The latest cloud computing trends in 2019

It’s 2019, and the Cloud is everywhere—from the apps we use every day to the infrastructure of global tech giants.

According to researchers at Gartner, revenue generated from public cloud services is projected to grow 17.5 percent in 2019. This amounts to a total of $214.3 billion, up from $182.4 billion in 2018.

More than a third of organizations surveyed by Gartner saw cloud investments as a top three investment priority. With this kind of growth, tech organizations are racing to get onboard with cloud-only software and platforms. Here are some of the trends to look out for this year:

Hybrid Cloud, Multi-Cloud and Mergers

IBM announced its purchase of Red Hat last October, calling it the “most significant tech acquisition of 2018.” This combined Red Hat’s extensive network of open-source clouds with IBM’s Hybrid Cloud team.

Mergers like these are likely to become a trend this year, as companies see the vast benefit of using multiple clouds across all sectors of their organization. Furthermore, this system will dominate in the future, as businesses find public clouds inadequate to meet every one of their requirements.

As a more flexible and functional solution, many organizations will shift to a network of multiple private, public and hybrid clouds in the coming years.

Serverless Cloud

Serverless computing is a young market in technology, but it will continue growing in 2019. Serverless computing isn’t actually “serverless.” Instead, it is a cloud-computing model in which the cloud provider itself runs the server on a dynamic, as-used basis (FaaS).

Rather than buying server space, developers can simply use a back-end cloud service to code, only paying for the server space they actually use.

As this relatively new technology develops, we can expect to see more companies providing and expanding their “serverless” offerings.

Artificial Intelligence

Although cloud technologies are growing exponentially, artificial intelligence (AI) could prove an even greater economic driving force. This is because according to Accenture, the impact of AI could double economic growth rates by 2035 in developed countries. 

Around 80 percent of large companies have adopted some form of AI, according to the Harvard Business Review.

Amazon, Twilio and Nvidia, to name a few, are thus, incorporating AI with cloud computing, next-gen GPUs and the Internet of Things (IoT). This has led to the developing of applications with “smart assistants,” and voice-to-text technologies.

Such a combination of AI and the cloud provides an extremely powerful and unconstrained computing network.

Security

Digital transformation is already underway, with Gartner also projecting that 83 percent of all workloads will shift to the cloud by 2020. However, this movement presents issues of cybersecurity.

Many businesses have not properly secured their cloud-stored data. For example, marketing and data aggregation firm Exactis left around 340 million records exposed on its cloud servers. This was uncovered in a data breach last year.

Mitigating factors

The implementation of the General Data Practice Regulations (GDPR) makes this even trickier. The GDPR affects cloud security, and IT companies will likely struggle to comply with these new laws while protecting sensitive information.

Cloud computing services are progressing exponentially, as are their new developments. As a result, 2019 will surely be filled with businesses pouring investment into enterprise solutions. This while expanding, securing and implementing cloud technologies to their fullest extent.

Bridget is a freelance writer and editor, and the founder of Lost Bridge Blog, where she writes about traveling as a Millennial woman on a budget. When not writing, you can find her traveling, drinking inhuman amounts of caffeine and scrolling through the latest tech & political news.
N26 Bank
N26 Bank

A digital address for everything

The ‘Internet of Things’ (IoT) as the name suggests is basically connecting as many devices online for them to communicate with each other.

If you think that is a far-fetched concept it is nothing new. We have been using it since the advent of GSM, Infrared, GPS, GPRS, Bluetooth, Wi-Fi and other wireless connections.

To put the concept into further context, your Smartphone/watch, Bluetooth headset, your wireless printer or smart fridge are all components of the ‘Internet of Things’. They all require a sensor or chip to connect or collaborate with each other.

Origins

The term was supposedly coined about a decade ago. This when a company executive discussed an idea which sounded bizarrely unnecessary and over-futuristic at the time.

He advocated for the need for a chip for every electronic device. The initially requirement was for supply chain and automation in the retail industry.

Fast forward to today, and this has indeed come to fruition. We now have smart cars, smart homes and even tracking chips inserted into pets!

So, each component or part of the object is equipped with an individual chip (small processor) with a unique IP address.

The very same the IP address used to identify your home modem or Office server.

IOT application

Why would you want that you might ask? Wouldn’t it be useful for devices and machines to work things out by themselves – to solve complex problems before you even become aware of them?

This is in fact how the devices communicate with the central server to relate pertinent information.  An example is the use of fuzzy logic: to regulate the temperature in the fridge (to avoid food getting mouldy); or to check amount of water used in one washing cycle in the washing machine. 

Another practical use would be to check car tyres pressure and temperature (to avoid overheating and bursting).

Can you then imagine the number of chips that are required for the typical household.  For the a car, security alarm, fridge, microwave, tumble dryer, TVs, Radios, computers/tablets, lighting and heating/cooling system? Each would require a unique IP address

IP address shortage

Talks about IOT highlighted the need for more IP addresses and a need to track or generate them. This as it is evident we are running out of ‘normal’ IP addresses known as IP4: 4 denotes the number of billion IP addresses available.

At the birth of the Internet age in the 1980s, no one ever envisioned a time when the world would need more than four million IP addresses. But with the need as mentioned above for internet of things – that has come to pass.

Without getting too technical, the issue is being resolved with the development of a newer IP system known as the IP6.

The main difference between the two but it is merely that one is on 32-bit system while the newer on 128-bit and that influences merely the length of the addresses.

Again, the technicalities would only matter to the now growing IoT industry and would not affect us as individuals.

Practical uses of IOT

Large companies that need to manufacture a lot of parts for their devices would need to insert an IP address on each piece. From items as trivial as the car side-mirror; to more serious parts like the helmet of a sportsperson engaging in the heavy contact sport.

sphero-sprk-plus-3From an education perspective, the IoT can make learning a lot more fun for kids and young adults. Toy-maker Sphero, for example, has been long making wireless operated toys like its SPRK+(pictured).

The idea is to fuse physical (programmable) robotic toys with digital apps.

This would simultaneously provide entertainment experiences while inspiring tomorrow’s leaders in maths, engineering and science.

There are discussions to extend this connectedness to human beings – much like was prophesied in many sci-fi books and George Orwell’s 1984. If there was a ‘rise of the machines’, and Artificial Intelligence  was to take over the control of all our devices, we would not stand a chance.

There are also a few new decentralised systems that are even advocating for a fragmented Internet for that very reason (security and privacy). This would enable you to control your little space within the “interconnected” web.

You can thus run a (private) local area network (LAN) within the Internet domain – if that makes any sense.

Blockchain advocates and companies like IOTA and Chinese-based Crypto-firm Tron are pushing the IoT and the decentralisation of the whole Internet narrative hard.

It is only a matter of time before this becomes the norm. Companies are now queuing to get the IP6s and have incorporated adding them to the manufacturing processes.

Once the security and privacy issues have been adequately planned and implemented, the pros of the full adoption of IoT will outweigh the cons.

Anonymous Surfing

You don’t have to be an online arsonist, hacker or international cyber-terrorist to hide your online identity. Likewise, concealing your PC’s web address or (better known as) your Internet Protocol address (IP address), making it unknown to the public, does not necessarily mean you are up to no good online.

Debunqed.com will, therefore,  build a case for why it is important at times to conceal your private online location with the use of VPNs (Virtual Private Networks).

A VPN is a connection method used to add security and privacy to private and public networks, like Wi-Fi Hotspots and the Internet. They are most often used by corporations to protect sensitive data but now also by the man on the street for the very same necessity.

Getting back to the importance of your IP address: it is probably something you rarely think about but is very crucial to your online lifestyle even as an individual. How so? You might still ask.

Well, without an IP address, you wouldn’t be able to get the current weather, check the latest news or view at videos (streaming) online for instance.

VPN-Protect-you

Click here or on the image to view a quick video

The uses of VPNs

Your IP is also used for basically every online service you partake in including very private things such as your internet/mobile banking or online trading activity.  Think of it as your physical address and how important it is when getting things delivered by post or using it when you need to make applications for loans, jobs etc.

“Without a public IP address, online service providers like Netflix, BBC or Amazon wouldn’t know where to send the information you asked for. They wouldn’t be able to get it to your computer.”

One can now imagine how naked you must feel if you have nothing to protect this address from the advent of a hack without adequate data encryption.  Also the just the haggling by overzealous online marketers, spam, malware, and even 419 scammers!

Now the argument for whether using VPNs is illegal is highly debatable for some of the valid reasons highlighted above. It should, however, be a given right  to be able to use it. And even though it is commonly used by cyber-thugs to mask their clandestine and often dark activities, it should not be outlawed altogether.

The case for VPN

The legitimacy of VPNs debate therefore, carries on into a grey area.

avg-secure-vpn-featuredWe will, however, investigate a few VPN providers that are ‘paid for services’ and even offered by established companies such as AVG (which primarily offers Antivirus protection).

The directive is to help the everyday consumer surf the web without ‘virtual’ salespeople bombarding them with offers based on personal information gathered in an ‘unsolicited’ manner.

Policies like the European-based GDPR law were put in place to protect consumers from the non-consensus use of their data. Even your Internet Service Providers (ISPs) can track your online activities via your IP and sell your browsing habits.

Some forward-thinking people and companies, however, have long been shielding themselves manually using VPNs.

One direct benefit for you as a consumer is the ability to access content (information, products, and services) from different servers. A good VPN service can enable you to obtain access to other geo-locational content despite being on a different continent.

Take the example of Netflix: if you use a VPN in Europe it enables you to have international access to content from the US by using a US-based server for access.

It is perfectly legal provided you are paying for the service. The burden falls on the provider of the service and not the end user if it came down to a legal “scrap”.

If you need to do these tasks frequently, you need a VPN:

  • To hide your IP address (to enable anonymity from marketers and hackers)
  • Change your IP address (to avoid identity theft)
  • Encrypt data transfers (private and financial data)
  • Mask your location (to access other services)
  • Access blocked websites

250x250A word of caution for the last reason, i.e when navigating websites blocked by governments with a VPN: Unless you are a high-profile journalist working on a case and backed by good legal aid – it’s not a wise thing to do.

Do some research if you are not sure because accessing such sites (and not necessarily just government sites) could land you in some hot water. Rather use a known privacy service like Tor to ensure full anonymity to gain access to restricted sites if you really must.


Top Virtual Private Network Protocols

VPN protocols and available security features are numerous. The most common (best) protocols are:

ExpressVPNthe acclaimed best offshore VPN for privacy and unblocking.

IPVanish great for P2P and Torrenting.

VyprVPNthe best choice for those looking for security.

NordVPNsecurity is its middle name.

TunnelBeardubbed the easiest VPN to use.

Windscribea VPN which gives you unlimited connections.

Hotspot Shieldan awesome solution for online browsing.

KeepSolid VPN Unlimitedthe jack of all trades of VPNs.

CyberGhostrich clients and ease of reconfiguring.

ZenMateuser-friendly VPN that caters to the newbies to VPN.

PureVPNtake advantage of easy to use apps and access to many servers.

Source: www.itproportal.com, PureVpn

Picking a VPN service can be a daunting task as there are now literally hundreds of them to choose from. Landing the right one means striking the right balance between services, ease of use and pricing.

Some providers offer free VPN services while some like AVG charges for their VPN service. Paid VPN providers, however, are preferred to the free service providers as they offer robust gateways, proven security, additional free software, and unmatched speed.

The key is to find the best VPN that meets your immediate needs while matching your budget.