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No kick-off to the 2012 New Year would be complete without a few Cloud predictions from our own Nostradamus of Cloud, Dr. Cloud. As usual, Dr. Cloud’s predictions weigh the emerging technologies, regulatory issues, social perceptions, business economics, likely roadmaps based on the acquisition patterns of major contenders, customer feedback, and of course the intensive collaboration around dinStack – as fueled by our 24 member coalition of partners like Microsoft, NetApp, Quest Software,  Vyatta, Xsigo Systems and more.

#1 — The Cloud’s kevlar bubble will only get BIGGER.

Cloud venture capital funding and acquisitions will continue to rise in 2012. Large national and international VARs, telecom carriers, major technology oriented retailers, and large software companies will continue to grapple over their turf in the Clouds. 2011 was about acquiring table stakes to the game as many players didn’t have anything in the Cloud.  2012 will get even wilder as companies armed with billions of dollars find it even harder to buy both the technologies and the delivery platforms (Cloud providers) they need to promote each of their own unique agendas in the Cloud.
A few examples are: Best Buy bought Mindshift, Citrix bought, Dimension Data bought OpSource, Verizon bought Terremark, and the list goes on!   Who knows, maybe dinCloud will be on that list someday as we’ve developed a Cloud Management tool that far exceeds (which fetched $200M!) as well as a delivery platform that links our tool to hosted virtual servers, desktops, apps, storage, voice, video and more, all of which we provide worldwide via one of 98 datacenters in both private and public cloud environments. Either way you cut it, being in Cloud has never been more exciting or more rewarding! Unlike the dot com boom that went dot bomb, Cloud has the benefit of solid business models, real-use cases, and monthly recurring revenue. It’s here to stay! This bubble is made of Kevlar.

#2 — Cloud will be the savior for mobile device adoption.

Cloud will be the killer app for the adoption of mobility devices by CIO’s and consumers alike. Keeping data securely in the cloud frees CIO’s from the daunting task of figuring out how to secure an increasing array of new mobile devices, as well as gives consumers the ability to change between devices frequently while maintaining user settings, apps, data and more.  Whether it’s dinCloud’s HVD or Apple’s iCloud, users will continue to be spoiled with features and functionality in 2012, only possible in the Cloud.

#3 — Cloud design will shift to accommodate innovation & concerns.

The largest multi-tenant shared Clouds, despite reaching $1B/year in revenue, will plateau and decline toward the end of 2012 as Cloud Providers who offer secure hybrid clouds atop granular dedicated infrastructures prevail.  While these current multi-tenant shared clouds offer a cheap solution (which may become known as “disposable cloud”), serious mission critical workloads that require isolation both at a physical and a virtual level to meet compliance, security, licensing, customization, and fast adoption of new technologies will require Clouds that can deliver a dedicated experience in a hybrid model, that bridges the gap between private/public clouds transparently.  dinCloud fits the latter model, so naturally I’m a bit biased, but if you think about it you’ll know why this makes a lot of sense as time goes on.

#4 — Standards will remain elusive in 2012 as Cloud innovation skyrockets.

There will be no major wide spread standards adopted in Cloud for 2012.  Sorry! Cloud embodies a wide range of technologies each of which is growing at an exponential rate while simultaneously learning how to collaborate with each other.  Meanwhile, everything from how various Cloud building blocks are architected as well as the per user per month pricing models they will use are all in flux. After a flurry of innovation, de facto standards and best practices methodologies will begin to emerge, but that’s a ways off as each horse in the race right now is differentiating itself with ridiculously cool but often a proprietary plethora of features.  But take heart, mindful of past mistakes, almost all Cloud players are engaged in extensible open API’s, open source components, and collaborating with a wider like-minded eco-system of alliance partners to insure success. dinStack and the dinStack Coalition members are one example of this.

#5 — Virtual Desktops Will Support 3D Graphics & VOIP – even over the WAN!

Ok well this one isn’t so much a prediction as a promise: in January/February 2012 we’ll kick off our latest Microsoft approved virtual desktop, dinHVD2.  It’ll do things like Auto CAD, 3D graphics from any application, VOIP w/Skype & Microsoft Lync, and you can even play World of Warcraft – all over the WAN – on a hosted virtual desktop (“HVD”).  dinCloud builds all this in either our dedicated public cloud (your own virtual private datacenter or “vpDC”) or in your own datacenter via a private cloud – you pick!  dinHVD gen 1 is already used by thousands  of users (attorneys, insurance firms, major retailers, doctor’s offices, you name it — they are on dinCloud!) worldwide every single day (I’m writing this post on my dinHVD). Surfing 1080p videos on up to 6 screens was pretty cool, as is supporting Mac, iPAD, Android and Linux…but we’re taking it up a few notches.  Our dinStack coalition partners are working with Microsoft on things like native infiniband in Server8, tons of features in Windows8, and even a new transport protocol (Netapp w/SMB2.2 on Microsoft Windows8/Server8) etc. We’re on the cutting edge, and we intend to stay there throughout 2012.
To find out more about our view of everything Cloud, be sure to visit today!  There you can also “Ask Dr. Cloud” what he thinks on any Cloud topic.