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2013: Year of the hybrid cloud

Hybrid clouds, cloud brokers, big data and software-defined networking (SDN) predicted to be the major trends in cloud computing in 2013.

By , Network World
December 03, 2012 12:08 AM ET

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Prediction 9: IaaS-based services will expand

EMA's Corbo predicts there will be an increase in services delivered as part of standard IaaS offerings.

"You will see IT folks thinking hard and long about what other infrastructure services can be off-loaded into the cloud," Corbo says. Specifically, she expects to see growth in the areas of WAN optimization (a service is already offered by a startup called Aryaka and mainstays such as Cisco and Akamai have made some movement in this direction) and load balancing as a service in the cloud (Amazon and Rackspace both offer these services).

"It's not a question of being able to do this stuff in-house. It's a matter of figuring out if it's cheaper and more efficient to do it in the cloud," Corbo says.

Prediction 10: Prepare for more outages and shakeouts

Corbo and Gartner's Leong were in sync on their prediction that if customers are asking the public cloud infrastructures to take on more and more responsibilities, then they should be prepared to accept more downtime as well.

Outages are bigger risk than breaches

"Outages will happen as a matter of course," Leong says. "It can't really be helped when you take into consideration all of the permutations of all the services riding on these infrastructures. There is no way every contingency can be tested for."

CSA's Reavis warns that customers should be prepared for other kinds of failures in the cloud in 2013 as well: business failures.

Since we are in a natural part of the entrepreneurial business cycle for cloud, we can expect to see several cloud startups get acquired, change their business focus or go out of business entirely, Reavis says.

"These shakeouts will have differing consequences impacting the availability of customer data and information systems. Customers need to make sure they are mitigating these risks through a combination of building redundancy in cloud security architectures and performing due diligence in cloud business relationships," he says.

Burns is a freelance writer. She can be reached at cburns1227@gmail.com.

Read more about cloud computing in Network World's Cloud Computing section.

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