The end of a year and the start of a new one is always a time to take stock, reflect on the past and look forward to what the future might hold. In the fast-paced world of tech, that’s not always easy. Nonetheless, we’ve been gazing into the Tibus crystal ball to make some predictions as to what could be in store in 2017.Posted on 23 December 2016 -
2016 was punctuated by numerous disruptive DDoS attacks. An attack on the Krebs On Security website in September 2016 was said to be the largest yet and twice the size of the previous largest attack. Expect things to get even worse net year with state actors in the guise of net vandals and commercial sabotage in the guise of script kiddies. We believe the scale and frequency of DDoS attacks will unfortunately increase in 2017.
That might be a dream, but perhaps 2017 is the year that we moved past passwords. With websites demanding increasingly complex passwords, we humans are having to find increasingly ingenious means of writing them down because they are just too difficult to remember.Use of a combination of mobile and computer (two-factor) permissions and fingerprint or retina recognition (biometric) will hopefully become more common next year.
We previously campaigned for Net Neutrality and we fear we might have to do so again in 2017. The early signs from the incoming Trump administration is that they might not support the Federal Communications Commission’s position on Net Neutrality. That fear might be misplaced, but we’ll be ready for the fight if the Net Neutrality debate resurfaces.
The open source web server has moved from niche to mainstream in the last two to three years. We think 2017 will see it top both Apache and IIS as the web server of choice for websites and internet-facing applications, particularly those with high-peak load profiles.
Will 2017 see the application finally break free of the server? We're not sure because containerisation doesn't always suit legacy or homogenous IT environments. The benefits are fantastic when they can be deployed so more organisations are likely to adopt containerisation is 2017, though it might be 2018 before it truly breaks into the mainstream.
To date, the smart home has mainly been geek-only. The Tibus team has had some success with Google Nest in the form of some really beautiful products for cameras and door controls. Tado has been a revelation in central heating controls, even using an old boiler. Apple Home is making a play to integrate all into a single app-friendly control screen, and doing that well. The smart home brings a huge new security concern (this is your home, your personal security, your family) and we must treat this seriously. Software authors and vendors must be held to the highest levels of security, but the smart home is here and in 2017 it will become normal.
The new General Data Protection Regulation comes into effect in May 2018 and has largely gone unnoticed so far. With fines for breaches of the regulation due to be levied as a percentage of an organisation’s revenue, expect plenty of activity in 2017 from businesses that are starting to get a bit twitchy ahead of the change in legislation.
According to the latest data from web analytics firm StatCounter, in October 2016, mobile web devices (51.3%) had a larger share of web traffic than desktops (48.7%) for the very first time. Mobile web browsing has grown steadily since the prevalence of smartphones and tablets, and the trend is only set to continue into 2017. This means responsive web design with a mobile-first approach is more paramount than ever before.
We expect Google to move to an algorithm that uses the mobile version of a website’s content as the primary factor in ranking page relevance in 2017. Currently, the desktop version takes precedence. Business will need to adopt mobile-first methodologies and have these in place from the outset of a project, with the importance of the user and what they want to see or do taking centre stage.
We could see a quarter of all internet traffic coming from IPv6 in 2017. Adoption rates are difficult to measure, but multiple metrics suggest its around 15-20% and growing steadily year-on-year. Google’s own tracking, which measures visitors based on IP version, show a 6% growth from January 2016 to December 2016. We’ve already predicted widespread use of the smart home in 2017 and it is the internet of things that we expect to drive IPv6 adoption. The idea that everything from your watch to your cooker will have an IP address will encourage use of IPv6.
2016 was a momentous year for cryptocurrencies, with banks investing in blockchain technology to improve and secure their activities; the likes of Dash, Monero, Ethereum and Litecoin introducing features that appeal to the finance sector; and Bitcoin going strong. Development and support for cryptocurrencies is a major area of opportunity, as well as merely investing in holding assets, so we expect to see people making the most of those opportunities in 2017.
Ironically, SDN is difficult to define, although at is simplest it can be thought of as a framework to describe the separation of the control plane (the brain of a networking device) from the data plane (which is responsible for forwarding data or traffic). This means that traffic flow can be configured through programmable APIs, without the need for individual and laborious configuration changes per device. Ultimately, this means centralised logic, via an SDN controller, for the global network regardless of the multiple data centres and device types involved.
For service providers, SDN offers bandwidth on demand, meaning carrier links can limit or request additional bandwidth when necessary as well as WAN optimisation across the network. For cloud and data centres, the premise of network virtualisation for multi-tenants offers better use of resources and faster turnaround times when creating segregated networks. With major players such as AT&T, Google and Microsoft investing heavily, the sofware defined model will continue to grow in 2017.