Saturday, 19 January 2013 04:23

Data the new ‘cloud computing oil’ in year of rapid growth

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This year is expected to bring continuing rapid growth in cloud computing with a prediction by one major industry analyst firm that over the next 12-months cloud computing promises to tackles two hitherto irreconcilable IT challenges - the need to reduce costs and the need to boost innovation.

In its latest report on trends in the cloud market, Ovum  looks at cloud computing from the point of view of IT service providers, with Senior Analyst, Laurent Lachal, commenting  that it takes a lot of effort from vendors and enterprises to actually make cloud computing work, and that they will “succeed in making it work in 2013, both on their own and as part of increasingly complex ecosystems.”

Indeed, according to Ovum cloud computing in all its guises (public, private, and hybrid) is building momentum, evolving fast and becoming increasingly “enterprise-grade”. Yet, it is early days for vendors and enterprises, Lachal says.

“Cloud computing has barely reached the adolescence phase and it will take at least another five years for cloud computing to mature into adulthood.

“2013 will also see the emergence of cloud computing ecosystem. Public clouds are increasingly approached not only as technology delivery platforms but also as “ecosystem hubs” for cloud service providers and consumers.

“They offer a new way to accelerate participation in the rapidly evolving social networking and mobile solution ecosystems of the Internet age. Some industry sectors are benefiting from the ‘data centre as a hub’, an increasingly cloud computing-centric ecosystem of partners that assembles in a key location or data centre such as around financial exchanges, web and online services, or media content.”

Describing data as the “new cloud computing oil in 2013,” Lachal observes that cloud computing services, and the (social, mobile) applications that cloud platforms underpin, generate a lot of data, which in turn requires cloud services and applications to make sense of it.

Lachal says his trend connects with and fuels other industry trends such as the Internet of things (machine-to-machine communication and data processing, cloud computing-based smart cities, TVs or cars projects), open government data, consumerisation of IT (with a variety of cross-device content centric public clouds, such as the one provided by Apple), and, last but not least, Big Data.

According to Ovum, the market’s attention, under the Big Data banner, is currently mostly focused on technology issues, but from 2013 onward from a cloud computing perspective there will be growing interest in the cultural shift required by vendors and enterprises to turn data into a resource to manage and monetise, starting with data abstraction (from underlying IT systems), sharing (within and outside the enterprise), and valuation (via a model from companies such as Accenture).

“Some vendors played the cloud data card early, but the cloud data production, brokerage, and consumption ecosystem is still in the making and will continue to evolve over the next five years,” Lachal concludes.


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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham - retired and is a "volunteer" writer for iTWire. He is a veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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