SDN to help drive enterprise IT transformation in 2018

Verizon Enterprise Solutions has named seven trends expected to drive enterprise IT transformation in 2018 (image denizbayram / iStockPhoto)

Software-defined networking (SDN), the internet of things (IoT) and artificial intelligence (AI) hitting the mainstream will be among the key trends driving enterprise IT transformation worldwide in 2018, Verizon Enterprise Solutions has predicted.

The IT service provider has published a list of seven enterprise technology trends considered most likely to impact businesses and governments next year.

“While the term ‘digital transformation’ may be one of the most overused phrases in technology, there is no doubt that every executive we speak with thinks about transformative technology as a way to stay competitive and relevant. This is also the reason why many of our customers look at Hong Kong as the favorable choice to set up their regional hub." said Helen Wong, director, network product technology & strategy, Asia Pacific, Verizon. "In 2018, we foresee that many organizations will focus their transformational efforts on security, digital collaboration and AI to further enhance customer experience." 

First, with SDN deployments now live worldwide, companies are expected to turn their attention to utilizing SDN to achieve application-aware networking, which will involve managing the performance, capabilities and security of applications to make the most of bandwidth.

On the security front, with the scale of threats growing exponentially, Verizon expects security to be increasingly embedded into business platforms and support every business operation.

Verizon has also predicted that 2018 will be the year when digital communications technologies start to transform workplace collaboration, with SDN facilitating intelligent data management and multi-platform call routing for more effective collaboration.

The IoT is meanwhile expected to become part of the fabric of an organization, and that AI and robotics will be used to offer intelligent automation of managed IoT deployments consisting of large numbers of devices.

With consumers becoming increasingly aware of the power of their data and the EU's GDPR close to coming into effect, Verizon also believes that consumers will take increasing control of their digital experience and become choosier over which companies they will share their data with.

For governments, seamless, secure connections across rapidly deployable public safety networks will be a critical focus in 2018, Verizon said.

Finally, Verizon expects a growing focus on simplifying enterprise operations, for example by focusing on delivering key business outcomes and outsourcing non-core outcomes to key providers.

“Transformation continues to be a focus for our global customer base, but it can be a difficult journey to undertake – particularly given the ongoing global skills shortage in key enterprise technology areas,” Verizon Enterprise Solutions president George Fischer said.

“Verizon is entering 2018 with a clear understanding of what organizations need to do to really change their game, and how we can help them.”

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