By Yaakov Shapiro, Chief Technology Officer, Tangoe

As we prepare to embark on a new decade, we’ll continue to see changes both in the way enterprises provide their service and the way their customers will consume those services – and we expect 2020 to be a landmark year of change in many respects.

Here’s a look at the top technology trends changing the enterprise in 2020.

1. IoT gets more complex as enterprises add endpoints to their network.

The number of total installed Internet of Things (IoT) connected devices is projected to amount to 75.44 billion worldwide by 2025 — a fivefold increase in the past 10 years. Many of these devices will be in the enterprise, with more types entering the mobile conversation — moving beyond current standards of tablets, smartphones and laptops to tech like wearables, connected machines and VR devices.

Both the quantity and the types of devices will add complexity to how an organization manages all the endpoints on its network, leading to the potential for security, spending and inventory gaps. Any “thing” with connectivity is, by definition, a mobile device and needs to be managed and treated as an endpoint. As a result, supporting, monitoring, and managing this growing segment, while integrating these devices into the business environment, will be a major focus for businesses in the coming year.

2. Companies regain control over cloud spending with a consolidated view.

Overspending on cloud happens due to a lack of proper visibility into capacity, services, applications, assets and usage, and/or when there are too many separate systems to manage IT expenses, contracts, licenses and usage effectively. According to Gartner, by 2020, organizations that lack cost optimization processes will average 40% overspend in public cloud — which is a significant amount of money for any enterprise.

To better manage cloud investments and control spending, enterprises will reevaluate what they need regarding capacity and assets, turning to tools that create a consolidated view of their organization’s infrastructure.

3. Automation and AI expand in enterprise solutions.

As people increasingly trust and understand automation and artificial intelligence (AI), their uses will expand to other areas of business operations. In the area of enterprise technology management solutions specifically, bots will be further integrated to perform tasks like negotiating contracts or restructuring bill payments to save organizations time and money – all without humans needing to intervene.

4. Fixed and mobile technologies converge with 5G.

The long-awaited fifth generation of mobile internet connectivity has promised to bring more reliable connections and faster download and upload speeds. With some of the biggest names in telecom (AT&T, Qualcomm, Verizon, Nokia, and others) keeping global deployments on pace, 2020 will be the year 5G proliferates.

It’s important to keep in mind that its value won’t be limited to mobile devices either; it is also poised to accelerate advancements in industrial IoT (IIoT) — autonomous driving, smart cities, Industry 4.0 and other bandwidth-hungry applications. 5G will be available over a wired connection as well, leading to the convergence of fixed and mobile technologies.

5. Enterprises get a glimpse of digital transformation 2.0. The second wave of digital transformation will incorporate more cutting-edge technologies like machine learning, AI, advanced robotics, wearables, autonomous devices and automation into the enterprise and consumer ecosystems.

While the first wave of transformation was based on legacy infrastructure and architectures, the on-demand, bandwidth-heavy 2.0 will be supported by cloud computing and 5G mobile connectivity. Digital transformation 2.0 will revamp the enterprise ecosystem by empowering employees and further digitizing the workspace.

With these rising trends driving a highly mobile, connected workplace environment, enterprises will have to contend with new challenges and complexities in how they manage devices and people. It’s not just about being on the leading edge of technology implementation; it’s about being able to control the technology to ensure it works for you. By adopting these technologies and applying best practices to understand and effectively maximize investments, enterprises will be able to better position themselves for success in 2020 and beyond.

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