Cloud and SDN seen surging in 2014

Melissa Chua
Asia Cloud Forum
It is the year 2014 and the cloud has laid claim to being the buzzword for the IT industry for a few years and counting. Mobile device usage for both business and consumer use has paved the way for innovation in the cloud space and network technologies have similarly evolved to support the cloud.
 
High bandwidth end-user network connections, HTTP-based protocols and powerful browsers have contributed to the feasibility of cloud services, says CTO and VP of services, APJ, at Akamai Technologies Alex Caro. "High bandwidth connections coupled with the variety of devices that can take advantage of these connections results in a dramatic increase in demand for applications that do not have to be executed locally."
 
While concerns about security and reliability remain, the cloud space looks set to observe a magnitude of change this year, particularly with the emergence of software defined networking (SDN) and the potential this budding technology holds, say cloud vendors.
 
"2014 will be the year of SDN," says Taylor Man, EVP of NTT Communications' cloud business division, who reckons SDN will attain maturity as companies look to succeed in competitive global markets.
 
"Networks are the foundations of the cloud and they need to evolve to meet scalability and agility demands; otherwise, they become bottlenecks that hinder cloud development. SDN has a big future as it decouples the data and control planes. This paves the way for benefits in the form of high scalability, better integration and easier deployment of network resources."
 
On SDN's camp is Pacnet's president for Managed Services Jim Fagan, who reckons the advent of SDN will rapidly change the way the network complements cloud services. "2014 will see SDN move into more enterprise class network services as the technology evolves and traditional network equipment companies embrace the model," says Fagan, adding network functions virtualization solutions will continue to evolve and allow network providers deliver a diverse array of managed network products to customers from a cloud delivery platform.
 

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