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Red Kubes 2024 Predictions: Consolidation, Convergence, and Developer-Focused Solutions Will Define the Kubernetes Ecosystem in 2024


Industry executives and experts share their predictions for 2024.  Read them in this 16th annual series exclusive.

Consolidation, Convergence, and Developer-Focused Solutions Will Define the Kubernetes Ecosystem in 2024

By Rouven Besters, CEO of Red Kubes

2024 will be the year that the prevailing optimism about the ability to engineer and maintain container & Kubernetes platforms will give way to a more pragmatic realism. This shift can be attributed to the fact that companies are increasingly becoming aware of the complexity of building and managing these platforms. Broadly speaking, from an ecosystem perspective, it is reasonable to expect consolidation and convergence in the coming year. Let's see how.

Consolidation and Convergence

There is also a growing need for standards in the Kubernetes ecosystem- something that's essential not only for scaling rapidly but also for ensuring that different Kubernetes deployments can be integrated with each other. This, in turn, will drive adoption of readily consumable solutions. We will see consolidations take shape as tech companies delivering broad platforms acquire specialized point solutions. We will also witness the rise of platforms dedicated to enhancing Developer Experience through automation and user-friendly interfaces, abstracting away the underlying complexities.

Several Kubernetes cluster management solution providers today find themselves challenged in a highly competitive and possibly saturated market, prompting them to discontinue actively selling such solutions anymore. This is a testament to the consolidation of the Kubernetes layer- that is becoming a (complex) commodity now, but everything above is uncharted territory.

Cost Control and Ready-to-run Platforms

In the light of the current economic climate and an increased emphasis on cost control, companies will recognize the disproportionality between engineering efforts and business outcomes. This will spark conversations about expediting the realization of business objectives, subsequently fueling the demand for ready-to-run application platforms. Only this week, I had a conversation with a growing software company that had just made the move to Cloud. They recognized that managing Cloud, Kubernetes, and a developer abstraction would just be a bridge too far and would distract them from the mission of building competitive software. Hiring 4-8 people to build and maintain a platform to deploy and run software on, is not a financially viable investment when you employ less than 200 employees.  As for cost control measures, there will be a rise in FinOps implementations specifically tailored for Kubernetes. At the same time, techniques will be implemented to optimize cluster and container density, embracing approaches such as spot instances, ephemeral computing and capacity management automation.

The rise of Function-as-a-Service and Developer-Friendliness

We expect an increase in the adoption of Function-as-a-Service to enhance the scalability of monolithic architectures. While Kubernetes platforms are on the path to greater developer-friendliness, application-centric strategies and refining deployment options, there persists an opportunity for increased standardization in application lifecycle management. As standardization gains momentum, platform engineering and DevOps teams are likely to reduce in size, allowing application teams to expand. The growing application teams may, however, require additional expertise to develop operators that guarantee seamless application upgrades.

There will be an increase in efforts to make the developer experience on Kubernetes more effortless. On the other hand, dedicating the skills and time to provide this kind of experience internally ought to become a resource-intensive endeavor, prompting companies to explore more off-the-shelf solutions. They will start to realize that they don't need a snowflake platform because their requirements are not so unique afterall. In essence, every company shares the same goal: deliver features at a higher pace for less money. The goal of platform engineering is to alleviate the cognitive load on developers, enabling faster delivery. However, if platform engineering in itself fails to deliver on time, developers may seek alternative paths, thereby exacerbating cognitive strain and casting a shadow over the process.



Rouven Besters, CEO of Red Kubes

Rouven Besters 

Rouven is a seasoned business leader with a proven track record of driving growth and innovation. He brings extensive experience in international sales, management, DevOps, customer experience, cloud computing, cloud-native applications, e-commerce, and online marketing, having held key positions at companies such as VMware Tanzu, Pivotal, M4N, and Dell. Prior to joining Red Kubes, Rouven led the Northern Europe teams at VMware Tanzu, where he was responsible for the development and execution of go-to-market strategy. Under his leadership, his organisation has been instrumental in helping major banks, insurers, and government institutions accelerate their transition to the cloud and modernise their application stacks. As the CEO of Red Kubes since December 2022, Rouven is responsible for the continued growth of the company.

Published Thursday, November 30, 2023 7:35 AM by David Marshall
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