Three IT predictions for 2013

It's that time of year again. At IT World, we're all coming up with our own IT forecasts for 2013. Unlike some others, I'm not going to bother trying to predict whether RIM will take off or go into a tailspin next year. Instead, I'm going to stick to some wider and less controversial trends and make some rather low-risk wagers.
Here they are:
1) “Hybrid” clouds dominate the enterprise market

It’s already happened, to a certain extent, but I expect the popularity of the model to increase dramatically as larger companies realize that that a combination of public and private cloud services suits them best. That’s to say, managed private clouds and mixed private/public deployments will become the de facto model for most enterprise cloud computing.

Meanwhile, barebones multi-tenant public clouds will increasingly be seen as a small business/consumer product and on-premise private clouds recognized as a more or less a niche offering for certain enterprises.

2) Mobile malware goes critical

We’ve talked about a lot about this over the past year, but despite dire warnings it hasn’t really managed to hurt us yet: Malware on mobile devices.  But in 2013, I expect we’ll start to feel some aching, chronic pain as hackers step up their efforts in a target-rich environment that’s growing ever larger.

I also predict users will become much more wary and install anti-malware apps on their phones and tablets in greater numbers.

3) Open-source becomes a household word

In the consumer space, the various Linux distributions (particularly Ubuntu) are starting to become real alternatives to proprietary systems. And for enterprises, the same thing is happening with open technologies like OpenStack, NoSQL, Hadoop and the R statistical modeling language.

But the difference is that platforms like Hadoop have to be fine-tuned somewhat to work at the enterprise level. So, I expect that we’ll see big vendors (like IBM, HP, Oracle and SAS) embracing these technologies to a greater extent and offering more of their own tweaks. We’ll also see more small companies with open-source expertise enter the fray to compete with the likes of Revolution, MapR and Hortonworks.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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