2019 Predictions: Hybrid Cloud, Data-Driven IoT, and More
When I look back on 2018, I see it as the year that communication providers were no longer just talking, but actually doing something about disruptions to their business by digital players. We saw traditional revenue channels become even more saturated, and communications providers looking to be more “digital native” in their speed to market, while also moving into areas like content at full force.
With a brand new year upon us, I see several other areas going full-scale, which means many communications providers are finally starting to believe the hype around them.
Here are some of my 2019 predictions.
The need for hybrid cloud can no longer be ignored
It’s no secret; moving to the hybrid cloud (or an environment with both traditional and cloud-based IT systems) can be a massive undertaking. A recent survey by Analysys Masonfound that 91% of respondents believe that operating cloud-native systems alongside traditional ones will become a critical challenge. Companies like Amazon, who previously stuck to more of a pure-cloud attitude to AWS, are even getting serious about effectively taking on the hybrid cloud.
I believe that 2019 will be the year where the hybrid cloud can no longer be ignored, and the majority of communication providers will need to need to figure out what they want to put on the cloud, what they don’t, and how to build a roadmap based on business value, not functionality.
eSIM goes full steam ahead, and into the enterprise
2018 was a pivotal moment for eSIM and consumer adoption. As I previously stated, with Apple entirely on board with eSIM, and communication providers slowly enabling it, it’s only a matter of time before eSIM-only becomes the standard in devices.
In 2019, the enterprise will look more closely at eSIM. For example, eSIM will significantly help enterprises with machine-to-machine technology roll-outs, enabling them to remotely change them quickly and efficiently. As you can imagine, this can make areas like public utility (like water meters) much easier to manage, and also gives communication providers a new revenue opportunity.
By working closely with device manufacturers, communication providers can guarantee that they are creating a smooth onboarding process, and will have a seat at the table for this soon-to-be explosion.
The analytics opportunity in IoT
According to research from Zebra, 86% of enterprises expect to increase their spending on IoT in 2019 and beyond. As more connected devices are put on the network through IoT solutions in both enterprise and consumer, understanding the information becomes increasingly important.
In 2019, I expect many device manufacturers to try to understand better how they can use this data to create improved business models. For example, I’ve seen a Bluetooth toothbrush that can change its speed depending on if you want whiter teeth, healthier gums, or fresher breath. But why not offer a subscription service of supplies for these given areas as a way to better motivate the brusher?
There is also ample opportunity around areas like fleet telematics and logistics. Hitachi claims that vehicle telematics data could unlock $1.5 trillion in future revenue for automakers, and communication providers can be a key enabler here.
What are your predictions?
While these areas may represent significant trends in 2019, there are plenty more. What are your predictions?