As more and more businesses from all industries rush to migrate to the cloud and build cloud-based applications, Gartner predicts that the public cloud services market will grow 17% next year, from US$ 227.8 billion in 2019 to an estimated US$ 266.4 by the end of 2020. And a recent Forrester report estimates that the market will grow to a total of US$ 411 billion by 2022.
This tremendous growth is fueled by the need for businesses to innovate and digitally transform as well as the rise of emerging technologies like artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), IoT, blockchain, and many others that must rely on the cloud to deliver maximum results.
The pros of cloud adoption clearly outweigh the cons
Although valid concerns about cloud security and compliance still exist, they have diminished significantly in recent years, especially in terms of public cloud services. Today, public providers offer greatly improved security and regulatory compliance services to clients. In fact, most experts in the technology advocate that the cloud is overwhelmingly more secure than most on-premise systems.
Cloud computing offers a host of advantages including reduced costs, subscription payment models, increased application performance, and greatly improved flexibility and scalability to quickly and cost-effectively adapt to evolving business and technical requirements.
As a CIO or other business leader, the decision you need to make is no longer whether or not to migrate or build new apps in the cloud, but rather, how can you best leverage it to continue to innovate, drive revenue, and stay ahead of the competition. The top cloud computing trends we’ll explore in this article will provide some great food for thought in answering that pivotal question.
Trend #1: Hyperautomation in the Cloud
The concept of automation has existed for many years in a range of industries. But today, automation is being transformed into what’s now called “hyperautomation” thanks to emerging technologies like AI and machine learning. When applied to cloud-based application development, hyperautomation allows for more intelligent, high-quality, and dynamic provisioning, deployment, and monitoring of applications built in the cloud.
Trend #2: Quantum Computing
Technological advancements continue to demand rapidly increasing rates of data processing speed. Quantum computing has emerged as the solution to provide it, at rates exponentially superior to traditional computing.
Although cloud quantum computing is still in its infancy, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft, and IBM have begun providing cloud-based quantum computing solutions in recent years. These tech giants are setting the foundations and providing early access to quantum computing power that will, most certainly, be an essential ingredient in the business and technological innovations of tomorrow.
Trend #3: Democratization of Software Development Capabilities
Cloud-based platforms and software systems will continue to make advanced technology and the development of complex and customized software solutions available to an increasing number of small- and medium-sized businesses.
These services offer a variety of pre-built tools and off-the-shelf backend features that greatly reduce the time, risk, and cost involved with building custom applications and integrating advanced technologies. This will allow organizations of any size and from any industry to innovate and compete with larger players in the market.
Trend #4: Edge Computing for IoT
The rapidly increasing number of connected things in our world, known as the internet of things (IoT), and the increased processing power required for things like self-driving cars, for example, are driving the need for what is known as edge computing.
What is edge computing, exactly? Gartner defines it as “part of a distributed computing topology where information processing is located close to the edge, where things and people produce or consume that information.”
Edge computing greatly reduces latency and puts less strain on bandwidth than in the case of sending data to a centralized system.
Trend #5: Distributed Cloud Computing
Public cloud providers have begun to distribute their services to different geographical locations, becoming known as the distributed cloud. In this way, the cloud is broken up into multiple smaller datacenters in different locations rather than just one large datacenter. The benefits it provides include reduced latency, lowered overhead costs, and improved compliance with data-location related regulations.
These types of datacenters also help support the rapid expansion of IoT and edge computing.
Trend #6: Expansion of AI Technologies
Major players like Microsoft, Amazon, IBM, and Google have started to offer cloud-based artificial intelligence software and services. Deloitte Global predicts that the use of these services will accelerate quickly and by 2020, 83% of companies using AI software will do so via a cloud-based AI platform.
This form of AI greatly increases access to this complex technology, reducing both costs and risks involved. Expansion of AI via the cloud will allow more companies of all sizes to benefit from AI applications like process automation, predictive analysis, inventory management, fraud detection, customer service, and much more.
Trend #7: Blockchain for All
Blockchain is most well-known for its use in cryptocurrencies like bitcoin. However, this technology has the potential to be applied to any industry where tracking of any digitally-recordable transaction is needed. It provides greatly improved transparency, security, and traceability, vital in industries like supply chain and logistics, healthcare, oil and gas, among many others.
Cloud service providers like Amazon, Microsoft, and IBM are now making it much easier for companies of any size and any industry to adopt blockchain technology through Blockchain-as-a-Service (BaaS) offerings. With this service model, the provider takes care of creating, configuring, and maintaining the massive complexities of blockchain technology, greatly lowering the cost and risk involved with creating blockchain-based applications for the client.
Trend #8: Containerization in Application Development
Containerization, defined as the encapsulation of software code and all of its dependencies into a single package, is one of the most important advancements in cloud-based software development in recent years. According to a recent Gartner report (as reported by CIO.com), “by 2023, more than 70% of global organizations will be running more than two containerized applications in production, up from less than 20% in 2019.”
As an alternative or complementary option to virtualization, containerization offers a host of comparative advantages, including increased scalability, availability, performance and security. For example, a single server can host far more containers than virtual machines due to the lightweight nature of containers. Containerized applications are also much faster than virtual machines, booting up almost instantly compared to several minutes. Containerization also allows for greater modularity, complementing and supporting a microservices approach to application development.
The Bottom Line
These exciting cloud computing trends for 2020 signal that the future of cloud computing is bright and it will be an essential part of the tech landscape for many years to come. It will also continue to play an integral role in supporting and making other key technological advancements more readily available to companies of all sizes and all industries.
TEAM International has years of experience helping clients around take full advantage of the benefits the cloud has to offer. Whether you’re looking to implement containerization, cloud-based AI, edge computing, or any of the other cloud computing trends mentioned in this article, our nearshore/offshore and onshore teams have the capabilities and expertise to make it happen. We can also assist with cloud migration projects (including Microsoft Azure and AWS), cloud-based application development, as well as with cloud enablement consulting services.
Do you have a cloud computing project planned for 2020? We can help. Contact us today and tell us about your project.