We all know that cloud is not going away. Although in the past it may not have dominated the workplace, cloud has now been accepted by businesses and is a key tool for many IT departments. According to Gartner, cloud will underpin key tech trends in 2015 and has the potential to have significant impact on businesses for years to come. But what does this mean? And what is next? Of course big data, the Internet of Things and data analytics will continue to shape how we use it. But at Fujitsu, we see three key trends that will really come into play next year for cloud.
1. Platform-as-a-service (PaaS) will diversify and become the norm
In 2015 we will see the number of platforms built for different services increase dramatically. PaaS is a trend that continues to mature and in 2015 we will see many more application specific platforms emerging for technologies, such as big data and Internet of Things. This evolution of cloud platforms will lead to more specific capabilities dependant on the application it serves and will help businesses diversify and open up new opportunities for growth and innovation.
2. Cloud will drive digital business growth
As a result of this diversification of PaaS, cloud will become a major driver for digital business growth. With a recovering economy, businesses are no longer cost cutting and are starting to invest in innovation again. With cloud services becoming a critical process more companies have the opportunity to capitalise on the platforms they have already and package them up as products to be sold on. By creating PaaS that bring functionality not only to their own work, but others too, organisations can take a huge leap forward in transforming themselves into a fully digital business.
A great example of taking a pre-existing, in-house process and packaging it as a service to sell to other companies is I HEART Studios. The company, which photographs fashion goods for brands and retailers, used the Fujitsu RunMyProcess PaaS to turn its image retouching service into a stand-alone digital service. By using PaaS, the company is able to provide that specific process with other companies’ workflow based applications, easily integrating with their systems and thus creating a new arm of business revenue for I Heart Studios.
3. Hybrid IT comes to fruition
Finally, hybrid IT will have a huge influence on cloud in 2015. Hybrid IT has been growing in the last few years with early adopters managing resources both in-house and off premise through external vendors. This move will accelerate and over the next year and hybrid IT will be something that every business has. With this move the pace of management of IT systems will increase even more which will lead to significant changes in the way businesses organise their operational processes for IT. While this may seem a daunting prospect to IT managers putting cloud at the heart of operations will lead to a first-class hybrid IT offering.
Cloud will continue to be a disruptive force in 2015, transforming the way organisations and people work. The landscape is constantly changing and in 2015 this will be no different. We will see the diversification of platforms change how businesses innovate within the cloud, digital transformation become the norm and hybrid IT become mainstream for all. Businesses need to be ready for this fast-paced change to ensure they capitalise on the many benefits of becoming a digital-first company.
About the author
Andrew Brabban is Vice President, Head of Initiatives Programs, Global Delivery at Fujitsu and leads a globally distributed team responsible for driving programs aligned to key initiatives such a cloud, big data, and the Internet of Things. He has worked at Fujitsu for 18 years and previous posts included Cloud Director for Fujitsu UK and Ireland, CTO of Applications Division and Head of SaaS at Fujitsu Services.