The current decade is in its mature phase and over the last 8 years, we have seen never-before witnessed data proliferation. More than ever, today, we have a critical mass of data that can lead to fruitful predictions across industries, truly becoming a source of revenue and disruptive innovation.
To keep up with the rapid pace of change, organisations are investing in digital transformation to gain the ability to swiftly adapt and outperform competitors. Dubbed as data thrivers in IDC’s white paper, such organsations have three times greater new customer acquisition and increased profitability than enterprises that are not data-driven. By digitally enhancing operations and offerings, business leaders are able to collect and harness data to gain insights that can help unlock new opportunities.
In 2019, four key tech trends could lend the sparks that enterprises need to accelerate digital transformation and become data thrivers.
Cloud to bolster AI development
Artificial Intelligence (AI) is set to become a norm in the Asia Pacific, with 55 per cent of organisations in the region already implementing or are expanding its this year. Organisations are expected to increasingly deploy cloud-based AI software and service tools in 2019, to ensure that AI applications deliver high performance and scalability, both on and off premises, and support multiple data access protocols and varied new data formats. This also calls for infrastructure supporting AI workloads to be fast, resilient, and automated. While AI will certainly become the next battleground for infrastructure vendors, most development will start in the cloud.
Edge devices will get smarter
The Asia Pacific is expected to house 8.6 billion Internet of Things (IoT) devices by 2020 and become the world’s largest 5G region with 675 million 5G connections by 2025. To take advantage of the resulting data deluge, organisations will need the ability to process data at the edge to quickly gain insights and make real-time decisions. IoT devices and applications will therefore increasingly come with built-in services such as data analysis and data reduction. This will enable them to make better, faster and smarter decisions about what data requires immediate action, what data gets sent home to the core or to the cloud, and even what data can be discarded.
Hybrid, multi-cloud to rise
Hybrid, multi-cloud will be the default IT architecture for most larger organisations while others will choose the simplicity and consistency of a single cloud provider.
By 2024, 90 per cent of the G1000 organizations will mitigate vendor lock-in through multi and hybrid cloud technologies. By using technologies such as containers and data fabric, these organisations will be able to flexibly and easily move workloads across environments while having full control over them.
Invisible data services
Data services will be invisible, and apps no longer need to move since the rise of containers will result in the trend toward abstraction of individual systems and services, it will drive IT architects to design for data and data processing and to build hybrid, multi-cloud data fabrics rather than just data centers.
With the application of predictive technologies and diagnostics, decision-makers will become increasingly reliant on robust yet “invisible” data services that deliver data when and where it’s needed, regardless of where it is stored.
These new capabilities will also automate the brokerage of infrastructure services as dynamic commodities and the shuttling of containers and workloads to and from the most efficient service provider solutions for the job.
With disruption and change being the only constant, it is crucial for organisations to be able to turn data into a strategic asset and flexibly respond to market changes. Enterprises should, therefore, embrace hybrid cloud, containers, and edge computing to gain those capabilities and advance business growth in the digital economy. (Views expressed by the author are personal)
(Anil Valluri is the President, NetApp India & SAARC)