The changes that were accelerated due to the events of 2020 will continue to gain momentum as we move towards 2021. Trends like Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT) will be crucial factors in driving technology innovation over the next year. However, it can be argued that the most significant uses of AI will involve helping us to adapt and survive in the changing times we are living through. No trend is more relevant to this than Cloud Computing. Cloud Computing is the backbone of the data-driven, app-based technology movement that has transformed the way businesses operate over the last few years. Everything from managing a mobile workforce, to telehealth services, to database management has been enhanced and transformed by Cloud services. Through 2021, we at MOQdigital expect this rate of digital transformation to accelerate as businesses continue to adopt Cloud models. Here are some ways that we see this developing over 2021:
Leveraging AI for speed and efficiency
AI technology is changing the way the world does business. A study by PwC calculated that global GDP will increase by 14% by 2030 as a result of AI adoption, contributing an additional $15.7T to the global economy. Microsoft’s vision for AI in enterprises is based strongly on how leveraging AI transforms platforms. These Cloud-based as-a-service platforms enable users on any budget and with any level of skill to access machine learning functions such as image recognition tools, language processing, and recommendation engines. Cloud Computing will continue to allow these toolsets to become more widely deployed by enterprises of all sizes and in all fields, leading to increased productivity and efficiency.
Smart city infrastructure, inventory management systems, and pandemic response planning are just some examples of fields in which the effects of leveraging AI will be felt through Cloud services. AI also plays a big part in the logistics processes that keep Cloud data centres up and running. Cooling systems, hardware, and power usage in these delicate and expensive environments can all be monitored and managed by AI algorithms to optimize running efficiency and minimize their impact on the environment. Continued research and development into this field is likely to lead to new breakthroughs in data centre speed and efficiency.
Hybrid and on-premise Cloud solutions with CSPs
Choosing between a public, private, or hybrid cloud environment has been a complicated decision at best. Each route offers advantages and disadvantages when it comes to flexibility, performance, security, and compliance. But as cloud ecosystems have matured, many have found there's no magic one-size-fits-all solution around.
With Microsoft doubling down on their Cloud Solution Provider (CSP) program, CSPs like MOQdigital enable businesses to select the individual elements of Hybrid or multi-Cloud environments that are tailored to their needs. The growing trend leans towards Microsoft’s predictions that enterprises want flexibility in deploying their Cloud tools and technologies across their existing and on-premise networks. We believe that this increased focus on flexibility and modality will continue to evolve Cloud Computing services through 2021.
Virtual Desktops – More common in 2021
The circumstances of 2020 have forced many enterprises to explore virtualisation solutions that may not have been considered before. Nonetheless, these enterprises have been able to reap the benefits, ranging from lowering hardware costs to removing redundant technology from their investments. Desktop virtualisations like Microsoft’s Windows Virtual Desktop have seen an increase in usage this past year. This Desktop-as-a-Service model increases the efficiency of a workforce by ensuring that everyone is using the latest, synchronized technology.
This trend is likely to continue well into 2021, as this year has shown that business can not only survive but thrive on virtualisation solutions. The benefits of decreased costs, centralised device management, and secure networking mean that enterprises that have already deployed such solutions are likely to maintain, if not invest deeper in such solutions.
Viewing everything with a Security Lens
The resounding worth or risk of any Cloud use will always depend on preserving data security. Key to this trend will be the growing movement of Cloud Security Consolidation. Organisations understand the inherent risk in using dozens of security products to manage Cloud infrastructure, and will look to platforms like Azure, with its built in single-pane view of security that will provide organisations with a high-level view of all their Cloud assets and security solutions and policies. We have found this to be the case with our customers in 2020, and we expect this focus to widen in 2021 as Cloud becomes a vital part of business operations.
Cloud Computing is just one of the major trends that we expect to see drive technology development in 2021 and beyond. If you would like to learn more about how MOQdigital can help you drive your journey to the Cloud, please contact us below.