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December 23, 2016updated 20 Jan 2017 3:09pm

2017 cloud predictions: Hear what Microsoft, Salesforce, VMware & more see for the future of cloud

Some of the leading players in the industry have their say on what 2017 will bring for cloud computing.

By James Nunns

Computer Business Review is here to help you ring in the new year with some predictions from experts in the industry. 

The cloud industry showed no signs of slowing down in 2016 as the leading players continued to innovate at a rapid pace. 

Will 2017 bring more of the same? Here’s what the experts have to say. 


Multi-cloud on the rise in 2017
Kaushik Balasubramanian, Sr. Director of VMware practice, Rackspace. 

“Just as the combination of public and private clouds is here to stay, major cloud providers like Rackspace, VMware and Microsoft are now enabling the use of multiple cloud vendors to work in tandem across different cloud deployments — a trend we call “multi-cloud,” and one I see growing in 2017.

“Different clouds serve different needs for different businesses, and we’re seeing that most enterprises will consume different clouds across multiple regions for varying use cases/workloads. The cost of migrating a legacy workload to be “cloudy” and move out of the customer datacenter can be prohibitive.  


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OpenStack will become the API to the software-defined data center

Bryan Thompson, General Manager, OpenStack Private Cloud, Rackspace. 

“In 2017, as the OpenStack community delivers the 15th and 16th major releases of the integrated projects (Ocata and Pike), this collection of projects will continue to represent one of the fastest growing open source communities in the world and will have unquestionably asserted its position as the de facto standard for building private clouds.

“The power of OpenStack continues to be the API – a standard interface allowing users and systems to interact with all manner of infrastructure including compute, network, storage and other fabric services.  As more and more organizations leverage OpenStack to power their private clouds, they will begin to realize the potential of the software-defined data center and the agility and innovation it can bring. 


The year of serverless computing?
John Engates, Chief Technology Officer, Rackspace

“Serverless computing is making developers’ lives easier, and if what I’m seeing and hearing holds true, 2017 is the year it will really take off. “Serverless,” of course, is a misnomer.

“There will always be servers; serverless architecture refers to applications that depend on third party services (backend-as-a-service) or custom code (function-as-a-service) — AWS Lambda being the most popular vendor host today. What serverless really means is that developers no longer have to worry about infrastructure. And as those barriers to IoT entry continue to fall, we’ll continue to see new players and their devices muscle into what appears to be an almost limitless potential market.” 

Advanced workloads in Microsoft Azure will be the primary catalyst to fuel datacenter defection to Azure
Jeff DeVerter, CTO of Microsoft Technologies, Rackspace. 

“Advancements in Azure like the Cortana Intelligence suite, Machine Learning, and the Azure Security Center will drive workloads to Azure in much greater numbers given the benefits of existing natively inside of Azure.  

“DevOps transformation and DataCenter Consolidation has been the primary advantage to moving to Public Cloud up to this point.  The beneficiaries have been primarily the IT community within a business. The higher-order capabilities mentioned above will have significant impacts on all areas of a business with significant tools to dynamically mine data, learn from actions of all type (not just machines), and keep the data and results secure. 

“Microsoft’s cloud isn’t just focused on making computing more efficient – it’s focused on transforming business as we know it.”



The release of Microsoft Azure Stack will make Azure the cloud of choice for enterprise workloads
Jeff DeVerter, CTO of Microsoft Technologies

“As belts tighten in all IT organizations and higher-order IT skills remain in short supply, IT organizations will be seize the opportunity to standardize on Azure – public and private – as a platform of choice. 

“Since the Azure Stack code is primarily derived from the same codebase as Azure – companies will be able to standardize on its own set of API’s and native Azure capabilities for their private cloud needs. These two products will bring a level of efficiency and capability to IT organizations not available before. 

Aaron Auld, CEO, Exasol. 

Deployment of cloud-based IT infrastructures will rapidly accelerate in 2017: “For companies of all shapes and sizes, irrespective of the market segments that they are active in, cloud is no longer something that only startups will embrace. In addition, analytics will move to the cloud and we’ll see AaaS (Analytics-as-a-Service) become standard practice for business.”

Hear from Salesforce, Fujitsu & Hortonworks on the next page. 

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