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Ormuco 2018 Predictions: Cloud Prometheus - Fire Comes Down From the Hyperscale Mountain

VMblog Predictions 2018

Industry executives and experts share their predictions for 2018.  Read them in this 10th annual series exclusive.

Contributed by Orlando Bayter, Founder and CEO, Ormuco

Cloud Prometheus: Fire Comes Down From the Hyperscale Mountain

If you were to take a snapshot of the cloud landscape today, you would see that enterprise adoption of cloud platforms is accelerating. In the US, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Cloud Platform (GCP), and Microsoft Azure dominate the public cloud market and are commonly referred to as "The Big Three." Beyond the US, particularly in China and other APAC countries, public cloud services are growing exponentially, faster than in the US, in fact. China's Alibaba, for instance, now runs the world's second largest public cloud.

Interestingly enough, however, public cloud isn't the whole picture. Private cloud adoption is also on the rise, growing at rates comparable to or in excess of public cloud adoption. This is particularly the case as enterprises address security and regulatory needs and become more sophisticated in managing workloads for performance and cost control.

That same snapshot of today's cloud landscape would also be infused with several hot spots. These emerging technologies, trends and critical issues-such as IoT, telecom network functions virtualization (NFV), and security, to name a few-are disrupting the information technology industry in general and the cloud computing industry in particular.

Given these drivers, here are three ways the industry will be transformed in 2018:

1. Applications healing, repairing and troubleshooting will be enhanced by artificial intelligence (AI), and this will reduce significantly the operational workload on system administrators.

IT companies today are keenly focused on automation and scalability of applications, driven by the need to reduce time-to-market and rapidly scale services to ultimately elevate the customer or end-user experience. Therein lies the attraction of cloud. However, the proliferation of applications on cloud platforms has created a challenge for system administrators-monitoring, maintaining and repairing this burgeoning portfolio of applications.

And consider for a moment what is coming down the pike: a Cretacious bloom of connected devices and therefore the number of IoT applications will soon swell, connecting billions of devices. There simply aren't enough system administrators in the world to handle that workload in a timely way.

This challenge will be addressed with artificial intelligence (AI). AI will be used within cloud ops toolsets not only to intelligently supervise applications using log file data to trigger reparations, but also to deliver unsupervised "self-learning" in which the system will seek out, consider, and "thoughtfully" apply solutions to hardware and software issues.

2. Cloud applications will not be limited to cloud native.

Cloud computing has been rapidly adopted by organizations that were born in the cloud era. That's because the applications built by these cloud-era companies are created to run in cloud environments; in other words, the applications are cloud native.

However, for older enterprises who made deep IT investments prior to the cloud era, the transition to cloud computing has been a much, much slower process. That's because most of these companies' applications were built to run in legacy, non-cloud datacenter environments; they were not made to run in the cloud. Transitioning these applications and legacy workloads to the cloud has involved the technical equivalent of jury-rigging-if not the complete rewrite-of applications. This is about to change.

Soon enterprises will be able to bring their traditional workloads to the cloud, because cloud platform vendors are responding to the call for cloud behavior and features inside the enterprise datacenter that support this use case. Demand is being driven primarily by enterprises that have data sovereignty and corporate sovereignty requirements that hyperscale (public) cloud providers are not yet interested in meeting. Even within the datacenter, the solution of the recent past has been to "forklift" legacy applications on top of middleware running on VMware, which is expensive and requires a host of performance compromises.

But, thanks to the innovations being brought forth by forward-thinking cloud platform software vendors, we will soon have simplified approaches to re-architecting legacy workloads so that they can take advantage of both data sovereignty and cloud, and do it without the performance compromises and costs that classic forklifting involves.

3. There will be consolidation of managed service providers (MSPs), and this will increase cloud platform software adoption.

IDC predicts that the number of data centers around the world will peak this year at 8.6 million and then start to steadily decrease. IDC believes this contraction will be due to organizations opting to use service provider data centers rather than manage their own infrastructure.

But there is another trend at work here, driven by some savvy MSPs who recognize their need for an exit strategy. Many of these MSPs know that their data center technology is aging out and a serious investment in transformation must be made if their data center operations are going to survive.

As the threat of the hyperscalers bears down upon these older, low-end MSPs, some will opt to consolidate rather than transform, building up scale to create something to sell. Buyers (likely private equity firms) will find this option attractive, because, in the midst of growing demand for data center capacity, they will be able to purchase a solid stockpile of assets and remodel them by "copying and pasting" new technology blueprints-and using the innovative cloud platforms described above-across all their data centers, enjoying compelling economies of scale.

In Greek mythology, the Titan Prometheus steals fire from the gods and shares it with humanity, enabling the progress of civilization. In 2018, we'll see why cloud platform software vendors with a fully turnkey stack-on and off premises-could be considered the Prometheus of our decade: they will bring cloud capabilities down from the hyperscale mountain, enabling the progress of enterprises large and small throughout the world. 


About the Author

Orlando Bayter 

Orlando Bayter is the founder and CEO of Ormuco, a Montreal-based cloud software platform provider. A serial entrepreneur since the age of 14, he has built several successful startups in the telecommunications and IT space, serving enterprise, government, and service provider markets.

Published Tuesday, December 26, 2017 7:21 AM by David Marshall
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