In the next five years, cloud computing will become firmly established as a trusted and legitimate Information Technology (IT) delivery model. Further, in alignment with analyst reports and my conversations with customers, I predict that between 20-30% of the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) market will consist of private, public cloud services. In order for the cloud market to grow at 40% CAGR, the issues of trust and control will need to be addressed. This will be a top priority for cloud providers offering enterprise-class IT services.
By 2016, enterprise-class services will have matured to an industry-accepted set of service-level profiles that consist of sophisticated service level objectives that meet the stringent requirements of the future cloud service consumer. As part of this evolution, we will see infrastructure specialists who provide sovereign data center facilities for hire to cloud providers. Such resources will allow them to meet the regulatory requirements of sovereign industry and government bodies such as the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS).
We are already starting to see the emergence of a differentiated cloud market place. For example, there are large full service providers that offer a complete suite of services spanning public, virtual-private and hybrid cloud delivery models. Savvis is one such full service provider. At the other end of the spectrum we have collaboration applications, like Cisco WebEx, in the cloud which focus on offering Web-based video conference services. Cisco WebEx, like most specialized cloud services, are hosted on dedicated infrastructure and offered as a public service. These specialized services are often sold as white label services to the full-service cloud providers.
What are the implications of these predictions? For business users it means they will not need to think about the limitations and boundaries of IT but rather they will be empowered to innovate in their job roles or lives. For IT organizations, it means that they no longer need to focus on baseline services that would have become commoditized and abstracted so they can use their skills and expertise to innovate and add value to the business.
Bernie Trudel is Cisco Asia Pacific Cloud Chief Technology Officer