If history has taught us anything, it's that nothing turns out the way it was thought it would: the Titanic never arrived, a certain president became president and the great warrior Attila the Hun died the glorious death of a nose bleed.
The same too can be applied to financial technologies. For all the hype around current cryptocurrencies there is a high probability they'll be confined to the annals of financial history, to share the same space as Western Union, and completely overshadowed by the prevailing technology. Will that be blockchain? Blockchain almost certainly has a place in financial services - not quite in the decentralised way many zealots believe - but with a convergence of technology, with AI and Big Data lending value. Whatever technological concotion finally takes on in a practical sense will make someone very rich.
But are we neglecting a dark horse technology that is very much concluding that very convergence journey?
The quiet revolution
The Genesis point of cloud technology may well have been the emergence of VPNs and the juggling of computing resources to manage networks more efficiently circa. mid 1990s. From there, the software survivors of the dotcom boom began to use - elasticity - in all their pitches to prospective clients, and a whole host of jargon (JaaS) arose - SaaS, IaaS and PaaS.
Retail was the first to adopt cloud technology. The likes of Netflix began their migration to the cloud in 2008 when a major customer database corruption was the final straw that broke the proverbial camel's back. Ever since then, cloud technology - underpinned by robust data infrastructure - has led to exponential growth in streaming hours and, ipso facto, revenue.
Head in the sand or the cloud - the Cloud and banking
Fast forward to 2018 and the usual excuse of 'restrictive legacy technology' no longer flies with the amount of innovation happening in the banking sector, and particularly the rise of microservice ecosystems. Many banks are already migrating to the cloud, with as many as 97% of CIOs anticipating some form of cloud adoption by end of year. A huge number that suggests an overwhelming acceptance of the technology or at least, a private-public hybrid solution.
One thing is certain, cloud technology is the next wave in elastic and agile IT, capable of on-demand power. Such a capability is invaluable to banks as it is to Netflix.
What the future holds and how cloud adoption unfolds in banking is anyone's prediction. Below are those predictions.
The global financial services industry is on the cusp of a massive technological disruption. The emergence of fintech (financial technology) and regtech (regulatory technology) vendors has created a tech race for banks, helping to fast-track the innovation path for many of them.
Conversely, it has also highlighted the laggards, weighed down by legacy systems and investments, leaving them struggling to keep up with traditional bank competitors and the new fintech newcomers.
Cloud innovation is fast becoming a fundamental driver in global digital disruption and is increasingly gaining more prominence and cogency with banks. In fact, it is predicted by that 2020, a corporate no-cloud policy will become as rare as a no-internet policy is today.
Cloud, namely VDI, is one of the fastest growing solutions as CIOs quickly realise that the vast improvements in security and underlying infrastructure are paving the way to greater efficiency, reduced IT spend, and greater scalability.
In 2018, we continue to see maturing cloud technology accepted into mainstream enterprise operations.
The cloud has long been an object of scepticism in the financial services, but how genuine are those concerns when you pick through the details?
Security and data security concerns have traditionally dominated the list of reasons for lack of cloud technology adoption by banks.