IoT, Big data, Hybrid Cloud to be India’s mega trends for 2015

By: Anil Valluri, President, NetApp India & SAARC

If 2014 was a year of big change in technology and new visions for India by the government – the digital India, Make in India and the smart cities campaign, 2015 will solidify these changes and start a transformation. Technology will play an important role, with massive deployments in network, data, storage and analytics. Some top technology trends we envisage in India are –

# Mushrooming of Internet of Things and Big Data Analytics

The year ahead will see quantum increases in data generation, led by the IOT phenomenon. Data will become the new gold. A leading industry analyst firm’s Digital Universe analysis of the growth of data projects that intelligent connected devices will increase the amount of “useful data” that can be analyzed and used to make decisions from 22% in 2013 to 35% in 2020. This “useful data” needs to be in digital storage in order to enable the analysis and use of this data. This will compel enterprises and government alike to think harder about network efficiency, storage and analytics. If India is to achieve the goals we have set for ourselves in 2014, a calibrated approach is an imperative, born of long term technology roadmaps. Analytics deployments will be spurred in the increasingly complex marketing and consumer engagement environment that have been created in the digital era.

# Enterprise platforms will move to multi-vendor hybrid cloud architectures

Organizations contemplating both green field and brown field cloud deployments will tend towards a multi-vendor hybrid cloud environment, that will provide the benefits of both the worlds – public and private cloud.  Avoidance of lock-in, leverage in negotiations, or simply a desire for choice will make customers reluctant to work with one cloud vendor, and multiple-vendor hybrid clouds will attain prominence. This growth will further be boosted as big data evolves and drives the need for sophisticated storage infrastructure.

# Software Defined Storage will form the foundation for hybrid cloud

Software Defined Storage (SDS) is foundational platform which address range of use cases managing data placement according to cost, compliance, availability, and performance requirements. SDS has the ability to be deployed on different hardware platforms and will extend to cloud architectures as well. SDS will enable data accessibility across cloud platforms consistently, thus simplifying data management.

In addition, India will see fallout impact of the following global trends in 2015 (as predicted by Jay Kidd, SVP and CTO, NetApp)

# Flash arrays will take baby steps

Till date, enterprises have used disks to store their critical data. These SATA disks come with a lot of challenges including space usage, time taken to input and overhead costs to maintain the requisite environment. While this is definitely not going to change and at least 80% of enterprise data will continue to reside on disks, Flash will start taking baby steps as organizations become aware of its advantages and ease of use. However, the growth of this transformative technology will be hindered by costs – the least expensive SSDs will likely be 10 times more expensive than the least expensive SATA disks.

# Hyper-Converged Infrastructure is the New Compute Server

Hyper-converged Infrastructure (HCI) products are becoming the new compute server with Direct-Attached Storage (DAS). Traditional data center compute consists of blades or boxes in racks that have dedicated CPUs, memory, I/O and network connections, and run dozens of VMs. HCI such as VMware’s EVO allows local DAS to be shared across a few servers, making the unit of compute more resilient, while broadly shared data is accessed over the LAN or SAN. Starting in 2015, the emergence of solid state storage, broader adoption of remote direct memory access (RDMA) network protocols, and new interconnects will drive a compute model where the cores, memory, and IOPs storage will be integrated in a low-latency fabric that will make them behave as a single rack-scale system.

# Dockers replace hypervisors as the container of choice for scale-out applications

Companies are increasingly looking for scale-out applications. To accommodate this need, Dockers are more resource efficient and reduce the storage space required as compared to hypervisors. We will see the emergence of a robust ecosystem for data management through Dockers and other surrounding services in 2015.

With the IoT devices expected to grow to 4.9 billion in 2015, up 30 per cent from 2014 and reach 25 billion by 2020 as per a leading analyst firm, unstructured data is being created by every device thinkable – from smartphones, laptops, social to cloud applications. Organizations need to become technologically sharp to deal with the changing dynamics in the big data space. They should adopt improved storage solutions to address their needs and the above predictions hold good for them.