In the previous entry in our series, we talked about the prediction of an increase of spending on IT in the enterprise during the new year and where all that money is going. As we discussed, technology is pricey, whether you’re just hiring more bodies to throw at a current project or investing in a new endeavor within your current business model. Computerworld’s survey says that a lot of that money will go to security (50%), but the other half? It’s all new stuff.
In fact, the percentages show that most funding will go to developing new technology, like transitioning to the cloud and business analytics. They’ve broken down the numbers into these major categories:
- 50% security
- 48% cloud computing
- 41% business analytics
- 36% mobile applications
- 35% virtualization
We’ve already talked about how important security will be in IT, and it’s no surprise that cloud computing is a popular entry. At Samanage, we’ve been singing cloud’s praises for a while, so maybe I’m biased since the cloud is a integral aspect to our product. But, there are so many benefits to incorporating cloud capabilities into your enterprise that sometimes it’s shocking that organizations haven’t already jumped on this bandwagon. The ability to access your documents from anywhere, receive automatic updates from offsite servers, collaborate with team members from wherever you are — I could go on and on.
One of the more surprising predictions is how important the Internet of Things (IoT) will be. Last year, interest in this new breed of software was relatively low, but this year it’s set up to become a major game changer in IT. It makes sense when you consider that everything, from your coffee maker to your car, is basically a computer now. Top players are taking notice, particularly when it comes to the idea of a smart home. IBM is using Watson to power its take on IoT, Silicon Valley giants like Google and Amazon are churning out their smart home applications (not to mention Amazon’s AWS suite which offers both cloud and IoT), and even your LED light bulbs will have a higher level of intelligence thanks to Philip’s Hue.
It’s a marvelous time to be alive in IT. Here’s some more numbers from the Computerworld survey:
- Cloud is also going to be big this year as more and more enterprises are taking advantage of the accessibility and newer security options. 29% said that they had already moved some of their applications (with plans to move others) to the cloud.
- The Internet of Things will actually become closer to being a thing: 29% identified IoT as a new area in which they were allocating money, and that same percentage also applies to how many people pointed to this field as the next big thing, up 17 points from last year.
- Cloud and SaaS are predicted to still be “disruptive” in the next three to five years, topping self-service IT at 18% (this is good news for all of us).
- What’s everyone working on? 64% said that they are currently testing and working on virtualization. 44% said they are working on IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS projects.
- Poor wearables. Only 8% said they currently use them, 7% said they are developing for them, and 6% support employee-owned wearables. Time to put away your Apple Watch.
Investing in Innovation
It’s always easy to get excited about shiny new things. As Barney Stinson says: “New is always better.” And, isn’t this why we love being in this field to begin with, to always be on the cutting (and sometimes “bleeding”) edge with the opportuity to play with things as soon as they hit the market?
It’s always a gamble to take on something new. There’s never a guarantee that things will work out in your favor. To reassure your boss (and any bosses out there who might be reading this and dreading having to roll the dice on new technology), we’ve done some homework and come up with a few numbers that might be promising:
- Business Insider predicts that 34 million devices will be IoT ready by 2020, but it certainly won’t be for free, as there will also be a projected $7.1 trillion in revenue according to Fortune.
- As for cloud, the industry is looking green. For small and medium businesses alone, Forbes predicts that the market could grow to $55 billion this year, and that’s just with 37% of small businesses “adapting” to the cloud. By 2020, it could be up to 78%.
- Nasdaq.com reports that Goldman Sachs is estimating spend on cloud infrastructure and platforms to reach $43 billion in 2018.
So, get out there and innovate — just maybe skip the wearables for now.