Twelve IT trends to look out for in 2015

19 January 2015 | By David Baird

With the Holiday Season now firmly behind us, 2015 has started with a bang and expectations are that the year will be an interesting one in terms of IT.

Here at Glasshouse, we like to use this time at the start of the year to review what has taken place in the previous year, and make a few predictions about what we believe will be the major IT trends for the coming year. We’ll be back to review this at the end of the year to see how the year panned out.

Our twelve predictions for the IT trends throughout 2015:

1. Wearable Devices remain in Hype Phase

With Apple due to release the Apple Watch this year, 2015 will be touted as the year of the Wearable Device, although we expect that this will largely remain in the Hype phase. Whilst earlier adopters will rush out to acquire the devices, until the use / benefits of wearable devices have been proven, mainstream adoption of the technology will not be accepted by the general population.

2. Mobile Platforms Outpace Desktop Platforms

The consumption and use of Mobile Platforms will outpace Desktop Platforms, with the majority of new applications being developed primarily for consumption on mobile devices. Already established as the leading method of application delivery in developing markets, Mobile Platforms will become the accepted norm in 2015 in established markets, with businesses looking at the use of Mobile as replacement for Desktop fleets as hardware refresh cycles are undertaken.

3. Internet of Things not yet Mainstream

Whilst 2014 saw the emergence of the Internet of Things (IoT), 2015 may see IoT become a reality for some markets, but will not become mainstream. Much of the hype surrounding IoT will continue in the consumer electronics space, with the widespread adoption of IPv6 not yet taking place and consumers struggling to accept the need for all of their devices to be connected.

4. 3D Printing no longer just for enthusiasts

The uptake of 3D printers will continue throughout 2015, with a tipping point for mainstream acceptance probable by 2018. Consumer models still at home enthusiast level in the last year, will improve and mature, as will commercial adoption of the technology which is already taking place in the biomedical and industrial sectors.

5. Big Data Analytics

An increase in the volume of data generated by social media and business metadata collection will result in an increased demand for the maturation of Big Data Analytics. The capture of metadata is anticipated to increase throughout 2015, with the Australian government already proposing that Internet Service Providers (ISPs) submit costings for the retention of metadata for a period of up to 3 years.

Demand for staff skilled in the role of Data Scientists, especially in the areas of analysis, graphical representation and data management is expected to grow as businesses struggle to define methodologies and practices for analysing the ever increasing volumes of data.

6. Hybrid and Public Cloud Adoption Continues to Evolve

The use of Hybrid and Public Clouds will continue to gain acceptance as businesses look for ways to provide IT services at scale, whilst only paying for those resources that they actually need. Data sovereignty issues within the Public Cloud will favour the adoption of the Hybrid Cloud model, although 2015 is likely to see a collective understanding of how data sovereignty issues will be addressed.

7. Drive for Greater Efficiencies and Cost Savings

IT programmes are likely to remain focused on the continuation of cost savings initiatives throughout 2015 as businesses aim to further reduce the cost of IT, especially in those areas providing maintenance of existing services. Cost savings are likely to be reinvested with increased funding of initiatives aimed at the migration of legacy Windows 2003 services and improving IT security.

Procurement as an enabler of cost savings will become more mainstream with organisations looking to manage complex supplier relationships and standardise on the vendors they acquire services from. Key to this will be the collaboration and possible merging of the CIO and senior procurement roles.

8. Open Source Continues to Gain Ground

After a rocky 2014 when Open Source software saw a number of major security flaws in mature offerings (e.g. Bash, OpenSSL), we are predicting that additional validation and quality controls will be brought to the Open Source movement, resulting in an increase in the adoption of Open Source technologies through 2015.

Key developers of proprietary software including Microsoft have already begun migrating their next generation code repositories to the likes of GitHub, giving credence to the use of Open Source for mainstream software development.

9. Software Defined Infrastructure and Apps

Whilst Software Defined Networking (SDN) is now generally considered to be a relatively mature technology, 2015 will see an increase in maturity of the Software Defined Datacentre and Application space. Application Containerisation using methodologies such as Docker will become more prevalent, with secure administration and management features becoming available to fulfil the current shortcomings of these systems.

10. More automation of Datacentre Operations

Improvements to datacentre orchestration tools will lead to an increase in the use of automation within the datacentre, at the possible expense of those employees currently performing more basic tasks within the Data Centre environment.

Standards will continue to evolve for the automation methodologies with a degree of API standardisation and consolidation.

11. Changes to IT Security Model

Major intrusions to the IT systems of Home Depot, Target, Apple, and Sony have shown that traditional security models used to protect IT systems have their shortcomings, and that a new approach to IT security is required.

Businesses will begin to implement IT security methodologies that offer differing levels of trust and authentication, such that the key business data is more highly protected than that used by the general user base. Whilst significant buy in at the CxO level will be required to achieve this, increasing protection of key assets provides the balance between usability and security of the environment.

12. Erosion of Privacy

Users will continue to exchange privacy for functionality, resulting in a general erosion of privacy and what is perceived to be private information. Social media experiments will continue to push the boundaries of what is acceptable in terms of this exchange.  Whilst a backlash to this may eventuate, we are expecting the general trend to continue for the majority of 2015.

2015 will also see the continuation of government initiatives to limit the use of encryption and secure communications, in response to the perceived threats of terrorism. Early in 2015, we are already seeing the UK announce such initiatives and countries such as Spain detaining citizens for using encryption.

For more information or to discuss this further, feel free to contact the GlassHouse Technologies team.

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