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Data will be the business of 2017

Rick Scurfield, President, NetApp APAC | Jan. 31, 2017
With data so valuable to success, it has become the new currency of the digital age and has the potential to reshape every facet of the enterprise from business models to technology and user expectations.

This vendor-written piece has been edited by Executive Networks Media to eliminate product promotion, but readers should note it will likely favour the submitter's approach.

Data Is the New Currency

The explosion of data in today's digital economy has resulted in a fundamental shift from using data to run the business to recognizing that data is the business. With data so valuable to success, it has become the new currency of the digital age and has the potential to reshape every facet of the enterprise from business models to technology and user expectations. We've seen this in the emergence of companies like Uber and Airbnb, which are built around the control of a network of resources. To make things even more interesting, we continue to see new types of data that enterprises didn't used to think about collecting. For example, whereas we used to store and share only critical transactional data, we now store mass amounts of ancillary data surrounding transactions for deep analysis. This can include click stream data and even data about weather and other external factors that provide market insight.

New Models Take Hold

The focus on data requires a universe of services that can work together to solve critical problems of all types. This will require the support of platforms and an ecosystem of providers and developers that enables them. In this context, the platform model carries intrinsic value in its ability to integrate and simplify the delivery of services. A good example of this is Amazon Web Services, which continues to evolve into a richer and richer set of services all the time. Platforms create a virtuous cycle as does a good flea market: people go there to buy because that's where people are selling; sellers go there to sell because that's where the buyers are. As access to critical skills is becoming more challenging, broad-based platforms allow a more fluid flow of talent. People with specialized skills are attracted to projects they find interesting and the ubiquity of common platforms and tools makes it easier to engage their interests.

The Cloud as Catalyst and Accelerator

More organizations have been deploying cloud technologies to support their data requirements. The ready availability of cloud-based services provides easy access to the infrastructure needed to support innovation because it has dramatically lowered barriers to entry: with a credit card and an AWS account, new projects can be set up in a day and operate on a pay-as-you-go basis. An example of this is Cloud Sync Service, which was built by six engineers in six months with no capex infrastructure. New usage-based consumption models, based on Platform as a Service combined with new scale, compliance and data protection offerings, are making cloud infrastructure more essential for businesses of all sizes.

 

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