Three Predictions for Connectivity in 2020


1 January 2020

Over the past few years, we’ve seen the connectivity sector grow significantly, particularly with a rise in the use of mobile technology and connected devices. In fact, recent reports predict that the wireless connectivity market will grow at a CAGR of roughly 13.4 percent over a five year period, from $51 billion in 2018 to $95.7 billion by 2023. As part of this anticipated growth, we can expect to see some changes to the technology we know today, as well as the emergence of progress in new areas.

Let’s take a look at some of the connectivity trends I expect we’ll see over the next 12 months:

1. Rewind back to the basics

While enterprises are actively embracing next-gen technology, we often see them putting the cart before the horse in doing so. There is value in adopting new technologies in its early stages, but next year, I expect we’ll see enterprises prioritising going back to the basics when it comes to their enterprise IT.

Having the foundational infrastructure up to par is critical before an enterprise can begin to think about how they’ll leverage trendy tech, such as artificial intelligence or the Internet of Things. To make the most of these innovations, enterprises must prioritise building diversity and resilience into their networks and ensuring everything under the lid is running seamlessly.

2. Entering new territories  

As organisations increasingly seek to ensure better user experiences by getting their data as close to end-users as possible, I expect we’ll see new data centre hubs begin to emerge. In addition to continued investments in existing hubs, new data centre builds will start to pop up in once overlooked locations, particularly across Eastern Europe.

What do data centre operators need to be mindful of as they expand into new territories? Meaningful engagement with local authorities is key to securing political support in the approval of permits. They must also focus on the planning of power to ensure long term customer demand can be met. Finally, data centre providers will need to collaborate with the local digital and connectivity communities to develop and execute on an integrated digital vision for the city.

3. New subsea cable routes

The majority of today’s existing subsea cable routes land in similar locations – and with an increase in volume of content flowing through these systems, there is now a need to build systems that add to the overall resilience of network infrastructure. That’s why next year, we’ll see new subsea cables become active that provide new approaches to how traffic between the Americas and Europe, in particular, is transported. 

For example, Aqua Comms will be landing its newest cable, the America Europe Connect-2 (AEC-2) in Interxion’s Copenhagen data centre. AEC-2 (also known as HAVFRUE), is a new transatlantic cable project from the US to Europe landing in Denmark, which will provide diversity from subsea cable systems that have traditionally landed in the UK or Northern France. In general, new subsea cables help ensure greater resilience in the networks that carriers and content platforms operate in, making the underlying international infrastructure of the internet more robust.

Making connections

In Summary, In 2020 we’ll see the connectivity sector continue to grow, but this growth will be shaped by fundamental drivers – the need to address new emerging hubs will see network expansions, and throughout the connectivity landscape there will be an increasing requirement to demonstrate diversity and resilience in network topology.  Carrier-neutral data centres are enablers of these industry trends, and so their strategic importance to the connectivity sector will be compounded.

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