2020 data centre trends to watch

Rise of the edge: Keeping content closer to the consumer

One of the most radical changes to the data centre solutions landscape in recent years is the advent of edge computing. Having seen the move away from premise-based data hosted at the edge 10 years ago, today’s edge computing popularity is now reversing the trend.

Characterised by smaller data centres located at the local “edge” of a network, edge computing has fast become a popular choice for businesses who require data processing and handling in real-time.

By being physically closer to the point of data creation (than a centralised data centre in another state or territory), edge computing helps to improve performance and operational efficiency, while offering extremely low latency.

Crowd device usage

According to analysts from IDC, more than 50 per cent of new enterprise infrastructure deployments will be edge in the next three years, up from the current figure of less than 10 per cent. By 2024, the number of edge apps is projected to increase 800 per cent.

Contributing to this rapid growth are advancements like 5G and the ever-increasing number of connected IoT devices.

One question that continues to be raised, however, is whether edge data centres can keep up with the high security standards set by their larger, centralised competitors.

Hyperscale: Will only grow in might and power

As the name suggests, hyperscale refers to facilities and infrastructure that provide for immense scale in cloud computing.

Typically, hyperscale operators are building facilities to accommodate the enterprise cloud giants like Amazon, Google and Alibaba, who, collectively, have opened data centres in 15 countries over the past year.

The flourishing hyperscale market is tipped to reach USD 124 billion by 2025, up from USD 24 billion in 2007. A projected CAGR of 26.3 per cent for the period 2018-2025 (Verified Market Intelligence).

As it is purpose-built for scale, high performance and up-time, hyperscale is an attractive proposition for businesses with growing cloud consumption and storage needs.

Cloud consumption: People will adopt a whole lot more cloud

Far from slowing down, the global public cloud service market is predicted to reach $266 billion by 2020 (Gartner) – a projected growth of 17.3 per cent since 2018.

Given the flexibility of hybrid models, many companies are now choosing to combine public and private cloud solutions – some 69% of companies according to the Rightscale State of the Cloud 2019 Report.

However, as the demand for edge computing and hyperscale data centres grows, this figure will continue to change, as enterprises move to more distributed technology structures.

IoT connected network

High-performance networks will reign supreme

Whatever the cloud solution mix, the signs are clear that utilising every available avenue to ensure customers and business applications benefit from real-time data processing is paramount.

This means that data centre providers who get the advantage will be those who nail the critical elements of high-performance computing: speed, connectivity, latency and security.

  • With growing cloud demand, the speed consumers require data processing and the sheer volume of information being processed, speed remains a critical delivery factor for data centre providers. The introduction of 5G, which will process data ten times faster than 4G networks, the growing popularity of gigabit cities (purpose-built fibre networks with unlimited bandwidth and gigabit speed), and the emergence of IoT (Internet of Things) and associated products will further drive these requirements.
  • Connectivity is also still king. Data centres must be equipped with the best structured cabling solutions to ensure that connectivity isn’t compromised.
  • Latency continues to become more and more important. Low latency data centre networks allow for faster access, cheaper deployment and greater flexibility to migrate to higher speeds.
  • As ever, security ranks amongst the highest priorities for businesses. The demands for speed, connectivity and low latency cannot compromise the security required when processing information and data transfer.

Death of Multimode: Higher speeds see move towards singlemode solutions

One trend we have started to see is a lean towards singlemode only structured cabling design. With higher speeds in demand, we have seen a price drop reflected in singlemode SFP/QSFPs by many optics and equipment vendors.

Where in the past there has been a significant price gap between singlemode and multimode transmission equipment, these costs factors have played a role in determining the technology choice utilised by organisations.

With the increase of speeds and an almost price parity now on equipment, the move towards a future proof network architecture will see a significant drop in the use of multimode and copper infrastructure.

There will always be a place for these technologies, but a clear shift towards singlemode has arrived.

Structured cabling fibre solution

Renewable Power: Data centre consumption in the global spotlight

With unrelenting growth across all aspects of technology consumption and a global mirror on climate change, awareness of the need to reduce energy consumption is at fever pitch.

Data centres are, undeniably, huge consumers of energy. Figures vary, but could be as high as 2 per cent of global usage according to this Anders Andrae study commissioned by Huawei. A figure that could jump to 8 per cent by 2030, the study projects.

Be it introducing new technologies or infrastructure design, data centre providers are now being forced to look at more sustainable energy solutions and to create operational efficiencies within their existing infrastructure.

Market leaders are already looking to alternative technologies for power, cooling and at equipment level to reduce their power consumption, costs and environmental impact – like Microsoft, who recently trialled a fully submerged data centre in the ocean off Scotland.

From a legislative standpoint, it is also likely that governments may look to set quotas on big enterprise energy consumers in future.

Time to move your structured cabling or data centre infrastructure into 2020? Get in touch with our experienced team.

Futureproofing data centres: why cabling matters the most

There is an ever-growing demand for data which is putting increasing pressure on data centres to keep up. Quality cabling is the answer. By 2020, it is predicted that there will be in excess of 20 billion connected devices globally. Consumers are demanding greater capacities at faster speeds. However, space comes at a premium and data centres can’t continue to keep consuming real estate. Cabling therefore becomes the linchpin that hold data capacity and capability together. Here are three key reasons why data centre cabling is the key to futureproofing your network.

1. Making space for The Internet of Things (IoT)

Move over plain old Internet, The Internet of Things (IoT) is taking control and this is already adding pressure to data centre cabling. Smart TVs, fridges, coffee machines, headphones, watches and lamps (amongst other things—such as jet engines) have joined mobile phones and computers in the connection party. And the list of devices being ‘networked’ will only continue to grow. Essentially, anything that can be connected—will be.

Under the IoT model, data centre cabling will be under unprecedented pressure to process and store data efficiently so as to deliver services in real-time. The data centre plays an integral role in establishing and managing the relationship between people and their devices (also between one device to another) and this will mean that the physicality of the data centre network cabling will need to change to keep up.

2. Tomorrow’s mobile networks will demand even more

In the scheme of things, we’re not that far away from the 5G mobile network. So not only do data centres need to optimise their cabling networks to handle IoT applications, they also need to ensure they can handle the efficiency upgrades of the new mobile applications and associated data. This will only continue to become more critical as time goes on.

3. What about cloud computing and virtualisation?

Continuous developments to technology will also continue to put pressure on data centres and cabling efficacy. Server virtualisation and cloud computing are already in operation and will become bigger players in the future since they dramatically increase the capabilities of the servers and streamline the consumer experience respectively. Scaling will become increasingly important as cabling solutions in future data centres may need to support up to 3072 fibres per chassis.

Learn more about how Codecom can help you with your data centre cabling solutions.

How to Choose the Right Data Centre Solution

As most enterprise businesses—and a growing number of SMBs—move towards some form of hosted cloud, be it private or public, so too increases the demand for high grade products designed to cope with the sharp increases in online users and data.

With a marketplace that is ripe with “the latest and greatest” in new products, it is also becoming harder for business IT managers to be across what is currently available, and what products are right for them, to maximise the efficiency of their own data centre network. It can be a little overwhelming. However, there are a few vital elements to look for when it comes to evaluating data centre products for use.

1. High quality structured cabling is key

The first thing to know is that, within your data centre environment, structured cabling performs a vital function, acting as the conduit for information and the very backbone of connectivity. Just one damaged fibre in a cable can result in major signal loss and an unwelcome interruption to normal business operations. Therefore, it is important to choose quality products from a reputable supplier.

2. Keep loss to a minimum

When it comes to transmitting information along optical fibres, the more physical connection points you have, the greater loss you will experience. E.g. there will be loss at each connector, thru adapter and patch panel in your data centre rack. So your focus should always be to minimise connection points to try by sourcing products that are specially designed to emit low loss. One of the biggest roles we play in helping businesses and data centres to minimise loss is at the planning stage, when looking at the overall architecture of a network. It is then that we can recommend the most high-density, low loss products to keep loss—and business interruption—at a minimum.

We can also advise on things like your connectivity to services within a data centre, e.g. third party services like Amazon and Google, which are typically located in a “meet me room” within the centre. As an example of innovative low loss products on the market, we stock a range of high-density MTP and pre-terminated multi-fibre solutions that reduce strain during side load, improve guidance, reduce guide-hole-wear and eliminate lost pins and potential fibre damage from the spring. We also stock the US Conec MTP connector; the most popular and compact connector available for multicore cables.

3. Maximise rack space

The other advantage of using low loss products is that they help to maximise your available rack space. Every inch of your data centre space is prime real estate, so the higher density products you use, the greater space you have to play with — which is a major advantage when it comes to having the flexibility to make future upgrades. This is where the importance of good cable management also comes to the fore. Using efficient, high quality data cables and keeping your racks neat and tidy makes them easier for technicians to access.

4. Think scalable

Modularity in products has been an increasing focus for us over the past few years, as businesses begin to understand the importance of setting up data centre networks that can cope with future upgrades. The beauty of modular products is that they grow as you do, which makes it easier to manage CapEx spending because you only purchase the modules you need, as you need them.

5. Customise to suit your needs

Creating bespoke or custom solutions in the technology industry has traditionally come with a fairly hefty price tag. This is myth that we are doing our best to dispel at present, because we don’t believe customisation should be cost prohibitive. Many telecommunications product providers today, ourselves included, have access to manufacturing resources, which means that coming up with custom solutions is a simple matter of collaboration and creative solution design. It needn’t cost the earth, and it can be done in a matter of weeks. The important thing to remember is, that if you can’t find a product that suits your precise needs, talk to a company like Codecom who can make it happen for you.

If you need help getting the most from your data centre infrastructure, jump over to our Data Centre Solutions page or get in touch.