The current year will pave a new way for the cloud momentum to grow, say experts
Diksha Gupta, TechGig.com
According to Verizon Enterprise Solutions' 2016 State of the Market: Enterprise Cloud report, 69 per cent of enterprises say cloud has enabled them to re-engineer one or more of their business processes, 88 per cent say it improves responsiveness to business needs, and 65 per cent say it improves overall operations. The data speaks volumes about the fact that cloud has arrived in a big way and there is not one business that is left untouched by the magic of cloud in one way or the other. While is 2015 cloud reached various verticals across the board, in 2016, the popularity, usability and reach of cloud will touch an all-new level.
"A growing number of organisations have made cloud their preferred choice. It's not just natives; many pragmatists are now thinking 'cloud first'. Whether it's developing internet of things services, increasing use of mobility or creating new customer experiences, cloud is often an important enabler. Bringing services together in the cloud can help companies integrate systems and data, accelerate innovation and align business and IT strategies," said Prashant Gupta, head of solutions, Verizon Enterprise Solutions India.
IoT: The leading driver
2016 will witness cloud touching newer heights and IoT will be its main driver.
"Internet of Things (IoT) would be the leader in driving the growth in cloud. It is hard to find a single device that does not have at least a couple of sensors generating nothing but data. The devices have limited amount of space to hold the data being generated and finally the data needs to be pushed to some external storage," said Dr Rajeev Papneja, executive vice president and COO, ESDS Software Solution.
"The Smart Cities project is a big initiative by the government and the amount of data that will be generated from smartphones, cameras, GPS instruments and other devices is estimated to be around 4.1 terabytes per day per square km. of urban land."
In addition, startups are also banking on cloud to save infrastructure cost.
"With the Startup India initiative, more and more small entrepreneurs will come up. They will be leveraging the power of cloud to develop and host their applications," said Dr Papneja.
"Startups have a ton of things on their plate, and cost-effective cloud services will be their choice, instead of investing their time, money and other precious resources to manage IT infrastructure. Mobile manufacturers have started giving applications such as Twitter, Facebook and Dropbox preinstalled with devices and are looking to harness the power of cloud for differentiation. Organisations own data and in effect own the customer," he said.
Experts also opine that a huge jump in customers opting for disaster recovery services will also add to the cloud momentum. Cloud is an apt platform for disaster recovery as it provides pay-per-use billing model and helps organisations have recovery at less than 70 per cent of cost as compared to the traditional way.
Anand Kadur, vice president-cloud and channels, APAC & Middle East, Aspect Software, has a different view.
"Cloud adopters are 5.2 times more likely to be heavy technology adapters. These days, cloud is viewed as a fashion statement. However, 2016 will witness a change in this mindset as an increasing number of enterprises realise the efficiency, scalability, and diversity of platform that they can avail of through cloud," he said.
"Another key driver will be freedom of choice - the end user/customer expects to have a feature-rich solution and flexibility in delivery, whether its hybrid cloud, private cloud, public cloud or an on-premise model. As a technology provider, you must offer all the models and allow the consumer/end user to pick and choose what they desire. There will be specific businesses that will choose one particular model over the other; for example, the banking sector will prefer something more secure," Kadur said.
Cloud will reach newer verticals
Cloud has already arrived in almost all the sectors and 2016 will see this growth take a new direction.
"Though cloud computing adoption varies by verticals, the key elements that drive adoption across are business agility, flexibility, cost saving and faster go to market timelines. We have seen strong adoption of cloud from manufacturing, financial services, health and even governments. Cloud will become a foundation stone for technologies such as mobility, analytics and M2M. With the security concerns getting addressed in the cloud, adoption has increased significantly," said Gupta.
Hybrid cloud: The way to go
While CIOs will contemplate which version of cloud, whether public, private or hybrid will suit their model best, experts say hybrid cloud will be the favourite.
"It is not feasible to move all workloads of an organisation to the cloud because of the complexity of today's environments but the hybrid cloud -- combination of on premises and public cloud -- will lead the cloud industry: a combination of strengths allowing organisations achieve the performance of on-premises solutions yet also the management convenience of the cloud business model. Companies that are starting fresh will adopt cloud or will be forced by investors to adopt 'cloud first' policy," said Dr Papneja.