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IT vendors seeking to convince CIOs and CTOs about their blockchain-related solutions have been challenged by an apparent shift in market perception. Distributed ledger technology hype reached a peak and as a result, the upside growth potential had fallen significantly.

Global blockchain revenues fell by 35 percent between 2018 and 2020. According to the latest worldwide market study by ABI Research, the potential loss could have reached $2.8 billion.

Moreover, the reported ‘crypto winter’ of 2018 removed 80 percent of the aggregate market cap, and more than 2,000 cryptocurrencies collapsed. However, that market correction was enlightening.

Blockchain Market Development

This dampened overall blockchain adoption significantly in other markets, with many startups folding and different verticals showing a distinct lack of market adoption. Furthermore, the COVID-19 pandemic had a significant impact on investment opportunities and appetite for new blockchain applications. …


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Across the globe, many forward-thinking leaders continue to provide funds for Information Technology (IT) innovation that’s intended to fuel their digital growth. Some apply proven ways to reduce their Communication Services spend, which is typically the largest IT expense, and thereby reinvest that budget.

As an example, despite the disruptive impacts of the COVID-19 global pandemic, 47 percent of organizations plan to increase their investments in the Internet of Things (IoT), according to the latest worldwide market study by Gartner.

Following the COVID-19 lockdown, the survey found that 35 percent of organizations reduced their investments in IoT, while a larger number of organizations are planning to invest more in IoT implementations. …


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Forward-thinking CIOs and CTOs in the financial services sector have evolved. The increased competition from digital-only challenger banks has redefined customer expectations. While some traditional banks have been disrupted by the rise of fintech, others have advanced and prospered.

Tech-savvy bankers chose to adapt and transform the way they operate, in order to lower their operating costs and compete more effectively. The adoption of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and machine learning has been essential to their digital transformation, plus the use of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) platforms.

While many of these workflow optimizations are in the back-office processes, most also have a positive customer experience impact. Chatbots are being used to offer a better online user experience. Several banks also offer AI-based insights within their mobile banking apps, or AI-assisted investing via Robo-Advisors. …


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If you want to thrive and prosper, then encouraging ‘remote work’ must be part of your organization’s digital transformation agenda and knowledge worker culture. Each individual ‘branch of one’ person must be supported at the edge of an organization’s secure network infrastructure.

Edge Computing refers to the facilities and services between centralized enterprise data centers and intelligent endpoints — either a branch location or more recently an employee home office. Moreover, an endpoint can be a mobile device, such as a smartphone or media tablet. It could also be a sensor.

Proliferating devices benefit from a digitally transformed IT world through cloud edge capabilities. Regardless of how that edge is being defined, the compute, storage and networking cornerstones gird data creation, analysis, and management outside of the centralized core. …


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The success of Wi-Fi 6 isn’t a foregone conclusion. There’s growing interest among CIOs and CTOs in strategic applications for fifth-generation (5G) network deployment with unlicensed and shared spectrum in both the consumer and the enterprise Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN) markets.

Distributed Antenna Systems (DASs) have become a vital component for in-building wireless cellular communication coverage, especially in the U.S. and Asian markets. However, many legacy DASs are facing challenges incorporating 5G and increasing the overall capacity of the systems.

To overcome these challenges, many Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) are starting to transition from traditional in-building DASs to 5G-Ready digital Distributed Radio Systems (DRS) due to technical and financial aspects and a smooth transition to 5G networks. …


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Most enterprise CIOs and other information technology (IT) executives have the support of their organization’s forward-looking board of directors. However, given the current global economy, IT cost optimization is a hot topic at executive briefings about the CFO’s budget allocations.

Worldwide IT spending is forecast to total $3.8 trillion in 2021 — that’s an increase of 4 percent over 2020. Meanwhile, IT spending during 2020 is now expected to total $3.6 trillion — that’s down 5.4 percent from 2019 levels, according to the latest market study by Gartner.

“In the 25 years that Gartner has been forecasting IT spending, never has there been a market with this much volatility,” said John-David Lovelock, vice president at Gartner. “While there have been unique stressors imposed on all industries as the ongoing pandemic unfolds, the enterprises that were already more digital going into the crisis are doing better and will continue to thrive going into 2021.” …


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The applications for the Internet of Things (IoT) technologies have gained new momentum within industrial sectors. With a focus on machine-to-machine (M2M) communication and machine learning, Industrial IoT enables CIOs and CTOs to improve the efficiency and reliability of key operations.

The primary sectors served by Industrial IoT solutions include agriculture, energy and utilities, logistics, manufacturing, mining, plus petrochemical oil and gas. Leaders within the Industrial IoT ecosystem must ensure that they implement the most applicable connectivity technologies for each application scenario.

These IoT solutions can utilize various available wireless networking technology standards — such as Wi-Fi, LoRa, Zigbee, Bluetooth, or 5G cellular — which demonstrates the potential for fragmentation. …


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It’s inevitable, the Chief Human Resource Officer (CHRO) and Chief Information Officer (CIO) must now work together more closely to deliver the progressive employment policies, flexible business processes, and adaptable IT platforms that enable the work-from-anywhere economy.

The American mobile worker population will grow over the next four years, increasing from 78.5 million in 2020 to 93.5 million mobile workers in 2024, according to the latest market study by International Data Corporation (IDC).

By the end of the forecast period, IDC expects mobile workers will account for nearly 60 percent of the total U.S. workforce.

“COVID-19’s disruption of the U.S. labor force has had a dramatic impact on how large businesses operate and will continue to shape how and where people work in the months to come,” said Bryan Bassett, senior research analyst at IDC. …


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In the past, most CIOs and CTOs would consider Wi-Fi infrastructure as the primary mode of delivering wireless local area network connectivity to their organization. Now, the development of fifth-generation (5G) cellular technologies has created alternative modes of wireless networking.

Moreover, the demand for private networks in the enterprise domain continues to rise. According to the latest worldwide market study by ABI Research, private cellular network deployments within the enterprise domain will generate equipment revenues of more than $64 billion by 2030.

While very large enterprises will likely drive the market for the next 10 years — accounting for 50 percent of private networks by 2030 — companies with annual revenues between $250 million and $1 billion will account for 40 percent of private networks by 2030, with their proportion expected to rise further beyond the forecast period. …


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While many organizations are concerned about cash flow and other financial metrics, given the current economic environment, the most forward-looking leaders plan further investments in strategic Digital Transformation projects.

Sixty-nine percent of enterprise boards of directors (BoDs) accelerated their digital business initiatives in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic disruption, according to the latest market study by Gartner. Almost half anticipate changing their organizations’ traditional business model as a result of the pandemic.

The ‘2021 Gartner Board of Directors Survey’ was aimed to understand how boards of directors view digital business model evolution in their enterprises, along with the role of the CIO and other executive leaders, specifically in the context of responding to the current economic crisis. …

About

David H. Deans

Technology, Media, Telecom analyst, consultant, columnist

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