We’ve come a long way since Amazon Web Service’s first cloud computing wave in 2006 and AWS turnover is now at $14 billion with Google, Microsoft and IBM all snapping at their heels. Amazon Web Services still remain in the lead but Azure has increased rapidly whilst AWS has stagnated somewhat, aside from the public cloud, and Google is taking up the rear but growing rapidly.
CIOs have realised that there is no need for huge IT departments or their own data centres which can be costly, complicated and slow when they can keep up with the latest technology through Cloud based services instead and take advantage of economies of scale.
We’re now starting to see new developments like speciality clouds and are living in the second cloud wave for public, private and hybrid cloud services. According to Forrester, 38% of enterprise level businesses are now building private clouds (although only Azure has significant growth), 32% are buying public clouds and 30% are still on the cusp of implementing cloud. 59% are adopting hybrid cloud services because they need to scale their services better to suit their customer’s needs and hybrid cloud is growing rapidly with users typically running applications in multiple clouds (1.8 public clouds and 2.3 private clouds), whereas private cloud is starting to fall.
Expertise in running cloud services is growing and where companies struggled previously to get a hold on security concerns and managing costs it is becoming less of a challenge now. There has been a lot of Cloud spending waste (30-45% according to Rightscale) and optimising costs has become a key priority for cloud users. There has been a move towards central IT teams taking a broader view of their role in cloud where they select public and private clouds and which apps to move to cloud, although views between central IT and the business units they support often conflict.
If you work in DevOps you are probably well aware of how popular Docker has got over the last year, taking the lead from Chef and Puppet with Kubernetes adoption surging forward to maybe join them shortly. It seems like the last few years have been all about configuration management tools, containers and schedulers and if you have experience in these areas you’ve definitely chosen the right area to focus on.
In the development or consultant area as a whole where your focus is likely to be on SAAS (software as a service) or leveraging IAAS or PAAS for developing customer solutions, there are some key trends emerging currently. Where developers have had to set up the server and infrastructure and install the tools to maintain them, there will be more of a focus on totally developing the code via cloud tools with the database as a service, Java as a managed service and with DevOps being key in ensuring agile delivery. Developers may need to reskill on the new cloud platforms to be able to develop applications in their entirety and an understanding of iOT, AI, deep learning, mobile, AR and VR will stand you in good stead for the future as they become standard in building applications and as the world of robotics gathers momentum