2011 – Cyberwarfare, cyber-espionage and a New Microsoft CEO?
We're nearly at the end of 2010, and Nancy Weil of CIO is looking ahead to 2011, with her roundup of '10 IT-Related Predictions for 2011.'
1. Firstly, 2011 will be "the year of the tablet," although tablets will be primarily used for entertainment purposes, rather than work. She predicts an increase in games that are too complex for smartphones and mobile devices, but which are perfectly suited to the tablet. And bad news for Android fans: she predicts that Android-based tablets will be competitive, but will not catch up with the iPad in 2011.
2. 2011 will also be the year of the acquisition, according to Weil. Oracle will purchase on-demand software vendor Salesforce.com. Oracle will gain "tens of thousands" of small to medium-size companies who are customers of Salesforce.com's customer relationship management software, and Oracle ownership will give Salesforce.com greater cachet in the larger enterprises.
3. Continuing the acquisition theme, IBM or HP will buy SAP. Oracle are busy building integrated systems from its own servers, databases and hardware, and Weil predicts IBM and HP may have to play Oracle at their own game in order to stay competitive.
4. Enterprises will use flash memory. Barry Eggers, managing director of Lightspeed Venture Partners, cites the declining costs of flash memory and its speed advantages, as a reason why 2011 will see a growth in this market within the enterprise.
5. The US Department of Justice will continue pursuing possible charges against Julian Assange related to WikiLeaks, but he will not be charged and WikiLeaks will continue.
6. Cyberwarfare will become a reality, and cyber-espionage will occur throughout 2011.
7. Startups will play an important role in the continuing migration of data to the cloud. Cloud computing will also bring about increased connectivity, as vendors use the cloud to turn isolated products into connected products.
8. Enterprises and their management teams will overcome their misgivings, and have a social-media presence. Not-for-profit organisations will also increasingly utilise social media. However, there's a dark side to social media in 2011, with misuses of private data and increased efficiency when it comes to encouraging users to play online games. Not signed up to FarmVille yet? "Resistance is futile," writes Weil.
9. The U.S Congress will not pass anymore tech-related legislation, while the Federal Communications Commissions will be sued "by at least one midlevel ISP, backed by conservative groups that want the government to keep its hands off the Internet."
10. After wrongly predicting that Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz leave the company in 2010, Weil has predicted that this year will see Microsoft CEO leave his position, due to pressure from shareholders and a recent sell-off of Microsoft stock.