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IDC Makes Future of Connectedness Predictions

November 10, 2022

International Data Corporation (IDC) made Future of Connectedness predictions for 2023 and beyond. The transition to hybrid work and more distributed workforces has created greater expectations from employees, customers, and partners for seamless anytime anywhere digital interactions to mission-critical systems and processes.

As businesses look ahead to 2023 and beyond, they will face added stressors economic uncertainty, regional conflicts, supply chain constraints, and a shortage of workers and staffing. While these challenges will play a role in key decisions, IDC data shows that 81% of organizations are still prioritizing connectivity programs. Companies are expected to continue leveraging investments to automate key processes, transform workplaces, improve customer experiences, and increase corporate resiliency.

Connectivity programs will embrace 5G, edge, and cloud infrastructure and services to keep data moving. More importantly, these programs will continue to focus on improving efficiency and leveraging data to provide real-time business insights. As networks and business requirements evolve, enterprise network and IT departments must align their systems and processes to ensure business continuity, empower greater employee productivity, and help organizations adapt quickly to changing business environments and requirements.

"The impacts of hybrid work, inflation, global economics, and business uncertainty are forcing enterprises to adapt business operations to counteract disruptive market forces," said Paul Hughes, research director, Future of Connectedness at IDC. "Organizations that adopt and integrate a smart, scalable, and flexible cloud-centric connectivity strategy across the organization will reap the benefits of improved agility, a more productive workforce, and more resilient operations."

IDC's top 10 predictions for the Future of Connectedness 2022 are:

Prediction 1: By 2024, 75% of enterprises will leverage cloud-based APIs to create customer engagement applications that integrate UCaaS/CPaaS platforms with multichannel options to improve customer experience.

Prediction 2: By 2025, 50% of digital organizations will augment "cloud first" with a "wireless first" multi-access network fabric using diverse technologies for mission-critical and business continuity use cases.

Prediction 3: By 2025, only 30% of organizations will benefit from defined 5G use cases due to fragmentation and lack of leadership among connectivity, technology, and managed services providers.

Prediction 4: By 2026, 40% of enterprises will double investments in hyperconnected digital spaces to increase productivity, improve collaboration, and boost energy efficiency.

Prediction 5: By 2024, 50% of large enterprises will use a hyperscaler's cloud WAN service within their network, either directly or indirectly, pushing telcos further toward the role of service integrators.

Prediction 6: By 2027, the metaverse will account for 70% of annual media traffic growth on the internet, where both consumer and business use cases will drive increased bandwidth demand.

Prediction 7: By 2023, 40% of enterprises will benefit from optimized operational efficiency, enhanced security, and reduced network costs by leveraging SD-WAN and security for cloud-managed networking and security.

Prediction 8: By 2024, 30% of enterprises will extend network attentiveness across all major IT teams (e.g., SecOps, DevOps, and AIOps) by expanding skill development, screening requirements, and NetOps interactions.

Prediction 9: By 2026, 40% of companies will lag in executing a resilient connectivity strategy due to budget shortfalls, as workplace transformation becomes the new normal for customers, employers, and partners.

Prediction 10: By 2027, 80% of G2000 enterprises will require low earth orbit (LEO) satellites to cover gaps in network coverage for remote, rural, and high-risk international locations.

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