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Cloud carrying industry “forces”

15 Nov 2012

Cloud is the carrier for industry forces such as mobile, social media and big data.

Findings from the Gartner Symposium in Gold Coast suggest mobile is personal cloud, social media is only possible via the cloud, and big data is the killer app for the cloud meaning cloud will be the permanent fixture going forward.

“Cloud is not merely about cost-cutting, the end game is not just cheap on-demand services," said Peter Sondergaard, Gartner vice president.

"In fact, 90% of these services are still subscription based, not pay-as-you-go.

“We are just at the beginning of realising the cost benefits of cloud, but organisations moving to the cloud are also attracted by the new capabilities they do not get today.

"It is bringing new approaches to designing applications, specifically for the cloud, and providing more resilience by architecturing failure as a design concept.

"Cloud also teaches us about services and service levels, and the contrast between what the business wants for outcomes versus IT’s old methods of getting there.”

Mobile

By 2016, over 1.6 billion smart mobile devices will be purchased globally as two-thirds of the mobile workforce will own a smartphone, and 40% of the workforce will be mobile.

The challenge for IT leaders is determining what to do with this new channel to their customers and employees according to Sondergaard,

“Mobile is about computing at the right time, in the moment," he said.

"It is the point of entry for all applications, delivering personalised, contextual experiences.

“It means: marketing gets more time with the customer; employees become more productive; and process flows get dramatically cut.”

In less than two years, Gartner predicts iPads will be more common in business than Blackberries as CIOs are now placing orders for tens of thousands of iPads at a time with productivity the driver.

By 2018, 70% of mobile workers will use a tablet or a hybrid device that has tablet-like characteristics.

Social Computing

In the next three years, the dominant consumer social networks will limits their growth but social computing will become even more important.

Companies are establishing social media as a discipline with Gartner predicting over the next three years at least ten organisations will each spend over US$1 billion on social media.

“Social computing is moving from being just on the outside of the organisation to being at the core of business operations,” Sondergaard said.

“It is changing the fundamentals of management: how you establish a sense of purpose and motivate people to act.

"Social computing will move organisations from hierarchical structures and defined teams to communities that can cross any organisational boundary.”

Big Data

By tapping a continual stream of information from internal and external sources, businesses today have an array of new opportunities for: transforming decision-making; discovering new insights; optimising the business; and innovating their industries.

Big data creates a new layer in the economy according to Sondergaard, which is all about information, turning information, or data, into revenue to accelerate growth in the global economy and create jobs.

“Big data is about looking ahead, beyond what everybody else sees,” Sondergaard said.

“You need to understand how to deal with hybrid data, meaning the combination of structured and unstructured data, and how you shine a light on ‘dark data.’

Dark data is the data being collected, but going unused despite its value. Leading organisations of the future will be distinguished by the quality of their predictive algorithms.

"This is the CIO challenge, and opportunity.”

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