Sunday, 3 September 2017 ehdf

Vision 2017

The Evolving Regional Technology Landscape

The regional technology market will experience exponential growth in 2017 and beyond due to events such as Dubai’s Expo 2020, Qatar World Cup 2022, Saudi Vision 2030 and other government initiatives that will drive demand for the latest technologies.

With over 25 million visitors expected to visit Dubai for the World Expo 2020, the event promises to be a major opportunity for business and IT development. In fact, it has opened up a number of avenues which will shape the technology trends in the region for the next few years. While the city is already witnessing smart infrastructure being built based on the latest and cutting edge technology, the government now aspires to transform the Emirate into a smart city within the next few years. This would ensure better efficiency and an enhanced working environment for the tourists, international investors and new businesses during the Expo.

The announcement to transform the region into a smart city led to a boom in the technology sector. With the huge number of tourists and investors coming to the UAE, there will be a large influx of data, which will need greater infrastructure planning. Businesses will have to manage this large amount of information in the most organized way. To ensure the same, investing in additional storage and network capacity would be required. In summary, we believe that the advancement of technology will take a new meaning in the near future as the UAE aims to transform into a major technological hub not just within the region, but at a global level.

The Qatar World Cup 2022 will open up similar avenues, as governments and companies continue to invest in IT solutions for smart city infrastructure development, effective data storage and backup systems.

Digital transformation has become the central strategy of the Saudi Vision 2030 program, with Saudi companies increasingly adapting themselves to be part of this vision program.

Emerging technologies

1. Data centers in the region will continue to evolve in 2017 to meet current and future business requirements. Data centers are going through many changes as businesses are shifting their focus to issues such as speed of implementation, flexibility, agility, efficiency, scalability and security.

2. Cloud computing is one of the main technologies driving the transformation of data centers as it facilitates faster business operations. Cloud offers organizations the flexibility to scale their infrastructure capacity on demand. With the continuing trend of cloud computing, data centers are being transformed to utilize these new technologies to enhance their performance. Moving forward, we will witness dramatic changes in the structure, software and control processes of data centers.

3. Trends such as automation, virtualisation, software-defined applications and infrastructure, IoT, BYOD etc. are driving a change in data centers. Apart from looking at new technologies to effectively manage data center growth, organizations are also considering options such as consolidation, colocation and outsourcing their data centers.

4. The Managed services market in the Middle East is seeing a surge as enterprises look to sidestep the need for investment in ICT infrastructure and skills that are an expensive distraction from their core business. From network and data center management services to disaster recovery, storage and backup, server management, security and IT support, it is possible to offload the day-to-day provision of significant chunks of the IT function, liberating financial and human resources to focus on productivity and efficiency.

Evolving customer demands

Global connectivity is increasing and the demand for ICT is growing. In today’s business environment, organizations need to adopt new technologies in order to expand their operations and improve productivity and customer experience. Even small to mid-size organizations will not be able to function, let alone scale-up their businesses without a strong IT infrastructure to support their growth. Many companies do not have the required resources to support a dedicated in-house IT team. Faced with mounting costs and an increasingly complex IT environment to manage, organizations in the Middle East are now more than ever looking at Managed Services as an alternative to manage and expand their IT infrastructures.

Security, 24/7 availability and Service Level Agreements are some of the deciding factors when organizations chose a MSP. In order to bridge the gap, MSPs must ensure best-in-breed security infrastructure along with robust practices with 24/7 monitoring and management. Moreover, they must understand that the concept of one-size-fits-all is not conducive to the wider range of needs of different industries. They must work towards building solutions to suit the individual needs of their customers.

Most organizations today are looking to leverage the benefits of cloud computing and their existing IT systems to increase business productivity. Cloud adoption in the Middle East is growing significantly as enterprises are seeing tremendous value in having a scalable and flexible pool of resources at their fingertips. The assurance of lower IT costs and scalability has drawn IT decision makers to move their business-critical data and applications to the cloud.

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