“ Discontinued products and services are nothing new, of course, but what is new with the coming of the cloud is the discontinuation of services to which people have entrusted a lot of personal or otherwise important data – and in many cases devoted a lot of time to creating and organizing that data. As businesses ratchet up their use of cloud services, they’re going to struggle with similar problems, sometimes on a much greater scale. I don’t see any way around this – it’s the price we pay for the convenience of centralized apps and databases – but it’s worth keeping in mind that in the cloud we’re all guinea pigs, and that means we’re all dispensable. Caveat cloudster.” – Thus spake Nick Carr, author of Does IT Matter?, The Big Switch and The Shallows.
To opine that the cloud is a common facet of enterprise infrastructure is something of a mistake. While many organizations have encompassed the cloud as a means to ramp up storage capacity or even rupture workloads stockpiling during activity periods at its very pinnacle, few have integrated cloud infrastructure unto their normal data environments in ways that leading pundits say leverages the true value of the technology.
But that trend may soon enter the realm of change. It is here that New market research is starting to suggest that attitudes are being game for paradigm shifts besides enterprise executives warming up to the hypothesis which tends to view the cloud as a full functioning extension, or even a replacement of on-premise infrastructure.
In this league the first up happens to be Gartner, which reported recently that cloud computing is on pace to make up half of the total IT market by the future business year of 2016, with nearly half of all large enterprises deploying hybrid clouds by 2017, a year later, that is. The company goes on to articulate that virtualization, followed by orchestration, high-speed networking coupled with other cloud-enabling technologies have reached a tipping point of sorts via which enterprise executives can finally comprehend the pluses that cloud architectures have at the offing pitted vis-a-vis traditional infrastructure, particularly at a phase when the industry starts to confront the actualities of forays, viz. mobile computing, social networking, Big Data and other evolving trends. The Gray matters of a big question that surfaces to the fore, however, read as: – whether they will be strictly consumers of cloud services or emerge as a provider as well?
In this regard, even more telling, however, is a report hailing from U.K. staffing firm, Robert Half Technology which claims knowledge of cloud services and architectures is now the most valuable trait for new IT hires. This beat out both security and project management while vastly out-numbering coding in addition to software development, most likely an indication that many organizations are looking to retain expertise in cloud access and security in-house, while leaving such themes as infrastructure maintenance and even application development to their providers.
The span of next five years will certainly shape up to as what may be called as a crucial transition period, not just for the enterprise but the entire data ecosystem in general, lips tech consultant Daniel Burrus. Every business process in existence is likely to be affected by the cloud, including those which cover the stakes in buying, selling, marketing, communications, collaboration and education. With IT as a service rapidly gaining steam, the enterprise can refocus its technology agenda as well as policy from priorities concerning maintenance and innovation, pursuing not only such mundane matters as increased performance and lower costs but finding entirely new business opportunities and delivering new services that clients from their quarter never knew they needed.
And these trends are likely to accelerate as time verves by, primarily due to increasingly savvy marketing programs from the stables of the cloud providers themselves, according to Russell Poole, managing director of UK colocation specialist Equinix. The latest trend is to offer distinct architectural models in the Cloud Computing genre as a means to provide specific services that organizations are looking for. To date, the focus cliquishly enough, at most organizations is to “get on the cloud” and then see what can be done with it. Going forward, providers will offer targeted solutions to ongoing, seemingly intractable problems, with the added benefit that they can be implemented at lower cost and with much greater speed than traditional, on-premise systems.
Five years comes across as a long time in order to forecast anything concrete or for that matter substantial, leave alone some “Nostradamus” like predictions. No offence intended, but resource persons should go back to all the year-ahead prophecies that hit the trade press every December where one is liable to find the ratio comprising just as many misses as there are hits. But while the details may vary, the broad trend lines seem clear with the stark Writing on the wall being: The cloud is on pace to reach parity at the first place with traditional enterprise infrastructure and then eclipse it by the stretch people embark on the next decade.
And what after that? Well, it could very well be that we won’t be thrusting our queries and continue talking about the enterprise anymore, but the data service industry operating largely on a utility basis, which would in turn be cheaper and more efficient, perhaps, but not nearly as interesting it is as of now.