CloudInterviews

Without the Sheer Power of Cloud the Metaverse Cannot Materialise

Ali Shabdar, Regional Director for the Middle East and Africa at Zoho, says edge computing lowers the latency and need for bandwidth, compared to more traditional cloud computing scenarios

What trends do you foresee for Cloud Computing in 2022?
Focus on security, privacy, and protection of personal data leading to mandates and regulations for data hosting localization will be one of the macro trends. This will positively impact privacy-conscious markets while posing a business risk in other markets.

According to Gartner, by 2025, cloud-native platforms will serve as the foundation for more than 95% of new digital initiatives — up from less than 40% in 2021. Therefore, we can only see growth in the adoption of cloud computing in the new year.

Advancement in areas such as AI/ML (Artificial Intelligence/ Machine Learning), and AR/VR (Augmented Reality/ Virtual Reality) will bring more practical use cases to businesses across the board.

What sort of benefits does cloud computing bring to eCommerce stores and e-tailers?
The availability and scalability of cloud-based apps will make AI/ML-based hyper-personalization more accessible to e-tailers, while AR/VR is well underway to show a glimpse of how the consumers will shop in the near future.

Is edge computing helping shape up the cloud computing industry as a whole?
By bringing the processing power closer to the point the data is generated, edge computing lowers the latency and need for bandwidth, compared to more traditional cloud computing scenarios. This will make the cloud more efficient and accessible by addressing some of the key network-related issues, which in turn will improve the overall user experience among other benefits.

Do you believe serverless functions have a big part to play in creating new user experiences?
The direct impact of serverless functions (Functions as a Service, or FaaS) is more evident in the backend where it can reduce complexity, the DevOps efforts, and the cost of renting full-fledged servers and other resources in the cloud. This allows companies to be able to focus more on lowering Time-to-Market, improving performance, and boosting user experience for their customers.

Will combining AI with cloud services enable organizations to get the most out of both applications in a cost-effective way?
To make AI scale and be available to the masses, its powers need to be coupled with cloud computing, i.e. AI as a Service. Trends, such as Intelligence Automation and serverless AI are the result of merging these two areas.

With Metaverse becoming the “keyword” for 2022, do you believe the cloud has a major role to play here? What opportunities exist for both vendors and channel partners?
Without the sheer power of the cloud and its capabilities, the Metaverse cannot materialize. In fact, some of the companies behind the biggest projects in this space are themselves cloud providers or own private cloud infrastructures on a global scale.

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Chris Fernando

Chris N. Fernando is an experienced media professional with over two decades of journalistic experience. He is the Editor of Arabian Reseller magazine, the authoritative guide to the regional IT industry. Follow him on Twitter (@chris508) and Instagram (@chris2508).

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