Economic stress, significant demographic changes, globalisation and increased mobile services are all influences that will shape how cloud computing will be used and developed over the next 10-20 years. These are the findings in a major report from Fujitsu which comes up with some surprising benefits to current global problems.

Not least is this feeback: “The recession will generate lasting social benefits. People pull together in adversity, with more social contact replacing retail consumption. While this will be difficult for retailers we will get a stronger, better networked society that forces changes in attitudes towards IT. As a result, we will see increasing acceptance of IT-based tools such as videoconferencing.”

This will increase the mobile use of services, increasing familiarity with smartphones and apps, and create more demand for cloud services.

Other findings are:

  • Economic stress will stimulate reduction of waste and eradication of inefficient practices. An IT renaissance will occur, as companies tackle and replace bloated micromanagement systems. We will discover better ways of doing things. Leaner companies will be better placed to survive, and will provide better services at better prices.
  • In the background will be demographic changes such as ageing, immigration, single person households and children staying longer with their parents. A new trend is remigration, where people return to their ancestral homelands as conditions there improve. Indians leaving the UK are leaving large holes in the IT skill base that are hard to fill with home grown staff. Meanwhile, intergenerational conflict will worsen as young people blame their parents’ generation for the problems. Many of the most talented may emigrate too.
  • Globalisation will still increase in the next decade, but most of its impacts have already been felt, and it will be less important than the recomposition of industry. As biotech, nanotech and IT converge and their effects ripple through every industry, a great deal of fragmentation and reassembly of corporate functions and systems will result. Many people will work frequently with others in distant locations, causing great growth in network traffic and high demand for the most effective collaboration tools.