Saturday, December 31, 2011

Episode 19: If Prof. Trelawney did 2012 cloud predictions, it would be these.

2012 is mere hours away. A new business quarter looms, & Irish cloud companies will be gearing up for the traditional January assault on the market. With the last twelve months behind us, & a new year to look forward to, 2012 is the year that will make or break the cloud in Ireland. As such, I've taken a look ahead at what I believe the next 12 months will hold for the cloud computing market.

1. The continued rise & rise of the enterprise app market
With thriving markets for Apple's iOS devices, Android, Google Apps, SalesForce, & Amazon's App Store already mainstays, 2012 will be the year where AppStores will take off in the enterprise space, providing Cloud services to replace traditionally more expensive pieces of software. This will come from the growing PAAS space, where developers will build out on these platforms. If Google Apps is anything to go by, there will be a big push in this space for enterprise from the big five.

2. PAAS growth
With AppStores taking off, PAAS players will be rubbing their hands gleefully. Long gone are the days of issues over OpenSource VS Microsoft. The real power play is going to be in who provides the better incentives for developers financially. Sure, Google's Android market has more Apps than Apple's, but Apple makes a better payout to developers, & more often. It is also widely acknowledged for having better earning potential for developers. People in the PAAS area turning to the enterprise App market will be aware that having a great App is not enough, enticing people to use your market & make it worth their while will be the key.

3. More mobile & tablet computing
We're starting to see the death of even netbooks with Dell winding their offerings down, & the real focus is on the mobile & tablet computing side of things. With these access points being so focal in the consumer market, it is only natural that adoption in the enterprise area will follow, which will go hand-in-hand with an explosion in the enterprise app market in 2012. The frantic increase in the lawsuits over IP in the tablet/mobile computing space right now across the globe should tell you everything. For the big players, we're at the forefront of the latest technology warfront. Control of the battlefield is essential to how platforms, app stores, developers & the future of the technologies in the enterprise space is at stake.

4. Less Private Cloud discussions
As far as I'm concerned, the debate over private cloud is well & truly over. Private cloud doesn't exist. Call it what it is; virtualised consolidation of private environments. This contentious area of the cloud has been debated ad-infinitim, & has been murked by vendors who were silling these kind of solutions against what are accepted cloud solutions as a means to show a value against what are often cheaper competitive solutions. Private cloud in 2012 will become part of the 'do you remember when' types of discussions, as opposed to constructive parts of discussions about where the cloud goes from 2012.

5. More consumer cloud solutions
Between Google & Amazon's music lockers, iTunes, iCloud, & Microsoft recently announcing they were seeking to bring on more cloud services for their mobile OS users, & Nintendo sneaking an App store under the radar, things are moving at a freight train pace for consumers. Digital Television is finally coming into the fore across Europe, so expect an explosion of cloud-based consumer services for the consumer, including TV-related ones, especially following the US court ruling that TV/movie content uploaded into cloud lockers by consumers is not a violation of copyright law. With Apple rumoured to be releasing a range of televisions in their own unimitable style this year, & With SOPA coming under increasing pressure publically, consumer cloud will continue to be the canary down the mine for Cloud services, which will eventually cross over into the Enterprise.