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Cloud Computing Trends for 2015

The prediction that cloud computing would revolutionize the business world was one that proved true. According to Forbes, the mere 18% that don't yet use cloud technology plan to in the future, while 69% already do, at least to some extent. There are a few trends that began in 2015 that will continue.

New Businesses and the Cloud

Almost all new startups utilize the cloud from their inception for several reasons. The cost savings made possible by not having to purchase expensive hardware, hire an IT team and software developers to provide innovative improvements and periodically update security measures are substantial. It has become virtually impossible for the majority of new businesses to compete without the benefits of cloud computing.

While there were valid concerns about security in the beginning, those concerns have largely been addressed. Due to both better security measures and relatively new companies now having had time to prove themselves, even businesses in the financial and healthcare industries are making the switch to the cloud.

Hybrid Systems

Even with improved security, many businesses are reluctant to relinquish control of their most sensitive data. As a result, 75% of organizations are creating hybrid systems that allow them to retain complete control of their core data while using the cloud to store less vitally sensitive data.

In keeping with the trend towards hybrid systems, Infrastructure-as-a-service will continue to grow in popularity. IaaS allows users to operate their own software from the cloud instead of having to adopt and learn to use software and technologies developed specifically for the cloud. IaaS is easing the transition to the cloud. IT staff doesn't have to spend time choosing the right cloud-based software, then transferring all the data and employees don't have to learn an entirely new system. This offers businesses substantial savings both by avoiding interruptions in service during software updates and in training staff on new software.

Specialized Clouds

The government sector utilizes specialized clouds which provide both flexibility and varying degrees of security. Governmental responsibilities such as providing public access to information and avenues of communication with constituents, as well as inter-departmental communication, can be conducted at less cost to taxpayers on the public cloud. Other responsibilities, such as safeguarding databases containing citizens' legally protected information require private clouds. Some businesses, such as international corporations, also require the data localization that specialized clouds offer. Data localization ensures that data specific to a geographic area is stored in that area for the purpose of increasing security.

Innovation

One of the most exciting results of the mass migration to cloud computing is the astounding increase in innovation that has resulted. The time and money that companies saved on IT hardware purchases and maintenance have been funneled into research and development. Not only is more money available for innovation, but cloud computing allows those innovations to be tested for maximum effectiveness with minimal risk.

Cloud computing makes it easier to deploy new products as well as software upgrades gradually while using analytics to measure user responses. That means that the process of fine-tuning and getting a new product on the market is accelerated.

Standards and Guidelines

According to Gartner, Inc, while current trends are largely positive, they also entail some challenges. One of those challenges will be developing and establishing standards and guidelines for combining external elements with internal ones to form hybrid environments. To avoid taking on the form of the structure of cloud service providers, which may or may not serve an individual business's best interests, Gartner recommends applying the concept of cloud computing when building future data centers.

Another challenge is more hacking of the cloud due to the increase in BYOD combined with poor training and customer compliance. Security professionals are developing technology to detect compromise on devices and enable incident response processes. Open source container technology, like that provided by companies like Docker, is another potential threat reduction security measure.

In addition to current trends, there are also a few predictions. For example, some predict that managed on-site private clouds will become obsolete and that SaaS (Software-as-a-service) companies will expand their offerings, making the transition to hybrid cloud computing virtually irresistible.

 

Image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

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AndreSmith

About AndreSmith

Small business and marketing specialist with years of experience in the industry. He has watched as the world of online business has grown and adapted to new technologies.

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