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— Blog

By 2021, Nearly Everything Will Be In the Cloud

Fabienne Adam, Sr. Director of Global Product Management, Interconnection
May 3, 2018

The latest Cisco Global Cloud Index takes a look at the current climate of the cloud industry and makes some interesting predictions for what will happen in the next three years. We already know that cloud has become a game-changer for both enterprise and consumer businesses, but what really stands out is the pace at which it has become indispensable as a technology tool. The most recent Cisco Global Cloud Index (2016-2021) predicts that by 2021, 94% of all workloads will run in some form of cloud environment with dedicated servers existing for only the most unique, mission-critical situations.

Let’s take a look at some of the big takeaways.

Physical servers dedicated to a single workload will soon be a thing of the past. Instead, “we’re seeing one workload with multiple virtual machines and containers,” according to Cisco’s director of service provider forecasts and trends, Thomas Barnett. While this provides operational advantages, improved cost and security and simplicity have reduced barriers to adoption, making migration a “no brainer” decision in most cases.

Those workloads that don’t move to the cloud will stay in their environments for good reason. While the vast majority of workloads do benefit from a virtualized environment, some highly specialized applications, usually the most mission critical, require dedicated hardware and closely monitored 24/7 operation.

Cloud capabilities and the global data explosion go hand in hand. When you look at the rate of adoption expected by Cisco and look at what’s going on globally in terms of data generation, it starts to make a lot of sense. Cisco predicts that data center traffic will triple by 2021, with traffic in North America growing from 2.8 zettabytes per year to 8 zettabytes by 2021. The Asia/Pacific region will grow the fastest, from 2.1 zettabytes this year to 6.7 zettabytes in 2021.

When it comes to cloud, things are moving fast. If you would like to learn how partnering with Digital Realty can benefit your business, click here. If you would like to learn more about the Cisco Global Cloud Index, click here. To read more takeaways and analysis from Network World, click here.

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