As 2012 comes to a close, we can expect cloud computing to continue to gain users both in the consumer and enterprise markets. The following ongoing trends could very well gain momentum in 2013. As with all IT, however, this is no guarantee. Change is certain, but the actual nature of the change may elude us until it happens.
1. Cloud Storage Evolves – As it stands, cloud storage is very popular in the consumer markets with specialty companies like Dropbox and larger multi-service companies like Amazon, Apple, and Google, all getting in on the action. In 2013, we will see more enterprise cloud storage solutions and more companies demanding bandwidth to accommodate short-term and long-term cloud storage.
2. Converged Cloud – Many organizations now have applications and data in their private clouds and in the public cloud. Cloud providers are now realizing that these companies need a merging of the two. The converged cloud will see hybrid cloud deployments that work seamlessly across on-premise and remote installations.
3. The Big Data Cloud – Not every company has the infrastructure to house big data servers. This is a golden opportunity for cloud providers, as big data is such a fast growing market. Look for providers like Amazon and HP to try to cash in big on cloud-based big data storage and analytics.
4. Money, Money, Money – You do not have to understand the fiscal cliff to know that it is about money and that enterprises may have even tighter budgets in 2013. CIOs will try to lessen the hemorrhaging by looking for cost-saving IT. The cloud has always promised savings, and many more companies will put it to the test in 2013.
5. Mobility Pushes Consumers and Workforce into the Cloud – You may hear about the cloud in the news or on sites like this and think, “Yeah right. The cloud isn’t for me.” In reality you are likely already using the cloud for something like web-based email, music storage, or even just for a gaming account on Steam, Playstation 3, or Xbox 360. As IT continues to become more mobile, both in private lives and in the work place, cloud access to applications and data will no longer be a luxury or a cost-saving measure. It will become a necessity.
The cloud will play a prominent role for many in the coming year. More cloud providers will emerge, and it will become more critical than ever to be able to sort out the credible offers from the bogus ones. In 2013, the cloud may be bigger news than ever for IT.