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Cloud storage for enterprise use should spike in 2017

Storage CTOs predict enterprise cloud adoption will increase in 2017, with a boost from new development and management technologies to assist with planning and deployment.

The shift toward cloud storage for enterprise use will fuel an increase in strategic planning in 2017, according to top technologists at leading storage vendors.

IT shops will need to map out their strategy for adopting cloud storage for enterprise use cases and decide what data goes on premises and off premises. They'll get an assist from new technologies and tools that can determine optimal data placement and management software that can span on-site and off-site environments, the CTOs said.

Below are predictions from leading storage technical experts on what we'll see from cloud storage in 2017 and beyond.

Cloud storage for enterprise predictions

Hu Yoshida, CTO, Hitachi Data SystemsHu Yoshida

Hu Yoshida, CTO, Hitachi Data Systems: The bulk of storage will eventually move to the cloud. More and more people will see the advantage. If you look at the new disruptive companies, most of them are in the cloud, like Airbnb and Uber. They have changed the business model. Traditional businesses are responding to that. Everybody's focusing on digital transformation.

The explosion of technology we've seen in the last 10 years and the efficiencies we gained in IT have not translated into productivity gains in terms of delivery of goods and services. Productivity has declined ... despite all this technology. The main reason is that we have not used the technology in new ways. A bank showed me their new mobile loan app, but it still takes them three weeks to deliver or approve the loan. It's not just about technology anymore. It's more about changing the business process and enabling people to innovate faster.

The movement to cloud is going to accelerate, and the buying model changes. Cloud provisioning is an on-demand type of model. Instead of contracts, we're going to buy services on an outcome basis. You don't get paid unless you deliver. Licensing is also going to change and move to a subscription model.

Milan Shetti, CTO of data center infrastructure, HPEMilan Shetti

Milan Shetti, CTO of the data center infrastructure group, Hewlett Packard Enterprise: Recognition of hybrid IT in the data center will start in '17, with greater understanding on what stays on premises in data centers, what goes to the public cloud and how they work together. Every customer, small or large, is going to go through the decision process on hybrid IT. Public cloud has given this centralized infrastructure for customers to deploy whatever applications and services they need. But because of flash and persistent memory, users are going to realize they could actually get public cloud economics in their data centers, without having to move the data back and forth, which is very expensive.

Vincent Hsu, CTO, IBMVincent Hsu

Vincent Hsu, fellow, vice president and CTO, IBM Storage: Software-defined storage (SDS) will be able to run on premises and off premises, enabling a lower-cost way to create new data centers. The other focus will be making things work as one data ocean versus multiple different silos. The last thing you want is SDS on-prem and off-prem, and [it] require[s] a lot of manual management of what data goes where. You will start to see cognitive technologies show up to help clients figure out the optimal data and workload placement. Moving the workload to the right place is a new hybrid cloud initiative in 2017... moving the application to where the data is, not the other way around.

Rajiv Mirani, SVP of engineering, NutanixRajiv Mirani

Rajiv Mirani, senior vice president of engineering, Nutanix: We're going to see full-stack data center management, with the ability to burst into the cloud. There's very little cloud integration today. If I deploy something on hyper-converged infrastructure, it's not trivial for me to say, 'When my appliance reaches capacity, additional instances of my application should be automatically provisioned in a public cloud environment, such as Amazon or Azure.' Nobody does that today. Vendors who can deliver application management for both on-premises infrastructure and in the cloud will be the most successful in the long run.

Christos Karamanolis, CTO, VMwareChristos Karamanolis

Christos Karamanolis, fellow and CTO of the storage and availability business unit at VMware: Server-based storage is going to enable for the first time a unified operational model for primary storage across data centers on premises and in the public cloud. In the case of VMware, it's going to be vSAN. In the case of Microsoft, I expect this to be Storage Spaces. [This] gives the customer the ability to use the same operational model no matter where their IT infrastructure lives. Today, the main public clouds do not offer storage that is functionally equivalent to storage area networks.

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