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How cloud provides a robust foundation for emerging technologies like AI & ML?

By Manish Israni
May 12, 2021
5 min read
cloud services

As businesses thrive in today’s highly competitive and continuously evolving marketplace, innovation has become paramount for organisations across the spectrum of industry verticals. Changing customer expectations and the need for delivering top-notch customer experiences mandates organisations to reimagine business processes at every touch point.

Moreover, the Covid-19 pandemic has significantly transformed customer engagement, with digital platforms at the core. This omni-channel digital environment will continue to remain a crucial part of the post pandemic world. As customer interactions move to digital, a vast data pool is created from multiple touch points and at various stages of the customer journey. Future-ready organisations have realised the importance of this data to make informed decisions and enhance customer experience with personalised offerings.

In the backdrop of this disruption, organisations are increasingly looking at leveraging emerging technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), Machine Learning (ML), Data Analytics and Internet of Things (IoT) to take customer experience to the next level. For instance, application of AI-driven analytics is enabling organisations to derive meaningful insights from the data collected through customer engagements on digital platforms, thereby allowing them to better understand customer needs and provide tailored offerings.

Let’s understand how the focus on emerging technologies is impacting cloud adoption.

Cloud at Core – Backbone to Emerging Technologies

It’s important to note that innovating with emerging technologies requires an agile, flexible and highly scalable IT infrastructure, especially with the amount of data that is generated. Legacy systems and traditional on-premise IT infrastructure lack scalability, agility and compute power to test and deploy modern use cases around emerging technologies. However, cloud comes to the rescue with its agility, hyper scalability, and compute power, thereby providing a robust infrastructure backbone and enabling IT teams to scale up and scale down as needed, run business applications, and ensure quick roll out.

Future-ready organisations, as part of their digital transformation journeys, have embraced cloud as the core of their IT initiatives. According to a Gartner report by 2024, more than 45% of IT spending on system infrastructure, infrastructure software, application software and business process outsourcing will shift from traditional solutions to cloud.

The report further acknowledges that emerging technologies such as AI, IoT, edge computing and advanced data analytics are seen as the next wave of disruption; and cloud serves as the foundation for these technologies’ use cases for businesses.

These trends clearly indicate that cloud delivers an ideal environment for business applications based on emerging technologies and how a cloud-first strategy is the first step towards a digital-centric business model.

Let’s look at how these emerging technologies will shape cloud adoption trends.

  • Rise of Intelligent Businesses: The key to becoming an intelligent enterprise is data. Valuable insights derived from this data results into business intelligence and one of the biggest distinguishers of any organisation. In this direction, organisations need to run cutting-edge AI-ML based analytics over their data pool and garner insights. This is possible only on cloud as it provides immense storage and compute capabilities as and when required. Cloud enables end-to-end data analytics, from storage of data to generating actionable insights.
  • Automated Environment: The need for automating business processes has been more prevalent in the last one year. As remote working became the new reality, organisations were pushed to adopt automation, which would ensure seamless operations even in times of disruption. This also opens doors to enhanced workforce productivity as automation of time-consuming manual processes and allows them to focus on more important areas and innovation. Cloud’s ability to automate itself and scale up and scale down depending on the workloads significantly reduces the burden on IT teams.
  • Reimagining Cloud with AI: This novel technology is increasingly finding its place in digital transformation roadmaps of organisations. In order to fully enable an AI-driven business, it’s crucial that organisations make AI accessible to its entire workforce. Availability of AI toolsets on cloud allows employees to learn from the insights and make customer engagements more meaningful. Hence, a cloud infrastructure which is powered by AI will be among the primary considerations for organisations.
  • Cloud Enabled Hyper Connectivity: With developments in the areas of autonomous vehicles, smart city infrastructure, 5G and IoT enabled intelligent Edge, the realms of cloud are expanding beyond mere availability. Cloud is the platform that makes reality of a hyper-connected world possible as it forms the foundation where different technologies connect and talk to each other. Smart cities’ integrated command and control centres leverage the power of cloud enabled dashboards to monitor and analyse data coming from a vast network of IoT devices deployed across cities. As 5G becomes a reality, there will be an influx of new datasets which will reside and get analysed on cloud. Similarly, as more and more people get connected on IoT devices, organisations will have to prepare their cloud infrastructure with the greater computation capabilities.

Innovations Bringing Cloud at the Center

In a post-Pandemic world, organisations will continue to innovate as part of their digital transformation roadmap and emerging technologies will continue to define their efforts. In line with this direction, IT leaders will focus on building a cloud infrastructure that equips their business with the tools and capabilities needed to bring the best out of technologies such as AI, ML, 5G, data analytics, and IoT among others.

Another Gartner predicts that the rapid pace of innovation in cloud infrastructure and platform services (CIPS) makes cloud the de facto platform for new digital services and existing traditional workloads alike, which is why 40% or all enterprise workloads will be deployed in CIPS by 2023, up from only 20% in 2020.

As observed above, with more and more workloads moving to cloud platforms and everything transitioning to as-a-service, cloud adoption will be redefined by its capabilities to perform intelligent tasks and serve as a one-stop platform where all technologies connect with each other seamlessly and enable a truly modern digital experience for all stakeholders.

Manish Israni
Head of IT Operations & CIO

Manish Israni heads IT Operations & Engineering. He has over 25 years of experience in IT Infrastructure and Hyperscale Data Centers for ITES, BFSI and Telecom industries. He comes with rich and valuable experience in strategising and delivering innovative managed IT services. He is responsible for 24X7 IT operations and overseeing delivery of complex IT solutions.

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