We have entered the year 2019 and will soon complete two decades of the twenty-first century – the era in which technology grew at an unprecedented pace. From desktops to mobile computing devices available in a variety of sizes, from the basic cellular phone to smartphones that have apps for multifarious transactions and seamless social networking, tech trends have significantly transformed business and consumer habits in the last 19 years.
Enterprise network trends and the way enterprises connect to the Internet have also undergone several changes in the past few years. With big data, IoT, machine learning and artificial intelligence becoming increasingly crucial for businesses, the trends that are expected to impact business connectivity in 2019 may be classified under the following heads:
Growth in Adoption of Cloud Solutions
As their data and variety of custom software/enterprise apps continue to increase, more and more businesses will be now turning to cloud for storage and computing solutions. Cloud platforms offer users the benefits of agility and scalability along with cost benefits.
The top concern that prevents most organisations from shifting their business assets to the cloud is security. Will my data stay safe in a public cloud? Can any unauthorised entity access it? Will my applications work as effectively as they do on on-premise systems? These are the questions that give business owners sleepless nights while planning for cloud computing solutions.
Fortunately, measures can be taken to make cloud platforms secure for businesses. Tata Tele Business Services (TTBS) has introduced a feature called ‘Secure Connect’ that practically privatises a public cloud environment. Businesses using the service get their own space on cloud safeguarded by robust security protocols that prevent any data leak to unauthorised personnel or malicious bots.
With the ease of operating critical applications and space to contain terabytes of data, these secure cloud platforms will be increasingly leveraged by businesses.
Networks to Become More Elaborate
Cisco had estimated that there would be approximately 27 billion connected devices¹ by the year 2021, and more than 40% of all devices will get connected. The rise in the number of employees working from home will make things more complex for business IT administrators. To collaborate with their colleagues, such a workforce relies on telecommunication and VoIP calls. Further, businesses will need to invest in better connectivity tools such as Internet Leased Lines and MPLS VPN to enable seamless collaboration.
The growing use of cloud solutions, continual development of data-heavy software and rising demand for bandwidth to enable streaming of videos and social media apps will also lead to more complex networks. To ensure the efficiency of their operations and avoid incidents of downtime in such an environment, businesses will have to invest in sophisticated network technologies.
Greater Focus on Strengthening Network Security
With more of connected devices and increased complexity of networks, the incidents of cyber attacks can also increase. The possibilities of cyber threats augment in multi-vendor environments where it is difficult to understand and control how IT security strategies adapt to each tool. Such problems will be addressed with a unified approach to threat management where a single service provider offers integrated security solutions
TTBS has a customised offering for businesses that want to strengthen their network security in this age. Our Virtual Unified Threat Management (vUTM) package comprises services for critical security functions including firewall, intrusion detection and prevention, anti-virus, anti-spam and filtering of web content. We also have DDoS mitigation services and mobile device management solutions for the security of complex networks.
Increase in 5G Deployment and 5G-Based Ecosystems
Telecom service operators have started their 5G trials. The first round of deployments may begin in early 2019. 5G aims at enriching the experience for not merely the mobile device users, but the entire communication technology network. Businesses that have active BYOD culture or a mobile workforce travelling to remote locations will benefit the most from 5G deployments. With high bandwidth and possibilities of very low latency, 5G is also set to spark the development of new apps based on augmented reality and virtual reality (ARVR).
IoT Solutions Will See Further Deployments
In tandem with big data analytics and machine learning, the usage of IoT technology consistently expanded in 2018. Businesses today use it in asset management and to track fleets for smoother logistics. They can obtain real-time reports on the movement of their trucks carrying supplies and also manage their field workers.
As per Forrester researchers², we will now see the emergence of an IoT-managed services market that will offer solutions for administration, monitoring and operation of IoT networks, devices and assets. Such offerings will target the ever-expanding range of smart devices, business networks and platforms to deploy tailored IoT solutions.
Business networking technologies are continually evolving, and there may be more on the horizon than what is visible to technology analysts now. At TTBS, we keep pace with IT and digitalisation to provide our clients with the best of connectivity and security solutions. Our team is monitoring the technology evolutions to help businesses maintain optimum networks that contribute to their consistent growth.