The COVID19 pandemic has led to a surge in companies adopting cloud computing. In the Middle East, adoption has almost increased by a mammoth 100 percent.
Be it large or small enterprises, everyone is looking forward to adopting cloud computing in order to sustain their business and make their functioning easier.
According to a report in Gartner, organisations are increasingly moving their applications and workloads to the public cloud as concerns around security and governance dissipate further.
The collective economic goal of the MENA region to become more technology- and data-centric has been a cornerstone to this rapid acceptance of both the private and public cloud.
Further, small and midsize businesses (SMBs) in MENA have started to increase their spending in public cloud services.
SMBs in the region are focusing their investments in cloud deployments that will enable faster business analytics and artificial intelligence, both of which are key growth drivers for the public cloud in the region.
Future of cloud computing in the Middle East market
“Cloud adoption has increased in comparison to the previous year, in the year 2020 the cloud adoption has dramatically increased,” said Sheeba Hasnain, Senior IT & Digital Transformation Specialist, Government Entity.
Not only for the MENA region but even worldwide there has been an increase of 70 percent but it is estimated that in the MENA region alone cloud adoption could cross 95 percent and small, medium and large enterprises will adopt cloud infrastructure in the coming years.
There will be less dependability on the physical infrastructure due to the remote work culture even after the pandemic.
“In the UAE we are slowly moving towards normal life very soon. From the month of March to July we all were working from home.
People rarely used to go to the office due to complete restrictions. When we will be completely vaccinated, restrictions will start to ease and we will start going to the office but the remote work culture will not stop,” added Hasnain.
She further added that it has become easier for the companies to function remotely as they are able to stay connected in some way or the other.
The remote working culture is not going to stop anytime soon and when this is the scenario there will be a huge exchange of data that will take place.
In the year 2020 itself, about 30 percent of small companies realised the importance of shifting to cloud. It could be in the form of infrastructure as if they adopt cloud in the initial stage they have better chances of gaining visibility, understanding and sustain in the market.
They started adopting cloud service which is leading to less capital expenditure and they could use the same money in the operation services of the cloud which allows the small organisations to increase their capacity and they also have the flexibility and security of working. They get the top services at a low expense.
“Cloud services will dramatically increase in the coming years, people will have confidence and they will start using applications as-a-service, platform-as-a-service, and software-as-a-service. Cloud is the future of MEA and the world in general,” added Hasnain.
Challenges in adoption of cloud
“When there is transparency in knowledge regarding cloud then the fear with regard to insecurity from peoples mind will be removed. This fear I think is the main challenge.
In the Middle East region, people are actively involved in investment and are trying to get the best technology is what I have seen in my career.
Even our governments are adopting the best technology and are trying to be more innovative in various areas and not only in technology,” pointed Hasnain.
She further underlined that based on her experiences during her career with the continued support of the authorities, there will be full-fledged adoption of cloud in the Middle East region.
Measures taken by the government
“The involvement of the stakeholders is the main criteria to help in the process of digitisation. There are various occasions where sharing of knowledge takes place.
There is a lot of agility in the market, not only private but government officials are also actively involved.
I can see increased agility in the knowledge sharing and compliance area if all the stakeholders will understand their responsibility only then the real part of the security can be dealt with,” added Hasnain.
She further added that with the support of the government various knowledge sharing activities take place which will lead to the full execution of plans.
A report in Research and Markets added that the Middle East cloud applications market size is expected to grow from USD 2 billion in 2019 to USD 4.5 billion by 2024, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 17.5 percent during the forecast period.
The report further added that in this region, the Banking, Financial Services, and Insurance (BFSI), government, and energy and utilities verticals are shifting toward the adoption of cloud computing services rapidly.
According to a survey done by Cisco, cloud traffic is expected to surge between 2016 and 2021. Moreover, the region is receiving investments for infrastructure by leading market players.
The increased awareness of cloud applications, lower operational costs, scalability, and disaster recovery are a few factors driving the adoption of cloud computing in this region.
Major US-based tech companies such as Google, Microsoft, and AWS have shown interest and launched their data centers in the region.
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