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Megaport: 2021 cloud predictions

Misha Cetrone, VP Cloud Product, Megaport details his predictions for the cloud industry in 2021

|Dec 27|magazine7 min read

Cloud-to-Cloud Connections Will Spur Multicloud Supernova 

It’s no surprise, the shift to the cloud will continue at full speed, fueled by remote work. A recent Gartner survey, for example, indicates that almost 70% of organizations using cloud services today plan to increase their cloud spending in the wake of the disruption caused by COVID-19. While the hyperscalers will continue to dominate, we’ll also see a growing field of specialized cloud providers focused on the best-of-breed approach that allows organizations to save money and get the best performance. These niche services cover solutions such as database technologies, high performance computing, and VMware offerings. On top of this, vastly easier cloud-to-cloud connectivity – something that has traditionally been very complicated – will open up new opportunities to mix and match clouds, allowing IT organizations to maximize performance while gaining more control over their cloud spend. This will trigger rapid expansion of multicloud environments, particularly among smaller and mid-sized organizations that previously lacked the internal technical resources to make cloud services interoperate effectively. 

The Edge Gets Edgier 

Remote work is forcing big changes across IT – that holds true to networking and cloud strategies as well. With employees working from anywhere, cloud providers next year will put more resources at the edge in tier 2 and tier 3 markets, positioning data and SaaS applications closer to users. This combined with wider NFV deployment, simpler private line provisioning and end-to-end automation will provide further relief to IT teams working to deliver secure, reliable and predictable service to more widely dispersed users. 

Rethinking Data Center Connectivity 

While the pandemic has accelerated the shift to the cloud, a lot of essential enterprise applications still live in data centers and can’t easily be migrated to the cloud. Now more than ever, we are living in a world where remote work at scale has become the norm with organizations requiring access to their corporate network and the ability to enable remote desktop access. In the coming year, IT teams will seek flexible on demand data center connectivity between sites and cloud providers to solve for this shift in remote working. Think of this as agile networking where a company can quickly enable private interconnections to services based on their day to day operations, even during unforseen times such as a pandemic. This greatly solves a company’s ability to adopt virtualized desktops for remote users of both corporate and cloud apps in a secure, scalable, pay as you go model. 

Gartner forecasts that spending on cloud services will continue the massive recent surge in 2021, growing another 18.4% to $304.9 billion, up from $257.5 billion in 2020. As organizations strive to fully capitalize on these new investments and best empower employees to maximize productivity, we’ll see them increasingly focused on optimizing their cloud-to-cloud connectivity, expanding their edge, reducing their reliance on public internet, and instead increasing their use of flexible direct, private connections.

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