As the new year starts off it is common to look at what the researchers are saying about the newest trends in IT, technology in general and what may be the flavour of the coming months.
Trying to figure out what will happen and when is a tough task for any new year but for now it is even tougher I think. So much of what drives IT decision making is impacted by things that most SMBs and smaller organizations are unable to control. On the other hand, what is done by the 'big guys' will affect the availability of tools for smaller organizations and also will lay the ground for many of the trends which affect everyone.
IT World Canada has published a series of articles which capture the predictions of three of the major IT monitors, Gartner, Forrester and IDC. While each focuses on a bit different view of the world they are predict that 2017 is going to be a year where major impacts occur rather than a more business as usual environment.
Gartner's Top Ten Strategic Predictions - Disruptive change, not Ho-Hum incremental Change.
Forrester's Top CIO Predictions - Customer demand pushes change to AI (Artificial Intelligence) and IofT (Internet of Things)
IDC`s 2017 CIO Predictions - IT will monetize data and CIOs will recognize limits of traditional IT
Take a few minutes and follow the links to the articles as they open some questions which you most likely have not thought through as yet. Even if you are full immersed they reflect a thoughtful approach to big issues which every business will face in the next few months and years.
Government addresses big issues as well
In a recent announcement which has received media coverage in December it was announced that the CRTC has called for new guidelines for broadband coverage in Canada. The headlines talk about bringing broadband speeds and capacity to rural and remote areas of the country but also in the details are calls for increasing the speeds and capacity in areas already being served. The push is for both broadband and mobile improvements.
Certainly, for users who find themselves attempting to connect in rural and remote areas in the country improvements (as long as the costs also improve) in both areas will be welcomed. Given the largely uncompetitive nature of the Canadian telecommunications market where so much of it is dominated by three large national companies this new CRTC objective is going to be a real challenge. The major players seem to only want to compete to grab market share in the large urban markets and to maintain the relatively high Canadian rates(compared to similar international markets).
It will be interesting to see what the CRTC is able to do to influence the carriers to meet the new objectives and how the proposed targets get passed through to consumers, both personal and in the commercial market.
Internet security and the IofT trend remains an ongoing issue
2016 has been a year of threats and negative impacts from an IT security view. The end of the year saw several stories about the 1 billion email accounts hacked at Yahoo over the past several years. This was only one of the biggest of the thousands of impacts which have been recorded. Of course the US election hacking data has been the most notorious of all and has been well reported.
On the IofT front there have been several warnings about the linkages that this trend to connecting everything from garage door openers, to broad home automation, to commercial security systems, to appliances, to automobiles as well as to the communications devices we all carry are becoming the most problematic areas of IT security. Predictions are that the number of devices interconnected by 2020 will be in the order of 20 billion, each with some potential to become a gateway to some sort of cybercrime.
Big issues. Big challenges. Big disruption potential. Major reasons to take time to learn, study and deploy the protections available to you whether in software, hardware or most importantly in training users.
2017, like every year before is going to be a busy year in IT.