Insights

Tech Predictions 2021 – what’s going up, what’s coming down?

11 December 2020

It’s become a tradition for me to share my Tech Predictions 2021 – looking at what technology I believe will see growing popularity over the next 12 months or so, and what we’ll be seeing going down company wish lists – or even disappearing completely. 

2020 ripped up the rulebook across the board but it brought with it some interesting shifts in what technology is being consumed by organisations. And that’s definitely influenced what technology I see at the top of the priority list for 2021 and my overall Tech Predictions 2021. 

So here are my Tech Predictions 2021… 

Firstly – Tech Going Up:

Widespread adoption of Virtual Desktop Infrastructure (VDI):

This is sometimes referred to as VDI, desktop virtualisation or Desktop-as-a-Service. As I mentioned, Covid-19 has dramatically changed operations in 2020. Organisations have had to embrace a flexible workforce and there are no signs of that changing in 2021. We’ve seen a cultural shift in the way we work and a number of organisations have already made the move to adopt VDI technology as part of their flexible working and business continuity plans.

The great thing about VDI is that it’s a service which enables any user, from any device, to connect securely to an organisation’s environment. This brings other benefits where a company will no longer need to manage high spec corporate devices and all of the cost savings associated with that. WIth the air gap that accessing VDI creates, organisations are also able to protect their network and ecosystem from cyber attacks and viruses from end user devices. I believe this will become the de facto mechanism for people to work and connect in from in 2021. 

Security vendors will be porting their IP to be able to use in public cloud:

I’ve already started to see some slow progress in the move to this. I believe that more technology vendors will accelerate the move to abstracting some of their Intellectual Property (IP) and making it available in the cloud. For example, Cloud Gateway partner Fortinet has allowed the IPS and IDS signatures and engines to be abstracted and actually built into cloud native constructs. Those can now be used natively so an organisation doesn’t need to worry about building their own network, virtual appliances and other platforms and environments. 

There’s a huge benefit to the vendors in doing this as they can protect their revenues as more and more organisations move to cloud. The cloud providers also are able to offer long standing security intelligence that’s trusted. 

Egressing to the internet via cloud:

With the new technology – or new architecture – that we’ll be seeing adopted from next year, I believe we’ll see more organisations using cloud to egress to the internet. What this means is that connectivity from the organisation’s estate to the cloud is easier and far more scalable. Companies are then able to build their end user compute egress internet services in the cloud for faster time to market.

The main appeal of this is the visibility, agility and scalability benefits that it brings and that the heavy lifting is done by the cloud service provider (CSP).

And… Tech Going Down: 

Public Services Network (PSN):

Central and local government departments and services have been trying to move off of the PSN for the last 2-3 years. Government Digital Service (GDS) released an update to the Future Networks for Government (FN4G) Programme in September 2019 which supports the public sector in moving away from PSN. Despite the disruption caused by Covid-19 – and in some cases because of – we’ve seen some momentum behind this move. 

Previously the move has been quite painstaking with lots of moving parts to manage. With more vendors like Cloud Gateway supporting organisations by bridging the gap between moving from the PSN to Internet First and Cloud First strategies, there’ll be an acceleration in the PSN closedown next year. 

Dedicated Circuits:

Another technology I’m going to see going down, alongside using the internet as WAN and some of the SD-WAN movements, is the reduction in dedicated circuits. So for example, in the traditional old world we would be having dedicated circuits delivered per site. Now we’re gonna see more and more using the internet as transit and using secure VPN tunnels across the internet to augment SD-WAN offerings. 

People will start to use and become familiar with the internet as transit. There are a myriad of ways to securely use the biggest network in the world – the internet!

Do you agree with my tech predictions 2021 or would you have added or changed any of these? Come back at the end of 2021 to see if I’m right or if I’ve been proved wrong and have to eat a large helping of humble pie! 

cloud computing
cloud connectivity
Cloud First
Cloud networking
Emerging technology
VDI
Neil Briscoe