Daily, many of us use cloud services without even paying attention to this fact. We use cloud-hosted apps to update our profiles on social media or check our bank balances.
Businesses benefit from cloud technology as well. It allows organizations to expand and adapt quickly. They are able to accelerate innovation, drive business agility, streamline their activities, and lower operational costs.
The cloud is the backbone of the data-driven, app-based tech ecosystem. It is beneficial to individuals as well as corporations. Cloud services led to a revolution in everything from contact tracing to home delivery services and remote medicine solutions.
Here are the most significant trends expected to advance in 2021:
- Edge is the new cloud
Edge computing is becoming popular with the trend of decentralization. Computing and management are handled locally instead of on the central cloud network. It places data storage and computing closer to where the data is generated and consumed. This process reduces latency, provides faster real-time responsiveness, and optimizes bandwidth. Many industry experts believe that cloud and edge computing will co-exist to deliver a true real-time experience to end users in 2021.
According to Forrester, “In 2021, we will see new business models emerge that facilitate the deployment of edge, efforts by cloud platforms to compete, and AI and 5G facilitating the expansion of edge use cases.”
Vendors including Dell, HPE, IBM, and Intel are doubling down on the edge with cloud-like solutions deployable anywhere. According to IDC, 40% of enterprises will double their IT spending on Edge locations and nearby colocation facilities by 2022.
- Artificial Intelligence will play a greater role
AI engineering is bound to reach new heights with the help of the cloud. Gartner reports that without AI engineering, most organizations will fail to move AI projects beyond proofs of concept and prototypes to full-scale production.
AI will become more relevant in the workplace as companies use it to streamline business processes and eliminate manual tasks. Increased use of AI for data analysis will help companies gain better insight into their products and services. It will organize the workflows that include payroll automation, budget forecasting, and compliance.
- Multi-cloud and hybrid cloud environments will continue to grow in popularity
Businesses admit that cloud data management isn’t about having one specific cloud platform or infrastructure. It is about choosing the solution that is right and readily available for the job. In some cases, this isn’t about the cloud at all. It could be on-premises or even legacy systems.
Enterprise leaders recognize that not all clouds work for all of their needs. Some of their legacy systems and applications perform better on their existing on-premises infrastructure. These conclusions and a growing need for both flexibility and reliability have opened the way for the growth of hybrid and multi-cloud setups.
Most organizations don’t make the transition from on-premises to multi-vendor deployments all at once. Still, 93% of businesses have already developed a multi-cloud strategy. As more workloads are migrated to the cloud, the industry is becoming more sensitive to the unique requirements for various processes. More organizations will develop entirely cloud-native applications with little to no architectural dependence on a specific cloud provider.
More organizations accept the strengths of private, public, and industry-specific clouds as well as legacy on-premises setups. Thus, more cloud and data center vendors do their best to create hybrid and multi-cloud connections among diverse systems.
- Serverless Computing
Serverless computing is another trend that will see large-scale adoption in 2021. It allows developers to code freely. The cloud provider does all the infrastructure management with a pay-for-value billing model. Serverless computing eliminates the need for cloud app developers to have extensive expertise in AWS or Google Cloud Platform. Since they only need to interact with the serverless interface, developers can be more productive. They can focus on development, UX, and UI instead of IT infrastructure. With the increased adoption of serverless computing, we can expect to see more developer collaboration tools to help front-end teams optimize workflow.
The serverless computing market is forecasted to grow with a CAGR of over 25% from 2021 to 2026.
According to Swanson, the industry is already on this path with containers and cloud-hosted common applications, which drive the need for applications to be composed of smaller components that can be treated differently, including running in different locations.
- Data Privacy and Governance
Migration to the cloud for digital transformation projects accelerates. Thus, data governance and compliance have become critical. To support the new way of working and living after the pandemic, organizations move even more data to the cloud. As a result, data security, privacy, and compliance will be top priorities in IT strategies this year. Unfortunately, over 50% of organizations don’t have the appropriate security management systems in place for their cloud applications. It creates an adverse effect on their overall security infrastructure.
However, according to Balaji Ganesan, co-founder and CEO of Privacera, a data governance and security solution provider, and co-founder of Apache Ranger, in 2021 things will change. Security, privacy, and governance will become programmatically embedded early on in business processes. Every mission-critical business process is expected to have security as a requirement before implementation.
Standalone data security and governance tools will finally become an integral part of mission-critical business processes.
Cloud computing empowered businesses of all sizes to stay afloat during the pandemic. We can see that it will continue to develop and gain popularity. In the coming years, cloud-based services will be more efficient, accessible, and adaptable. These promising cloud trends will enable organizations to reach the full potential of the cloud and prove essential to their growth. So, take advantage of these trends to expand your organization's possibilities.