2020 Data Centre trends you need to know
Data centres have changed rapidly over the past 10-15 years, and would be unrecognisable today. Their transformation is not slowing down either and most data centres as we know them today will have shut down by 2025.
So what can we expect the futuristic data centres to look like and what trends can we expect to see?
Hybrid Data Centres
Hybrid data centres are comprised of a mixture of computing and storage environments. Put simply they will be able to offer a centralised cloud system, providing power and storage to any business. This mixture of physical data centres and private and/or public clouds means that any business will be able to adapt and change quickly in the turbulent market.
Seeing as hybrid data centres can be extremely complex, the importance of security has elevated. Technologies such as firewalls and micro-segmented services are becoming increasingly important in the data centre industry.
However, the unprecedented times brought about by COVID-19 have also called for an increased level in security. As most companies switched to online platforms, allowing employees to work from home, the level of cyber security threats rose to an all time high.
According to the 2020 Vulnerability and Threat Trends Report by Sky Box Security, the level of ransomware and security threats more than doubled at the beginning of the global pandemic.
Colocation centres or ‘carrier hotels’ are data centres where space and equipment, among other things, are available to rent out. The idea of renting space at another company's data centre may have once seemed absurd. However, recently, this trend has become increasingly popular.
These centres boast many benefits for organisations that are willing to use them. The cost of renting out space at a colocation centre is astronomically lower than the cost of buying your own facility.
Another added advantage is the need for less staff. Most technical issues will be dealt with by on site hired staff, giving renting organisations one less issue to worry about. Companies have the choice of where they geographically want to rent spaces, making them as close as possible to the organisation's base.
The future of data centres seems bright, especially with the ever growing push for companies and services to solely work remotely and online. These are just some of the trends at the forefront of the data centre industry in 2020. But things are sure to change as digital platforms and technologies progress.
Schneider Electric reveals new IT Innovation report
Schneider Electric has released a new IT innovations report titled “Digital Economy and Climate Impact”, with the aim of gaining an understanding of how digitised and smart applications will be powered in the future. The company says that the report predicts that IT sector-related electricity demand is expected to increase by almost 50% by 2030.
Despite this, the report also shows that emissions would not increase by more than 26% by the same year, following the decarbonisation of the electricity system. In an attempt to reduce this rise in emissions the Schneider Electric TM Sustainability Research Institute recommends continued efforts in achieving efficiencies on the IT and energy sides at both the component and system levels.
The report highlights how the rise of edge computing technologies require a “specific focus” due to these systems being less efficient than hyperscale data centres. “When the world locked down, it also logged on and internet traffic soared,” said Pankaj Sharma, EVP, Secure Power, Schneider Electric.
“It’s misleading to assume that digital activity will inevitably result in a deeply problematic increase in CO2 emissions. The analysis from the Schneider Electric Sustainability Institute puts to rest many of the worst-case scenario claims predicting IT-related electricity use will double every five years. That said, as an industry, we must remain vigilant in finding new sources of sustainability gains while ensuring resiliency as digital keeps life moving forward”, he added.
As well as the release of the report, Schneider Electric also announced several updates to its EcoStruxure IT data center infrastructure management software, Galaxy VL 3-phase uninterruptable power supply (UPS), introducing an industry-leading single-phase UPS, the APC™ Smart-UPS™ Ultra. All introductions are designed to advance the industry forward in meeting sustainability goals while increasing the resiliency of IT and data centre infrastructure, the company said.
Managing hybrid data center and edge IT environments
Also showcased in Schneider Electric’s report are the increasing demands on digital consumption. According to the company, these create a more complex hybrid environment inclusive of enterprise, cloud, and edge data centres. Addressing the unique management challenges of a hybrid IT environment, Schneider Electric has announced updates to its EcoStruxure IT software to increase efficiency and resiliency, including:
- Increased remote management capabilities: New granular remote device configuration features enable users to change configurations on one or more devices – including the new Galaxy VL and APC Smart-UPS Ultra single-phase UPS units – from one centralised platform with EcoStruxure IT Expert. This update, combined with previously released software insights on device security health, enables the user to identify faulty devices or configurations and address them in a matter of clicks, keeping their hybrid IT environment secure.
- Improved environmental monitoring: Environmental monitoring systems ensure users have eyes and ears on data centre and IT deployments from anywhere, anytime. With this update, users can push mass configurations remotely for NetBotz cameras 750 and 755 quickly and efficiently increasing security across the critical infrastructure.
- Enhanced remote capacity modeling and planning: With EcoStruxure IT Advisor’s new capabilities, users can remotely compare an unlimited number of racks and easily identify available capacity, view what assets are deployed and their dependencies.
Sharma concluded: “Schneider Electric has been focused on sustainability for the past 15 years and was recently named the most sustainable corporation in the world. We have embraced the mindset that future innovation will deliver better efficiency across the broader connectivity landscape. By making smart intentional choices, our industry can help mitigate how much electricity and emissions result from the rising appetite for digital technologies”.