Welcome!

@CloudExpo Authors: Elizabeth White, Philippe Abdoulaye, Liz McMillan, Scott Sobhani, Scott Allen

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Microservices Expo, Containers Expo Blog, Agile Computing, @BigDataExpo, SDN Journal, @ThingsExpo

@CloudExpo: Article

2014: Customers Rejoice in the Year of Service Personalization

In 2014, we will see more service providers resolve to add more personalization in enterprise technology

As we enter a new year, it is time to look back over the past year and resolve to improve upon it. In 2014, we will see more service providers resolve to add more personalization in enterprise technology. Below are seven predictions about what will drive this trend toward personalization.

The Internet of Things turns into the Internet of Agents. M2M connections and multi-agent systems will result in an increasing number of highly personalized, value-added branded services. The latest Gartner forecast for the Internet of Things (IoT) predicts that by 2020, there will be $309 billion in incremental revenue opportunity for IoT suppliers, mostly in services. Everything-as-a service (XaaS) will lead us toward more complex services, more bundles and more options. Individual users will use agents whose sole job is to create functional services for individuals, out of everything available in the connected service universe. As we move closer toward XaaS, we will become familiar with the concept of "agents" in the delivery of those everything services via SaaS, PaaS and IaaS. Agents can reside as modules within SaaS service offerings or they can be tools embedded in the service provider infrastructure or operating systems. Agents can exist in cloud-connected devices, or in the management software within the evolving smart device ecosystem. Any service delivery platform (SDP) can contain agents that add functionality to the supported services by collaborating with other agents on other platforms.

Everything-as-a service does not tolerate mediocrity. Services will increasingly be decomposed, repositioned and resold or bundled with other services. Many common products will transition to being sold as a service, resulting in creative combinations of services that have never been thought of previously. Services will become encapsulated within other services and service components extracted from one service will be built into multiple others. In 2014, the gap between products that support the evolution to completely new business models and those that deliver simple efficiency gains will increase, creating a new crop of leaders and leaving many others behind.

Incomplete projects and unfulfilled promises reveal that the emperor has no clothes for many SaaS vendors. It sounded too good be true, and after the last couple of years of hype, enterprises will demand to see results before handing the keys to the kingdom to companies that promise to deliver business transformation. The requirements of Internet merchants and simple commerce do not easily translate to the enterprise, unless you are willing to start walking the path to commoditization. Enterprises will demand to see transformation results for a single line of business, in addition to scalability and performance proof points, before they agree to enterprise-wide deployments.

Cloud-as-we'd-like-it-to-be is not your father's cloud. 2014 will usher in entirely new business models for a uniquely cloud world that goes beyond today's primary use as a cost-reduction tool. We will see the start of the transition from cloud-as-it-is to cloud-as-we'd-like-it-to-be. Not the same old commodity cloud of the past, this cloud makes it possible for service providers to mash up offerings with third-party applications to tap into new markets. In formulating a new strategy for cloud adoption, the question will no longer be, "Should we?" but rather, "How far should we go, and how fast?"

The new cloud world will, when we get there, be dominated by ubiquitous, easily accessible and globally connected computing power available on-demand as shared resources to support computing services for those who want to use them.

Three paradigm shifts will occur in the world of cloud computing:

  • Connectedness instead of insularity
  • On-demand services instead of products
  • Access to shared resources instead of individual ownership

The move to this new cloud means we will be more connected rather than less connected; we will consume more computer-driven services and buy fewer computer hardware and software products; and we will benefit from the economies of scale and improved utilization by sharing more computing resources instead of building out our own. The cloud will bring ubiquitous access to immense software choices for users, at prices held low by the twin drivers of visible competition and a base cost minimized by the effective shared use of infrastructure and platform resources.

Software-defined networks (SDN) and network functions virtualization (NFV) become mainstream. With companies such as Google and Facebook already taking advantage of SDN for their networks, it is not a question of if, but when service providers begin to transition costly, proprietary networks that inhibit new service rollouts and revenue streams. We will see a radical change to commodity hardware populated by different kinds of software. Software will be where the differentiation is, while hardware will earn its living by being inexpensive, reliable and plentiful.

SDN and NFV signal the end of bad vendor behavior. Decades-long mistreatment by vendors will lead to the removal of "strategic vendors" from the preferred vendor list and replacement with new vendors that put the customers' needs first. In 2013, the first steps were taken as service providers realized that promises would remain unfulfilled for re-architected platforms desperately needed to support new services and revenue streams. In 2014 the death wish will begin to be fulfilled for traditional OSS/BSS suppliers and proprietary hardware vendors.

Monetizing the new cloud means survival, but only for the prepared. If you are an individual or a company consuming cloud services, you will, of course, be charged, and you will pay your bills. But if you are a cloud service provider, then life is likely to become more complicated. Simplistic cloud services are easy to copy, and with ever-decreasing barriers to entry, increasingly commoditized. Providers will take advantage of interconnectedness to work with multiple other providers to create new and sometimes unique services consisting of bundles of other services and service components. To do this requires more sophisticated pricing, bundling and partner settlement capabilities to take advantage of the cloud opportunity. For those who are prepared, they might just take on the market leaders to reshape the market as we know it.

What trends do you expect for 2014?

More Stories By Esmeralda Swartz

Esmeralda Swartz is VP, Marketing Enterprise and Cloud, BUSS. She has spent 15 years as a marketing, product management, and business development technology executive bringing disruptive technologies and companies to market. Esmeralda was CMO of MetraTech, now part of Ericsson. At MetraTech, Esmeralda was responsible for go-to-market strategy and execution for enterprise and SaaS products, product management, business development and partner programs. Prior to MetraTech, Esmeralda was co-founder, Vice President of Marketing and Business Development at Lightwolf Technologies, a big data management startup. She was previously co-founder and Senior Vice President of Marketing and Business Development of Soapstone Networks, a developer of resource and service control software, now part of Extreme Networks.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@CloudExpo Stories
Creating replica copies to tolerate a certain number of failures is easy, but very expensive at cloud-scale. Conventional RAID has lower overhead, but it is limited in the number of failures it can tolerate. And the management is like herding cats (overseeing capacity, rebuilds, migrations, and degraded performance). Download Slide Deck: ▸ Here In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Scott Cleland, Senior Director of Product Marketing for the HGST Cloud Infrastructure Business Unit, discusse...
A strange thing is happening along the way to the Internet of Things, namely far too many devices to work with and manage. It has become clear that we'll need much higher efficiency user experiences that can allow us to more easily and scalably work with the thousands of devices that will soon be in each of our lives. Enter the conversational interface revolution, combining bots we can literally talk with, gesture to, and even direct with our thoughts, with embedded artificial intelligence, wh...
What does it look like when you have access to cloud infrastructure and platform under the same roof? Let’s talk about the different layers of Technology as a Service: who cares, what runs where, and how does it all fit together. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Phil Jackson, Lead Technology Evangelist at SoftLayer, an IBM company, spoke about the picture being painted by IBM Cloud and how the tools being crafted can help fill the gaps in your IT infrastructure.
SaaS companies can greatly expand revenue potential by pushing beyond their own borders. The challenge is how to do this without degrading service quality. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Adam Rogers, Managing Director at Anexia, discussed how IaaS providers with a global presence and both virtual and dedicated infrastructure can help companies expand their service footprint with low “go-to-market” costs.
"delaPlex is a software development company. We do team-based outsourcing development," explained Mark Rivers, COO and Co-founder of delaPlex Software, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
IoT is rapidly changing the way enterprises are using data to improve business decision-making. In order to derive business value, organizations must unlock insights from the data gathered and then act on these. In their session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Hoffman, Vice President at EastBanc Technologies, and Peter Shashkin, Head of Development Department at EastBanc Technologies, discussed how one organization leveraged IoT, cloud technology and data analysis to improve customer experiences and effi...
The U.S. Army Intelligence and Security Command (INSCOM) has awarded BAE Systems a five-year contract worth as much as $75 million to provide enhanced geospatial intelligence technical and analytical support. The award was issued under the INSCOM Global Intelligence indefinite delivery, indefinite quantity contract.
The IoT is changing the way enterprises conduct business. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Hoffman, Vice President at EastBanc Technologies, discussed how businesses can gain an edge over competitors by empowering consumers to take control through IoT. He cited examples such as a Washington, D.C.-based sports club that leveraged IoT and the cloud to develop a comprehensive booking system. He also highlighted how IoT can revitalize and restore outdated business models, making them profitable ...
There are several IoTs: the Industrial Internet, Consumer Wearables, Wearables and Healthcare, Supply Chains, and the movement toward Smart Grids, Cities, Regions, and Nations. There are competing communications standards every step of the way, a bewildering array of sensors and devices, and an entire world of competing data analytics platforms. To some this appears to be chaos. In this power panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, Bradley Holt, Developer Advocate a...
Predictive analytics tools monitor, report, and troubleshoot in order to make proactive decisions about the health, performance, and utilization of storage. Most enterprises combine cloud and on-premise storage, resulting in blended environments of physical, virtual, cloud, and other platforms, which justifies more sophisticated storage analytics. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Peter McCallum, Vice President of Datacenter Solutions at FalconStor, discussed using predictive analytics to mon...
Dialogic has announced that ZVRS chose Dialogic® PowerMedia™ XMS software media server as part of its latest video relay and translation service offering. ZVRS uses Dialogic’s PowerMedia XMS technology to provide a robust solution that supports a broad range of legacy devices and any-to-any video capabilities with its flagship Z70 videophone. ZVRS selected Dialogic’s solution to facilitate a release of Z70 that met its stringent requirements for legacy device support (H.263 and H.264) with high...
"SpeedyCloud's specialty lies in providing cloud services - we provide IaaS for Internet and enterprises companies," explained Hao Yu, CEO and co-founder of SpeedyCloud, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Your business relies on your applications and your employees to stay in business. Whether you develop apps or manage business critical apps that help fuel your business, what happens when users experience sluggish performance? You and all technical teams across the organization – application, network, operations, among others, as well as, those outside the organization, like ISPs and third-party providers – are called in to solve the problem.
More and more companies are looking to microservices as an architectural pattern for breaking apart applications into more manageable pieces so that agile teams can deliver new features quicker and more effectively. What this pattern has done more than anything to date is spark organizational transformations, setting the foundation for future application development. In practice, however, there are a number of considerations to make that go beyond simply “build, ship, and run,” which changes ho...
"Avere Systems is a hybrid cloud solution provider. We have customers that want to use cloud storage and we have customers that want to take advantage of cloud compute," explained Rebecca Thompson, VP of Marketing at Avere Systems, in this SYS-CON.tv interview at 18th Cloud Expo, held June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY.
Machine Learning helps make complex systems more efficient. By applying advanced Machine Learning techniques such as Cognitive Fingerprinting, wind project operators can utilize these tools to learn from collected data, detect regular patterns, and optimize their own operations. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Stuart Gillen, Director of Business Development at SparkCognition, discussed how research has demonstrated the value of Machine Learning in delivering next generation analytics to imp...
The cloud market growth today is largely in public clouds. While there is a lot of spend in IT departments in virtualization, these aren’t yet translating into a true “cloud” experience within the enterprise. What is stopping the growth of the “private cloud” market? In his general session at 18th Cloud Expo, Nara Rajagopalan, CEO of Accelerite, explored the challenges in deploying, managing, and getting adoption for a private cloud within an enterprise. What are the key differences between wh...
University of Colorado Athletics has selected FORTRUST, Colorado’s only Tier III Gold certified data center, as their official data center and colocation services provider, FORTRUST announced today. A nationally recognized and prominent collegiate athletics program, CU provides a high quality and comprehensive student-athlete experience. The program sponsors 17 varsity teams and in their history, the Colorado Buffaloes have collected an impressive 28 national championships. Maintaining uptime...
It's easy to assume that your app will run on a fast and reliable network. The reality for your app's users, though, is often a slow, unreliable network with spotty coverage. What happens when the network doesn't work, or when the device is in airplane mode? You get unhappy, frustrated users. An offline-first app is an app that works, without error, when there is no network connection. In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Bradley Holt, a Developer Advocate with IBM Cloud Data Services, discussed...
Connected devices and the industrial internet are growing exponentially every year with Cisco expecting 50 billion devices to be in operation by 2020. In this period of growth, location-based insights are becoming invaluable to many businesses as they adopt new connected technologies. Knowing when and where these devices connect from is critical for a number of scenarios in supply chain management, disaster management, emergency response, M2M, location marketing and more. In his session at @Th...