2 common cloud computing predictions for 2021 are wrong

For some reason I’m on the list of every PR firm with a client that needs to have its predictions for the upcoming year heard. Mostly their guesses are obvious and unhelpful, such as “cloud computing will continue to grow” or “cloud security will continue to be a concern.” People are really going out on a limb.

However, I see a few predictions over and over again. I suspect that many out there in the cloud computing market are beginning to believe them, so I need to point out some realities that are often overlooked or misunderstood.

The rise of multicloud to become “cloud agnostic” is the most common—and most concerning—prediction. I especially worry if the perceived benefit is that being cloud agnostic refers to environments that are capable of operating with any public cloud provider with minimal disruptions to a business.

The idea seems compelling, considering that you can leverage best-of-breed public cloud computing services, such as choosing storage from two or more public cloud providers. Unfortunately, the reality is that applications and data must be localized to a specific cloud provider to be of true value to the business. This means that you’ll have to lock in to a cloud provider to take true advantage of that cloud provider’s capabilities.

So if you leverage multicloud, and at the same time attempt to be cloud agnostic, you’ll have to take the least common denominator approach to building applications and connecting data storage. This means that you won’t be optimized for any public cloud platform, or that you won’t run well anywhere.

I’ll also mention that you’re missing important native features such as security, governance, management and monitoring, etc. If you do use these features, that application and data won’t be cloud agnostic since they’re no longer portable between public cloud platforms because of the coupling of cloud services optimized for those platforms. No good cloud architect will take this approach given the negative trade-offs. I push back on them weekly.

Copyright © 2021 IDG Communications, Inc.

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