Key Cloud Computing Trends for 2016
With cloud-computing adaptation hitting the fast lane, it’s time businesses analyse the factors that will keep them ready for the next two years. Regalix lists down the top five strategic cloud-computing trends that will drive your cloud engagement.
In an amazingly short span of a couple or so years, Cloud Computing has become an integral, perhaps even the most vital part of an enterprise’s IT Strategy. It has helped free-up a huge chunk of the IT from the constrictions of legacy software and hardware licensing data center models, and has opened, revolutionized and to an extent democratized the way IT delivers services and how the users access information, applications and business services.
But with the ever increasing impact the cloud has on IT, there’s also a palpable confusion about how its full value to business can be harnessed, mainly because of the continuous and rapid evolution of the cloud and its related technologies and the growing flux of vendors using portentous hyperbolic marketing speak to sell their cloud solutions.
That is why it is essential for businesses to continually monitor computing trends in order to keep updating and adapting their cloud strategies to evade expensive oversights or encash market opportunities over the coming years.
Here are Five Strategic Cloud Computing Trends that will drive cloud strategies through 2015 and 2016, and which you must factor into your cloud-planning processes to run at the speed of change.
- Hybrid Cloud Computing Is The Way Forward
Hybrid Cloud Computing means using a combination of public or private cloud services and physical application infrastructure and services.
As is evident from some recent developments/deployments, hybrid cloud computing is set to become an imperative, in the form of a unified integrated cloud model, consisting both internal and external cloud platforms that can be leveraged based on specific business requirements.
Industry Analysts and Cloud Experts recommend that enterprises should center immediate efforts on integrating the application and dynamic data infrastructures to form a hybrid solution. To avoid oversights and other glitches, they should set guidelines and standards for how the public cloud application services or applications will combine with the various components of internal systems to ensure an efficient hybrid environment.
- Cloud Services Brokerage Is Going To Be A Key Strategic Role Of IT
Over the last year, Cloud Services Brokerage (CSB) has graduated from being an option to a key strategic factor for users and IT alike. CSB essentially involves a service provider playing a liaising role in assisting the consumption of cloud computing. CSB as a trend is predicted to gather speed over the next couple of years as users choose to use cloud services, independent of IT bureaucracy.
So what the IT critically needs to do to uphold its relevance and significance is to find ways to position itself as an Enterprise CSB by creating simple, flexible, and business user-centric tools and processes (for instance modifying internal portals and service catalogs) that facilitate cloud adoption and encourage end users to seek IT’s assistance.
- Cloud Friendly Decision Frameworks Are A Business Imperative
Even the greatest skeptic now agrees that Cloud Computing offers a plethora of completely indispensible features and benefits, like cost-effective use-based models of IT consumption and service delivery, greater agility and lesser complexity. It also allows the IT to focus its resources on delivering new services that fuel innovation and accelerate the business.
Yet, the success of your cloud adoption completely depends on whether your decision making structure optimizes the gift of the cloud. You need to first ensure you alleviate any concerns that you have regarding the performance, security, availability, and integration. Once you’ve satisfyingly crossed these issues, you can go about planning, implementing and optimizing your cloud strategy.
- Application Design Must Be Cloud-Optimized
Now the way organizations go about cloud computing is to basically just transfer their enterprise workloads to the cloud or an application infrastructure. This is a good approach where the workloads need a variable supply of resources or where the application logically adapts to horizontal scalability.
But to fully extract the potential of your cloud model to deliver truly gold standard world class applications, you need to start designing applications that are cloud-optimized from paper to practice.
- Future Datacenters Need To Adopt Implementation Models Of Cloud Service Providers
In a cloud computing environment, the data center and other implementation details are handled by the service provider while the enterprise only concerns itself with service consumption.
But as enterprises carry on building/expanding their own data centers, they will be far better served applying the cloud computing implementation models of Cloud Service Providers to increase performance, efficiency, and agility.
These rapidly sprouting trends are already becoming best practices and they are bound to have profound implications on your cloud strategy, aggressively optimizing your cloud adoptions, and helping you stay abreast with the speed of change through next couple of years, if not more.
While 2015 marked the moment when cloud became the go-to platform for enterprise applications and data, there’s still plenty of maturing to go. Here’s what we expect to see from cloud computing in 2016.
Hybrid Clouds Become The Next-Gen Infrastructure Foundation
While hybrid clouds saw tremendous adoption rates in the enterprise this year, in 2016 hybrid will become the new normal for enterprise infrastructures. Gartner’s Ed Anderson recently said, “I start to think of a multi-cloud environment as a foundation for a next wave of applications.” I tend to agree.
Security Will Continue To Be A Top Concern
For businesses that entered the world of cloud computing early, the first apps and data they moved into the cloud usually did not contain or access mission-critical data. But as cloud usage continues to grow at a rapid pace and organizations warm up to cloud security, companies are looking to realize cloud benefits in a much broader range of applications. This includes applications that create, work with, and access sensitive data. Where there’s sensitive data, there’s a heightened sense of data security.
Cloud-Native Apps Become The Norm
According to Forrester Research, we are on the cusp of a second wave of cloud computing. While the first wave focused on meeting IT’s needs from a network/compute infrastructure perspective, the second wave is application-focused. Cloud providers are now focusing on how to provide services for next-gen applications that require things like time-based analytics, omni-channel support, and microservice support.
Barriers To Entering The Cloud All But Disappear
Enterprise organizations that were unable to move services to the cloud due to strict compliance requirements or regulations will find that most of these barriers to entry will disappear. Governments are adjusting rhetoric to become more cloud friendly, while cloud providers are offering more services that satisfy regulation/compliance requirements.
Containers Become Mainstream
In a recent report listing the top 10 strategic technology trends for 2016, Gartner discussed the importance of containers and their importance to next-generation cloud applications. As Gartner phrased it in its announcement, “containers are emerging as a critical technology for enabling agile development and microservice architectures.” So as our applications become a series of microservices that are stitched together, the demand for container platforms to run and maintain microservices also increases.
Movement To Cloud Data Storage (For Security Purposes)
According to research firm Markets and Markets, the cloud storage market “is expected to grow from US $18.87 billion in 2015 to US $65.41 billion by 2020, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 28.2%.” Considering how prevalent and lucrative ransomware is becoming, cloud storage is looking like more of a bargain to many organizations, if only to protect against security threats.
IoT Becomes Relevant
IoT showed some promise in 2015. But in 2016, the momentum will really start to pick up. Gartner estimates that IoT devices will increase a whopping 30% in the coming year. According to the research firm’s estimates regarding IoT spend in 2016, “enterprise will account for the largest spending.”
The chances that your service provider’s next-generation cloud architecture will be built on a hyper-converged platform will be quite high in 2016. Because there is such a large demand for cloud services, providers are looking to hyper-converged platforms to speed up scalability and reduce maintenance costs. IDC researchers predict that hyper-convergence spending will nearly double from $806.8 million in 2015 to nearly $1.6 billion in 2016.
While we don’t have a time machine that enables us to predict with certainty what the state of the cloud in 2016 will look like, these eight trends that have taken root in 2015 seem to have tremendous momentum moving into 2016. Will our predictions come true? We have a year to find out.