Most new datacenters operate at optimal availability and with infrastructural energy efficiency close to theoretical design targets. As such, it might be argued that the two biggest challenges of datacenter technology in the past 30 years have been addressed.
But despite this progress, the pace of change in the datacenter industry will continue and is likely to accelerate over the next decade and beyond. This will be spurred by increasing demand for digital services, as well as the need to embrace new technologies and innovation while mitigating future disruption. At the same time, there will also be a requirement to meet increasingly stringent business parameters and service levels.
This combination of business and technology drivers is likely to result in the emergence of new classes of datacenter facili- ties. These emergent datacenter types will share some traits with existing facilities but will also be tailored to new use cases. For example, it is expected that new edge datacenter capacity will be required to aggregate, process, store and analyze data from Internet of Things (IoT) infrastructure.
This paper examines these forces of change and disruption over the next decade, makes predictions about new datacenter types and specific use cases, and finally suggests ways to future-proof existing datacenters against disruption and to capitalize on innovation.