Mobile integration and hybrid cloud to be expected in 2013

By Jon Smith

With more and more firms looking to cut down on digital storage space in 2013, one area of IT management that is set to expand is the reliance on cloud computing. The cloud industry is still in its relative infancy, although there are already key trends that are expected to develop in the industry this year.

Integrated cloud and mobile

The reliance between mobile and cloud activities is expected to become all the stronger in 2013.

More and more mobile applications are linked to cloud back-end services and the majority of cloud services have a mobile application. One firm proving this link is CloudOn, which aims to optimise Microsoft services for mobile devices. The company’s software is hosted on an application housed in the Amazon Web Services cloud.

Personal clouds

In the old days, an employee’s computer would be the one location where information is stored. However, with the advent of cloud computing, more and more experts expect that workers will use a range of cloud services to store their data.

In the words of analytics firm Gartner, “no one platform, form factor, technology or vendor will dominate. The personal cloud shifts the focus from the client device to cloud-based services delivered across devices”.

Cloud hybrids

With more users adopting personal clouds, it is thought the IT industry will respond by having a mixture of personal and private clouds to store their data.

Virtualisation, application interfaces and varying cloud environments will all be utilised to blend with the public cloud within companies own data centres.

Increased use in the healthcare field

Although cloud computing is expected to rise across a number of sectors in 2013, one particular area where it is already making headway is the health care sector.

Indeed, predictions from market research firm Markets & Markets stated that cloud usage will rise from 4% in 2011 to a staggering 20.5% in the next year. There have been a few doubts about patient security and data protection, but cloud computing and software-as-a-service (SaaS) models are already being used by firms such as Practice Fusion to provide value in the health care field.

These are just a few of the trends expected to emerge in 2013. However, some estimates state that as many as 50% of businesses will be using cloud services by the year 2016, with reliance on the cloud only on the rise over the next few years.

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