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Grading the Internet’s 2014 Tech Predictions

The time is here for bloggers across the internet to make their tech predictions for 2014 and beyond (we have made some ourselves around storage and cloud). In this post, a couple of our authors have weighed in to grade predictions made by others across the web.

Prioritizing Management Tool Consolidation vs. New Acquisitions

Enterprise customers will want to invest in new tools only when necessary. They should look for solutions that can address several of their needs so that they do not have to acquire multiple tools and integrate them. The ability to cover multiple areas of management (performance, configuration and availability) to support multiple technologies (e.g., application tiers) and to operate across multiple platforms (Unix, Windows, virtual) will be important criteria for enterprises to assess what management tools will work for them.  (eweek)

Agree – I have been saying this for a while.  If you want a new tool, get rid of 5 and consolidate and use what you have now or get one that really works. (Randy Becker)


Bigger big data spending

IDC predicts spending of more than $14 billion on big data technologies and services or 30% growth year-over-year, “as demand for big data analytics skills continues to outstrip supply.” The cloud will play a bigger role with IDC predicting a race to develop cloud-based platforms capable of streaming data in real time. There will be increased use by enterprises of externally-sourced data and applications and “data brokers will proliferate.” IDC predicts explosive growth in big data analytics services, with the number of providers to triple in three years. 2014 spending on these services will exceed $4.5 billion, growing by 21%. (Forbes)

Absolutely agree with this.  Companies of all sizes are constantly looking to garner more intelligence from the data they have.  Even here at GreenPages we have our own big data issues and will continue to invest in these solutions to solve our own internal business needs. (Chris Ward)


Enterprises Will Shift From Silo to Collaborative Management

 In 2014, IT organizations will continue to feel increased pressure from their lines of business. Collaborative management will be a key theme, and organizations will be looking to provide a greater degree of performance visibility across their individual silo tiers to the help desk, so it is easier and faster to troubleshoot problems and identify the tier that is responsible for a problem. (eweek)

Agree – cross domain technology experts are key!  (Randy Becker)


New IT Will Create New Opportunities

Mobility, bring-your-own device (BYOD) and virtual desktops will all continue to gain a foothold in the enterprise. The success of these new technologies will be closely tied to the performance that users can experience when using these technologies. Performance management will grow in importance in these areas, providing scope for innovation and new solutions in the areas of mobility management, VDI management and so on. (eweek)

Disagree – This is backwards. The business is driving change and accountability.  It is not IT that creates new opportunities – it is the business demanding apps that work and perform for the people using them. (Randy Becker)


Here comes the Internet of Things

By 2020, the Internet of Things will generate 30 billion autonomously connected end points and $8.9 trillion in revenues. IDC predicts that in 2014 we will see new partnerships among IT vendors, service providers, and semiconductor vendors that will address this market. Again, China will be a key player:  The average Chinese home in 2030 will have 40–50 intelligent devices/sensors, generating 200TB of data annually. (Forbes)

Totally agree with this one.  Everything and everybody is eventually going to be connected.  I wish I were building a new home right now because there are so many cool things you can do by having numerous household items connected.  I also love it because I know that in 10 years when my daughter turns 16 that I’ll no doubt know in real-time where she is and what she is doing.  However, I doubt she’ll appreciate the ‘coolness’ of that.  Although very cool, this concept does introduce some very real challenges around management of all of these devices.  Think about 30 billion devices connected to the net….  We might actually have to start learning about IPv6 soon… (Chris Ward)


Cloud service providers will increasingly drive the IT market

As cloud-dedicated datacenters grow in number and importance, the market for server, storage, and networking components “will increasingly be driven by cloud service providers, who have traditionally favored highly componentized and commoditized designs.” The incumbent IT hardware vendors will be forced to adopt a “cloud-first” strategy, IDC predicts. 25–30% of server shipments will go to datacenters managed by service providers, growing to 43% by 2017. (Forbes)

Not sure I agree with this one for 2014 but I do agree with it in the longer term.  As more and more applications/systems get migrated to public cloud providers, that means less and less hardware/software purchased directly from end user customers and thus more consolidation at the cloud providers.  This could be a catch 22 for a lot of the traditional IT vendors like HP and Dell.  When’s the last time you walked into an Amazon or Google datacenter and saw racks and racks of HP or Dell gear?  Probably not too recently as these providers tend to ‘roll their own’ from a hardware perspective.  One thing is for sure…this will get very interesting over the next 24 to 36 months… (Chris Ward)


End-User Experience Will Determine Success

Businesses will expect IT to find problems before their users do, pinpoint the root cause of the problem and solve the problem as early as possible. IT organizations will seek solutions that will allow them to provide great user experience and productivity. (eweek)

Agree – 100% on this one. Need a good POC and Pilot that is well managed with clear goals and objectives. (Randy Becker)


Amazon (and possibly Google) to take on traditional IT suppliers

Amazon Web Services’ “avalanche of platform-as-a-service offerings for developers and higher value services for businesses” will force traditional IT suppliers to “urgently reconfigure themselves.” Google, IDC predicts, will join in the fight, as it realizes “it is at risk of being boxed out of a market where it should be vying for leadership.” (Forbes)

I agree with this one to an extent.  Amazon has certainly captured a good share of the market in two categories, developers and large scale-out applications and I see them continuing to have dominance in these 2 spaces.  However, anyone who thinks that customers are forklift moving traditional production business applications from the datacenter to the public cloud/Amazon should really get out in the field and talk to CIOs and IT admins as this simply isn’t happening.  I’ve had numerous conversations with our own customers around this topic, and when you do the math it just doesn’t make sense in most cases – assuming the customer has an existing investment in hardware/software and some form of datacenter to house it.  That said, where I have seen an uptake of Amazon and other public cloud providers is from startups or companies that are being spun out of a larger parent. Bottom line, Amazon and others will absolutely compete with traditional IT suppliers, just not in a ubiquitous manner. (Chris Ward)


The digitization of all industries

By 2018, 1/3 of share leaders in virtually all industries will be “Amazoned” by new and incumbent players. “A key to competing in these disrupted and reinvented industries,” IDC says, “will be to create industry-focused innovation platforms (like GE’s Predix) that attract and enable large communities of innovators – dozens to hundreds will emerge in the next several years.” Concomitant with this digitization of everything trend, “the IT buyer profile continues to shift to business executives. In 2014, and through 2017, IT spending by groups outside of IT departments will grow at more than 6% per year.” (Forbes)

I would have to agree with this one as well.  The underlying message here is that IT spending decisions continue to shift away from IT and into the hands of the business.  I have seen this happening more and more over the past couple of years and can’t help but believe it will continue in that direction at a rapid pace. (Chris Ward)

What do you think about these predictions? What about Chris and Randy’s take on them?

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