Cloud adoption is on the increase with IDC predicting that 60 percent of enterprise IT workloads will be off premise and that Cloud 2.0 is what 2018 will see evolve, writes ANDREW CRUISE, MD of Routed.
South Africa’s cloud adoption rate is on the increase and we are rapidly moving from cloud-first to a cloud-only methodology. The trend, which is rampant globally, is picking up speed as IDC predicts that 60 percent of enterprise IT workloads will be off premise and that Cloud 2.0 is what 2018 will see evolve.
The shakeout from Cloud 1.0 is where realism won through while many ideals and hype such as pure Public, pure Private and true Hybrid Cloud failed. As we start moving into a Cloud 2.0 methodology, we will bear witness to what industry is calling the ‘Pragmatic Cloud’. This will address the messy Hybrid-and-multi-Cloud that we often see as enterprises struggle and fail to achieve perfect approach.
The move from a cloud-first to a cloud-only strategy has established a new industry standard. There are now several clouds, both public and private and the challenge is going to be for vendors to make this cloud-shift easier than the migration to Cloud 1.0. A common operating ecosystem that enterprises can easily run is vital. This ecosystem needs to assist enterprises to run, manage, connect, and secure their applications across the various clouds within the same common environment.
But, Cloud 2.0 is not necessarily for newbies. As industry develops and demands, so cloud will need to adjust and deliver. IDC says that as cloud becomes more distributed, trusted, intelligent, and industry specialised, it will greatly expand.
Locally, the continent is already experiencing seismic shifts as a result of cloud and its impact on local IT strategies. While great strides have been made, exciting ones are afoot with cloud giants such as Microsoft Azure, Amazon Web Services and Google establishing local Points of Presence. This will change how IT works with constant innovation and new services launched almost weekly. It is here where it becomes clear that cloud is not just about a strategy, but is more and more about innovation.
Embracing Cloud 2.0 is about more than just assisting enterprises to reduce complexity, improve service delivery and reduce costs. Google’s belief is that where 1.0 enabled organisations to focus less on infrastructure, Cloud 2.0 will eliminate the need to focus on virtualisation, automation, and software. This will place a focus squarely on data and applications.
So, as with other technologies that are better aimed at user demands, Cloud 2.0 is poised to be cloud as we know it, but with improved capabilities that assist organisations to make better and more informed bottom line decisions.
2-in-1 devices may save PCs
Overall PC sales are expected to decline over the next four years, while 2-in-1 PCs are expected to grow over the same period.
Shipments of personal computing devices (PCDs), inclusive of traditional PCs and tablets, are expected to decline at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of -2.4% over the 2019-2023 forecast period. However, 2-in-1 devices (convertible PCs and detachable tablets) and ultraslim notebook PCs are expected to grow 5% collectively over the same period. According to a new forecast from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Personal Computing Device Tracker, overall PCD shipments will drop below 400 million in 2020, which would be the first time this has happened since 2010, the year the original iPad launched. The bright spots in this challenged category have been thin and light products and detachable tablets, which includes Apple’s iPad Pro devices and Microsoft’s Surface tablets.
“So far in 2019 we’ve seen some unexpected positive trends within the traditional PC market,” says Ryan Reith, program vice president with IDC’s Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers. “The commercial demand driven by the approaching end of support for Windows 7 was somewhat expected and still leaves room for growth in the second half of 2019. But we’ve also seen some surprising areas of consumer demand. Concerns about whether tariffs will drive consumer costs up has many vendors trying to put product into the channel early, so the real focus will be monitoring sell out for the remainder of the year and into 2020.”
IDC anticipates a splintering of the 2-in-1 category as Apple and Microsoft continue to push forward the detachable form factor while other PC vendors continue to promote convertible PCs. Looking ahead, IDC expects iOS detachables will capture almost one quarter of the 2-in-1 market throughout the forecast.
Jitesh Ubrani research manager for IDC’s Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers, says: “Apple’s support for a physical keyboard by adding a smart connector to the 2019 iPad and the launch of iPadOS will help to further cement detachables as a viable alternative to modern notebooks and convertibles.”
Outside of the growth from these modern form factors, the introduction of 5G will also play a role in the PCD market, although the ramp is expected to follow smartphones. IDC forecasts that by 2023 10% of detachable tablets will have built in 5G, which is in addition to another 29% running 4G. Meanwhile, the number of ultraslim and convertible notebooks with cellular connectivity is also expected to grow with a double-digit CAGR.
Personal Computing Device Forecast, 2019-2023 (shipments in millions)
|Desktop + Desktop Workstation||92.4||23.0%||77.5||21.2%||-4.3%|
|Notebook + Mobile Workstation||73.0||18.1%||47.7||13.0%||-10.1%|
|Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly Personal Computing Device Tracker, September 11, 2019|
* All figures represent forecast data.
- Traditional PCs include Desktop, Notebook, and Workstation.
- 2-in-1 devices are a category including convertible PCs and detachable tablets. Convertible PCs are notebook computers equipped with an integrated keyboard and display that can be used in either a traditional notebook configuration or a slate configuration. A detachable tablet meets all the criteria of a slate tablet but is designed to operate with a first-party keyboard designed specifically for the device.
Launching a website? Follow these SEO tips
By KATIE CHODOSH, content consultant at TopLine Comms
There is an abundance of small businesses in South Africa and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) could be the key to getting them off the ground. SEO isn’t easy, but it’s crucial for company growth. When done right, it can help businesses beat out their competitors (both on a national and global scale) and secure quality leads. As a B2B SEO agency, we spend a lot of time working with clients on their company’s SEO strategy (both in South Africa and the UK) and have seen them reap the benefits.
Launching a new website provides the perfect excuse to create an SEO strategy. As tempting as it is to get writing straight away, there are many elements to SEO that you need to consider before you put pen to paper (or finger to keyboard). We’ve managed plenty of site launches from an SEO perspective (including our own website, TopLine Film, earlier this year) which means that we have a blueprint to work from.Here’s what we’ve learned over the years.
Get ready to launch
There’s a lot of planning that goes into launching a websiteand you need to have a good understanding of SEO before itgoes live. Google’s resources on how search works and its SEO Starter Guide are good places to start.
Next is your keyword research. Keywords are what your audience are actively searching for and the terms that you want to rank for. The research itself will help you get a better understanding of your target market and might even get you thinking differently about your business. Moz has a good beginners guide to keywords and is also a great tool for carrying out keyword searches.
Once you’ve identified your keywords, you’ll want to sort them by bottom, middle and top of funnel. Those at the bottom are the closest to checking out (i.e. they already want your product). Those in the middle are looking for further information and those at the top are just browsing, generally looking for answers to a problem they’re having (their keywords tend to be questions). From there, you can plan your parent and child pages, as these should be based on bottom funnel keywords.
Then you can plan your site directory. You need to organise your website in a way that Google deems logical. It’s worth checking out Google’s own resources on site hierarchy to make sure you get it right.
After you’ve completed all these steps, you can think about drafting your website content.
Now that you’ve done all the preparation and have all your keywords to hand, you can get writing. The main things to consider are:
- Your key messages. Make sure relevant key messages are included throughout.
- Top, middle and bottom funnels. Remember those in the top, middle and bottom funnel, and consider whether your content is catering to them.
- Consider your target audience and their intent. Try to consider what the searchers are looking for, rather than just giving the information you want them to have. Focus on their pain – if they’re asking a question, answer it before moving on to your key message. You want your audience to feel satisfied with the information they’ve been given, not hoodwinked into purchasing your product.
- Content length. It’s worth looking at the current page one results for your target keyword to see what the content looks like so that you can write something better.
- Keywords. Make sure your target and secondary keywords are mentioned throughout (without being too forced – Google will punish you for that).
- Relevant details. There are certain details that you need for an SEO friendly page, including a title tag, header tagand meta description. All should include the target keyword.
- Your URL. Ideally, the URL will include the target keyword and be under 60 characters.
- Images and video. If you’re including images and video, help Google out by giving them descriptive captions, file names and surrounding text.
- Internal links. Make sure you’re linking to other pages on your website as often as possible. Also make sure to give those links a proper description (i.e. don’t say ‘if you want to see more, click here.’ Instead, say ‘click if you want to learn more about XYZ’.).
- A content calendar. Google will reward you for quality over quantity, so it’s worth spending time creating a content calendar of about two interesting blog posts a month.
Once you’ve got your content down, you can find a web agency and produce a brief or get ready to do it yourself. Either way, you’ll need to start tracking your keywords and doing technical spot checks with Search Console. SEO doesn’t stop the moment your website launches – it’s a long-term game that needs constant attention. But it’s all worth it when you start getting some quality leads. Keep at it and it could make a significant difference to your business.