initial research revealed a diversity of information about upcoming trends in the digital and technology industries in Costa Rica. Through our research, we noted a difference between the trends for large corporations and small- and medium-sized businesses and startups. We recommend continuing our research into technology trends in Costa Rica according to these two segments. For each segment, we would dedicate a request to identifying 4-5 emerging trends in the digital and technology industries. For each trend, we would explain why it is a recent or emerging trend, explain what it is, and provide 1-2 companies that are engaging in this trend.
Alternatively, we could focus on the segments initially outlined in the chat (e-commerce, connectivity, digital paid media, streaming services, IoT). For each of these five segments, we would dedicate a request to identifying 4-5 recent or emerging trends. For each trend, we would explain why it is a recent or emerging trend, explain what it is, and provide 1-2 companies that are engaging in this trend.