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IT News - CxO
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The Rising Costs Of Data Breaches
IBM recently released its 2021 Cost of a Data Breach report, and the news, not surprisingly, is not good.
"The average total cost of a data breach rose from $3.86 million to $4.24 million, an increase of 10%. There's a lot of interesting data in the report, including information on the impact of remote work and Zero Trust mitigation.

The report is based on 537 data breaches that occurred in 2020 in 17 countries and regions, and in 17 different industries. IBM excluded the outliers - very large and very small breaches - to arrive at its numbers..."

Security Boulevard, October 6th, 2021
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5 Key Trends From 2021's Hype Cycle For Customer Service And Support Technologies
Assess these promising technologies to recalibrate your investments
"Automation, contact center technology, proactive service and customer service analytics have become investment priorities for customer support and service (CSS) leaders as COVID-19 drives an increase in customer service demand.

The technologies featured on this year's Hype Cycle for Customer Service and Support Technologies largely fall into the aforementioned categories. They enable personalized and contextual customer engagement, improve the working environment for support reps and facilitate customer self-service interactions..."

Gartner, September 28th, 2021
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CIOs Lead Digital Transformation As Pilots, Co-Pilots, Engineers
The solution: a holistic approach that combines a practical understanding of how to apply organizational change management, some degree of experience operationalizing digital transformation programs, and, most importantly, the right Digital Adoption Platform (DAP). Separating a great plan from great execution is the DAP - it is the part of the process that most organizations execute well, according to a WalkMe-commissioned report by Futurum Research on the current state of digital technology adoption.
"Over the years, the CIO role has evolved," opines Sanjay Srivastava in SearchCIO. "from strategic value delivery leader to a co-creator of new businesses. This push is leading to increasing alignment across the C-suite and the opportunity for CIOs to be at the forefront of digital transformation.

This has been the case for CIOs across all industries. Life sciences companies have dramatically accelerated development cycles, consumer goods companies have reinvented direct-to-consumer business models and retailers have organized their supply chains and reimagined their storefronts, to name a few examples..."

SearchCIO, September 29th, 2021
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CIOs Signal Hybrid Work Will Power Tech Spending Through 2022
Throughout the pre-vaccine COVID era, information technology buyers indicated budget constraints would squeeze 2020 spending by roughly 5% relative to 2019 levels
Dave Vellante writes in siliconANGLE, "But the forced march to digital, combined with increased cybersecurity threats for remote workers, created a modernization mandate that powered fourth-quarter spending last year.

This momentum has carried through to 2021. Although COVID variants have delayed return-to-work and business travel plans, our current forecast for global IT spending remains strong at 6% to 7%, slightly down from previous estimates. But the real story is that chief information officers and IT buyers expect a 7% to 8% increase in 2022 spending, reflecting investments in hybrid work strategies and a continued belief that technology remains the underpinning of competitive advantage in the coming decade..."

siliconANGLE, September 27th, 2021
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Digital Transformation Spending Is Up To $700B Per Year, But Results Lag
Annually, an estimated $700 billion in digital transformation spending falls short of delivering on the desired results.
"The solution: a holistic approach that combines a practical understanding of how to apply organizational change management, some degree of experience operationalizing digital transformation programs, and, most importantly, the right Digital Adoption Platform (DAP). Separating a great plan from great execution is the DAP - it is the part of the process that most organizations execute well, according to a WalkMe-commissioned report by Futurum Research on the current state of digital technology adoption." - VentureBeat
VentureBeat, September 27th, 2021
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How CIOs Measure Themselves And Why It Matters
CIOs today are focused on front office effectiveness and business model transformation. By necessity this changes how they get measured.
Myles Suer writes in eWeek, "Over the last several years, I have asked CIOs multiple times about how they would like their performance to be measured. One answer has come back repeatedly: They want to be measured the same way as their Chief Executive Officer is measured. Hopefully, this isn't news to anyone reading this piece.

This should really matter to technology sellers. As I mention in my review of 'The Qualified Sales Leader,' John McMahon says, 'account executives need to slow down to go fast. They need to understand the magnitude of their customers' pain and environment'..."

eWeek, September 27th, 2021
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How CISO Roles Will Change As Customer Trust Becomes Imperative
The trust imperative is the next major shift enterprises will encounter.
Jeff Pollard writes in ZDNet, "In 2021, digital transformation no longer counts as innovative; it's a baseline expectation for every enterprise. The trust imperative is the next major shift enterprises will encounter. New market leaders will not solely arise from technology platforms, sophisticated analytics, or sophisticated capital allocations. Instead, consumers and business leaders will increasingly turn to companies they can trust. And trust will move markets..."
ZDNet, September 27th, 2021
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IT News - Security
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The Top Ransomware Threats Aren't Who You Think
Move over REvil, Ragnar Locker, BlackMatter, Conti et al: Three lesser-known gangs account for the vast majority of ransomware attacks in the U.S. and globally
"While there seem to be legions of ransomware gangs, it turns out that just a handful of ransomware-as-a-service (RaaS) actors dominate the entire ecosystem of encryption-attack threats.," writes Becky Bracken in threatpost.

"In fact, just three ransomware families, none of them household names, make up 64 percent of all threats detected, according to telemetry data collected by Bitdefender during August: WannaCryptor, Stop/DJVU and Phobos..."

threatpost, September 30th, 2021
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Attacks Against Remote Desktop Protocol Endpoints Have Exploded This Year, Warns ESET's latest Threat Report
Security firm points to a 'stalkerware' epidemic, new Nobelium group activity
Gareth Halfacree writes in The Register, "Security specialist ESET's latest Threat Report warns of a massive increase in attacks on Remote Desktop Protocol (RDP) endpoints - and new activity from the Nobelium gang against European government organisations.

ESET's figures show attacks on RDP servers having gone up 103.9 per cent since its T1 report in June - it publishes three a year - representing a total of 55 billion detected brute-force attacks, thanks in no small part to a campaign focused on Spanish targets..."

The Register, September 30th, 2021
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Cybersecurity Training Trends 2021
Cybersecurity training trends reflect the urgent need for organizations of all sizes to harden their infrastructure against increasing external and internal attacks
Sarah Hunt writes in Datamation, "In 2020, some 37 billion records were compromised in nearly 4,000 reported data breaches, according to RiskBased Security's 2020 Year End Data Breach QuickView Report.

Organizations that fail to invest in cybersecurity training are leaving their networks more vulnerable..."

Datamation, September 27th, 2021
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OWASP Top 10 Vulnerabilities
Last week was the 20th anniversary of the Open Web Application Security Project (OWASP), and in honor of that date, the organization issued its long-awaited update to its top 10 exploits.
"It has been in draft form for months and has been updated several times since 2003, and before its latest iteration, in 2017.

In the past two decades, OWASP has become a sprawling series of projects, tutorials, knowledge bases, and other tools that are incredibly useful for application developers, corporate security managers, and penetration testers. If you haven't spent much time browsing its content, I'd encourage doing so, as it's very worthwhile and a tremendous learning resource. It incorporates the work of hundreds of volunteers, spanning hundreds of local chapters who give their time and energy to help improve the quality of applications and stop potential cyberthreats. It now has more than 200 different projects that cover topics such as mobile security, various testing tools such as WebGoat, and honeypots..." - Security Boulevard

Security Boulevard, September 28th, 2021
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What Is A Botnet Attack? A Guide For Security Professionals
What is a botnet attack, and how do you stop one? A botnet (derived from 'robot network') is a large group of malware-infected internet-connected devices and computers controlled by a single operator.
Michelle Greenlee writes in SecurityIntelligence, "Attackers use these compromised devices to launch large-scale attacks to disrupt services, steal credentials and gain unauthorized access to critical systems. The botnet command and control model allows the attacker(s) to take over operations of these devices in order to control them remotely. A botnet's strength is in the number of infected machines it contains. Attackers can control botnets remotely and receive software updates from them, using those updates to quickly shift their behavior...'
SecurityIntelligence, September 27th, 2021
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IT News - EdTech
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Ransomware Impact On The Education Sector
Several major ransomware incidents that impacted our daily lives occurred in 2021. In early May, Colonial Pipeline, the largest refined petroleum pipeline in the United States, was infected by DarkSide ransomware.
"The infection forced the company to shut down their pipeline as a precautionary measure while assessments were being made, leading to long lines of cars at gas stations along the East Coast. Later that same month, the REvil ransomware attacked JBS, the world's largest meat processor, and disrupted the company's meat productions. In July, REvil struck again, affecting customers of the managed services provider Kaseya. Attackers exploited an authentication bypass vulnerability in the Kaseya VSA (Virtual System Administrator) software, allowing attackers to distribute a malicious payload to downstream customers through hosts managed by the software..."
Fortinet News, October 5th, 2021
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14 Top Education Technology Companies To Watch
The COVID-19 pandemic has created new challenges and opportunities for the education technology industry, which has had to cope with an unprecedented volume of students needing online courses and distance learning
"The field of education technology has many different players, with a mission to facilitate student learning through online and computer-based training," writes Sarah Schmidt in marketresearch.com.

"These companies serve different market segments including public and private schools, corporations, and government organizations. They provide products and solutions related to virtual classrooms, e-learning materials, learning management systems, computer-aided assessment systems, and much more..."

marketresearch.com, October 1st, 2021
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The New Era Of Education Is High-Tech And High-Touch
We've heard a lot about the role of technology in pandemic education, and for good reason: Digital solutions enabled school communities to maintain learning through uncertainty and interruption none of us could have imagined
"However," notes Jack Lynch in TechCrunch, "the triumphs of edtech have been paired with critical challenges. Since the pandemic closed schools in March 2020, school districts have invested in getting students access to computing devices and the internet.

Technology-hesitant teachers became technology-proficient as they learned to navigate remote teaching and learning in impromptu virtual classrooms. Still, with all of the progress we made in digital learning, the interruption of the face-to-face social aspects of the classroom experience resulted in the students finishing the 2020-2021 school year four to five months behind in reading and math on average, according to a recent study from McKinsey & Company..."

TechCrunch, September 28th, 2021
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Using Systems Thinking to Tackle the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
In 2015, the UN launched the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as a 'blueprint to achieve a better and more sustainable future' by 2030.
"These 17 goals address the global challenges we face - from poverty to climate change to inequality (United Nations).

While some progress has been made since 2015, the UN has more recently launched the Decade of Action to call for more urgent, ambitious action to meet these goals by 2030 (United Nations).

These 17 global goals are deeply connected, as are the systems attached to these goals.

For this reason, in my classroom, I like to teach about the Sustainable Development Goals through a Systems Thinking lens..." - EdTEch Classroom

EdTEch Classroom, September 29th, 2021
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Zoom EdTech Chief: Bricks-And-Mortar Universities Will Be Next To Face Digital Disruption
Zoom on why the investment in edtech will outlast Covid, as hybrid models are here to stay in corporate and higher education. Giacomo Lee reports.
The 'Zoom Boom' of the last 18 months has seen more of us work and play in video calls, leading to a much-discussed sea change in employment and entertainment. But the impact of virtual conferencing on the future of education will be just as great as on the future of work, and there's growing investment in edtech as a result. Edtech isn't just for schools, either: it's also a new way to train staff in areas such as cybersecurity - an increasing workplace danger - and another reason to invest in the virtual sphere even after Covid. Hybrid models, in other words, aren't going away anytime soon.
Power Technology, September 30th, 2021
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IT News - Storage
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Best Enterprise Storage Solutions And Software 2021
Dell, NetApp, Huawei, HPE and Hitachi Vantara on top, followed by DataCore, Pure Storage and FalconStor
"The storage market used to be a simple landscape. There were DAS, SANs, and NAS. The primary arguments were: why keep everything directly attached when you should be using a SAN; or which is better for you, a SAN or NAS?

That simple world is long gone. Storage solutions have changed markedly of late. Whether it's the cloud, object storage, or SDS, the many permutations of storage make for a complex picture..."

StorageNewsletter, September 27th, 2021
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Computational Storage: Go Beyond Computation Offloading
Computational storage proponents include academia and the Storage Networking Industry Association. While there's behind-the-scenes work still to do, the tech could bring benefits.
"Computational storage has a simple rationale: move computational tasks closer to where data resides, writes Tong Zhang in SearchStorage. "By doing so, we improve system performance and efficiency. Because storage data is processed at all levels of the data center -- inside a server, across a network and, of course, in storage environments -- these efficiencies are highly sought after.

Part of the reason is that storage is not one monolithic entity. As a matter of fact, storage exists at many layers and has many different components. Some of these components have to do with the data itself -- storage, protection and transmission. Other components have to do with controlling systems of storage, setting up management planes, and even orchestrating how, where and when data is transmitted inside and outside different systems..."

SearchStorage, September 30th, 2021
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NVMe-Over-Fabrics: Five Need-To-Knows
We look at five need-to-knows about NVMe-over-fabrics, such as its implementations - RDMA, Fibre Channel and TCP - use cases, hardware and operating system support
"NVMe as a connection method for flash storage seems to be achieving near ubiquity, opines Antony Adshead in ComputerWeekly. "Perhaps that's not quite true in all storage use cases, but for all-flash and hybrid flash arrays that service mainstream datacentre workloads, it is certainly true.

But NVMe is merely the drive-to-backplane connection. To connect over longer distances and fabrics/networks - spanning the rack and beyond - and to retain the advantages of NVMe connectivity, NVMe-over-fabrics is required.

NVMe-over-fabrics extends that super-fast flash access beyond the backplane.

In this article, we look at five key things you need to know about NVMe-over-fabrics..."

ComputerWeekly, September 29th, 2021
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IT News - AI
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OpenaAI Unveils Model That Can Summarize Books Of Any Length
OpenAI has developed an AI model that can summarize books of arbitrary length
Kyle Wiggers writes in VentureBeat, "A fine-tuned version of the research lab's GPT-3, the model works by first summarizing small sections of a book and then summarizing those summaries into higher-level summaries, following a paradigm OpenAI calls 'recursive task decomposition.'

Summarizing book-length documents could be valuable in the enterprise, particularly for documentation-heavy industries like software development. A survey by SearchYourCloud found that workers take up to eight searches to find the right document, and McKinsey reports that employees spend 1.8 hours every day - 9.3 hours per week, on average - searching and gathering job-related information..."

VentureBeat, September 27th, 2021
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When Using AI In Enterprises, Balancing Innovation And Privacy Is Critical
While the U.S. is making strides in the advancement of AI use cases across industries, we have a long way to go before AI technologies are commonplace and truly ingrained in our daily life.
"What are the missing pieces?" asks Rob Lee in EnterpriseAI. "Better data access and improved data sharing.

As our ability to address point applications and solutions with AI technology matures, we will need a greater ability to share data and insights while being able to draw conclusions across problem domains. Cooperation between individuals from government, research, higher education and the private sector to make greater data sharing feasible will drive acceleration of new use cases while balancing the need for data privacy.

EnterpriseAI, September 27th, 2021
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IT News - Technology
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Implementing A 46-Node Quantum Metropolitan Area Network
Quantum key distribution (QKD) is a method used for secure or secret key exchanges between two remote users.
"Using secure communication, cyberscientists ultimately aim to establish a global quantum network," writes Thamarasee Jeewandara in Phy.org.

"Existing field tests suggest that such quantum networks are feasible. To achieve a practical quantum network, several challenges must be overcome including the realization of varied topologies at large scales, simple network maintenance and robustness to node failures. In a new report now published on Science Advances, Teng-Yun Chen and a research team in quantum physics, quantum information and interdisciplinary information sciences in China, presented a field operation of a quantum metropolitan area network with 46 nodes..."

Phy.org, October 1st, 2021
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Quantum Computing Memory And Storage
At the 2021 SNIA Storage Developers Conference (SDC) Doug Finke, Managing Editor of the Quantum Computing Report talked about how storage and memory will play roles in Quantum Computing (QC) and how quantum computing can play a role in discovery and optimization in the storage industry.
"The figures below are from his presentation, with my commentary," writes Tom Coughlin in Forbes.

"There has been much discussion about the future of quantum computing. Briefly, quantum computing uses physical quantum mechanical processes such as superposition and entanglement to create a processing device. The Qubits in quantum computing can hold an exponential number of states using superposition and entanglement which can be an equivalent number of bits.

N-qubits is comparable to 2n bits. To get an idea what this means, Finke said that 100 qubits can hold more states than all the hard disk drives in the world. 300 qubits can hold more states than the number of atoms in the universe. However, qubits will collapse (or decohere) to a single 0 or 1 state due to small environmental disturbances..."

Forbes, September 28th, 2021
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IT News - Operations
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Best Information Technology Service Management (ITSM) tools in 2021
The best Information Technology Service Management platforms
"The best ITSM tools make it simpler and easier to manage IT hardware assets across your business or organization," suggests Jonas DeMuro and Brian Turner in ITProPortal.

"Information Technology Service Management (ITSM) tools make it easier to track and resolve issues across multiple assets, making it simpler to manage a wide range of devices connected to your IT infrastructure.

One of the key issues faced by ITSM is the variety of devices that might be used, as network connections can involve desktop PCs, laptops, as well as smartphones, all of which will need to be kept up to date with security updates, as well as software patch management...."

ITProPortal, September 28th, 2021
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Harnessing The Value Of Log Data Analytics
Each day, the average enterprise's cloud applications, containers, compute nodes and other components throw off millions of tiny logs
Thomas Hazel writes in DevOps.com, "Each log is a file whose data describes an event such as a user action, service request, application task or compute error. Logs also capture messages that applications and other components send to one another.

There's a wealth of information and value hidden in those logs, which is why businesses are so keen on using them to address business needs like customer engagement, IT security and cloud operations..."

DevOps.com, September 27th, 2021
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How To Choose The Best Desktop-As-A-Service Solution
With the future of work moving from office cubicles to the home, DaaS is becoming a more attractive choice than ever
"Thanks to the pandemic, working from home no longer languishes as a rare option for a few workers. It's mainstream business practice," opines Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols in ComputerWorld.

"Just ask Google, Facebook, Netflix, or the U.S. government: They're all either delaying office reopenings or shifting to remote or hybrid work.

With this work transformation, the desktop is also changing. Decades ago, we used dumb terminals attached to mainframes for corporate work. Then, 40 years ago, we moved to the PC. We still have PCs on our desks, but increasingly, we've been moving back to the centralized model..."

ComputerWorld, September 27th, 2021
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IT News - Social Media
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6 Social Media Planning Tools At A Glance
Social media managers usually oversee all relevant social networks. In addition, they create individual content for each individual social media channel. However, this harbors time and resource challenges.
"Social media planning tools are used here," writes Aabhas VijaySeptember in Business 2 Community, "which make it possible to plan several postings in a platform in advance. To help you find your way through the jungle of diverse social media tools, we present six tools:

# 1 Hootsuite

Let's start with Hootsuite . Hootsuite is the most widely used platform - with more than 10 million customers - for managing social networks with a focus on small and medium-sized businesses..."

Business 2 Community, September 29th, 2021
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IT News - Linux
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How To Pick A Linux Distribution For Non-Techies
I have suffered from distrohopping. Now that I have settled for the last two years, here are some tips to save your time.
Ujjwal Anand writes in Linux Journal, "All distros run the same operating system at their core, Linux. They are more similar than different. Hence, the marginal cost (time) of looking for a better distro is much more than the marginal benefit of it.

Say no to distributions made for specific purposes like Kali, CentOS, and OpenSuse. OpenSuse is great, but it is made for enterprise use. An everyday user won't ever need most of its features. To maintain it would be a waste of time. The same goes for the RedHat family..."

Linux Journal, September 30th, 2021
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The Best Linux Laptops Of 2021 For Developers And Enthusiasts
If you want a great Linux experience, we recommend getting a laptop that comes with a Linux OS pre-installed
"That way your laptop's hardware and drivers will work without a hitch," suggests Chris Hoffman in How-To Geek.

"Here are our recommendations to do just that.

You can buy nearly any laptop and install Linux on it. However, there's no guarantee that the laptop's hardware will work properly with Linux. If the right hardware drivers aren't available for the Linux OS you pick, some of the laptop's features won't work, or the laptop may just get worse battery life due to poor optimization...."

How-To Geek, September 27th, 2021
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IT News - Cloud
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Best Infrastructure As A Service (IaaS) In 2021
Create customized virtual IT infrastructure to meet your needs
"The best Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) providers can offer simple cost-effective solutions to virtual IT infrastructure, helping you move your servers to the cloud," suggests Nate Drake , Brian Turner in ITProPortal.

"IaaS promises not just ease and convenience, but also a service provision at a much lower cost than investing up front in expensive on-premises hardware.

As a cloud service it offers a number of additional benefits when it comes to cloud computing and cloud storage, not least that it's a scalable solution meaning you don't have to worry about resources limits, and additionally you pay only for what you use as opposed to paying extra for physical services to provide redundancy if needed..."

ITProPortal, September 28th, 2021
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Cloud Infrastructure Spending Decreased In Second Quarter Of 2021 But Is On Track For Growth In The Full Year, According To IDC
Spending on shared cloud infrastructure reached $11.9 billion, a decrease of 6.1% compared to 2Q20, and a 17% increase from 1Q21.
According to the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Enterprise Infrastructure Tracker: Buyer and Cloud Deployment, spending on compute and storage infrastructure products for cloud infrastructure, including dedicated and shared environments, decreased 2.4% year over year in the second quarter of 2021 (2Q21) to $16.8 billion. This decrease comes after six quarters of year-over-year growth, and most notably compares to the 39.1% annual growth seen by the market in 2Q20, when the world just entered the pandemic with the first wave of business and country closures causing a spike in investments in cloud services and infrastructure. Investments in non-cloud infrastructure increased 3.4% year over year in 2Q21 to $13.4 billion recovering from a 7.2% decline in 2Q20. - IDC
IDC, October 1st, 2021
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IT News - IoT
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How IoT Is Driving Industrial Innovation
Research conducted by Reply explores the growth of IoT within the industrial market
Aaron Hurst writes in Information Age, "The Internet of Things (IoT) has been playing an increasingly prominent role in industrial contexts, helping manufacturers to speed up operations at scale and innovate. This was a theme that was explored in a recent report conducted by Reply, 'Industrial IoT: A Reality Check', which delved into two key areas that are driving growth within the industrial market: smart factory, and smart transport & logistics...."
Information Age, September 29th, 2021
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