Forrester 2015 predictions report explains how cloud will be “the motivator”

James is editor in chief of TechForge Media, with a passion for how technologies influence business and several Mobile World Congress events under his belt. James has interviewed a variety of leading figures in his career, from former Mafia boss Michael Franzese, to Steve Wozniak, and Jean Michel Jarre. James can be found tweeting at @James_T_Bourne.

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Yes, it’s that time of year again. Everyone who’s got an opinion will be telling the world and his dog about their predictions for cloud computing in 2015. CloudTech will bring you the very best of these in due course, but for now analyst house Forrester has got theirs in early and proclaimed 2015 is the year when companies fighting the cloud will finally be a thing of the past.

The report, entitled “Predictions 2015: The Days of Fighting the Cloud Are Over”, examines 10 key trends for the coming year, offering two up for its non paying customers.

Microsoft’s cloudy revenues go up and up

The first point concerns big vendors and cloud revenues. In 2015, Forrester predicts Microsoft will make more profit from cloud than on-premise software.

It’s been the goal of many historically large IT vendors, from IBM, to SAP, and Oracle. These companies have taken on this mission with varying degrees of success. Yet Forrester seems to be cast under the spell of Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella’s cloud-first, mobile-first vision.

“Under Nadella’s new mandates, its development teams are focused on driving innovation into the cloud versions of its properties first, and its sales engines are all rewarded for pushing as much cloud into each enterprise license agreement as possible,” Dave Bartoletti, infrastructure and operations analyst at Forrester, wrote in a blog. “Consequently, Microsoft itself is embracing continuous delivery development methods.”

The company’s most recent financial results shed a little light on this prediction. Commercial cloud revenue grew 128% in the quarter, while server products and services revenue increased 13%. Comparatively, SAP saw cloud subscriptions at €738 million (£584.1m), a jump of 51% year over year, with software revenues at €2.53bn, a downturn of 3% from this time last year.

If SAP’s figures are going in the right direction strategically, nevertheless it’s a very long game, and therefore a bold prediction.

A change is as good as a REST

Forrester also predicts 2015 to be the year when back end systems will use REST to communicate with one another. REST is an architecture style for designing networked applications, and is increasingly being used to drive agile development, ahead of other protocols such as SOAP.

“If you want your back-office applications to be part of this move forward, relying on traditional integration methods such as enterprise service buses, JDBC connections and SOAP is inadequate for modern applications,” the report notes. “You’ll have to evolve your integration architecture to REST in 2015.”

Other trends, according to ZDNet, include the prevalence of Docker, an open source platform to ship and run apps from anywhere. Given Amazon is the latest company to buddy up with the software, after Google and Microsoft, this may be one of the safer bets. Similarly, Forrester also predicts the death spiral of the private managed cloud.

“In 2014, cloud entered the formal IT portfolio, and technology managers stopped treating cloud as competition,” Bartoletti wrote. “In 2015, cloud technologies will mature into the driving force powering the most successful companies.”

You can find the full report here (subscription required).

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