The past 10 years have seen an increasing adoption of cloud, as more and more companies start implementing hybrid and multi-cloud working environments.
For most businesses, this hybrid-cloud stage marks the transition towards the digital. However, this transition isn’t always smooth, as companies have to ensure they comply with their corporate regulations. This is why many of them have chosen to use both private and public servers for their workload. This hybrid infrastructure management seems to work very well, and therefore it has a very high adoption rate among businesses in all industries and sectors.
As one step further from the hybrid cloud, businesses are now implementing multi-cloud solutions that combine cloud services from different providers. According to a Kentik report in 2019, almost 60% of all companies use a mix of Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud and Microsoft Azure across multi-cloud server networks. This approach allows companies to identify and assess the strengths and weaknesses of different providers in a very effective and efficient manner. This helps them find the most reliable providers before committing to long-term services agreements.
Nevertheless, there are still businesses that shy away from using public clouds, hence the increase in popularity of these hybrid cloud solutions. According to FileCloud, half of all organizations have no intention of moving their confidential or critical workloads to public clouds any time soon. Also, a report by Symantec states that about 50% of companies struggle when it comes to offering reliable and effective protection for their workloads. They fear that security solutions may not keep up with the development of cloud working environments.
Security and AI Possibilities
These concerns regarding the security of cloud working environments have created new opportunities for providers to take advantage of. For example, cloud providers offer security capabilities and expertise most companies can never hope to achieve on their own. Security has become one of the key drivers for hybrid-cloud adoption. Reliable cloud-based security solutions have continued to gain traction across industries and areas of activity. Even highly-regulated sectors, government organisations and financial services are switching to hybrid-cloud solutions.
It’s also worth mentioning that cloud-based solutions have allowed companies to acquire AI capabilities without huge investments in equipment and know-how. As AI has become a very important element of innovation and growth, there’s no wonder executives consider its early adoption essential for the success of their companies. The number of executives that consider AI as being “critically important” is expected to grow over the next two years.
Our survey has shown that the majority of AI benefits until now have focused mainly on enhancing services and products and on optimising internal workflow. In the next year, companies will likely make use of AI to manage customer interactions, develop and test new products, personalise their offer, and achieve a higher customisation level in their day-to-day relationships with their clients. This can only lead to higher conversion rates and increased customer satisfaction.
The rise of Internet of Things devices and the increase in portability will likely lead to tremendous growth in edge-computing, as AI will require more and more computing power to operate and manage all these devices. According to Gartner, in 2019 enterprises used private solutions for only 10% of their generated data. Everything else used either cloud or data centres. Experts in the IT industry expect this figure to evolve at a fast pace over the next three years. The growth will result mainly from the development of IoT applications, as they will encompass a wide array of industries such as healthcare, retail, agriculture, manufacturing, energy, logistics, and financial services, and companies specialising in specific areas such as structure-borne noise. Furthermore, this outlook is rather conservative, so we may expect even faster growth, with new cutting-edge technologies taking the lead, sometimes from one year to the next.