Data Centre Predictions for 2020 Top 5

by Richard Jones, 1 January 2020

What can we expect in Data Centres in 2020?

With emerging technologies, IOT, 5G and Cloud computing generating so much data we are seeing the real possibility of  data that we produce this spiralling out of control. With a the looming threat of a climate crisis what does the next year have in store for the Data Centre world, let us look at that with some predictions.

Running Out of Data Centre Space

This is a real possibility, the amount of data we produce each day is staggering and only going one way, up! In the UK some data centres are already at capacity especially the London inner city ones who are land locked and cannot expand their facilities, which is where we are seeing growth in out of town locations.

Also there is a genuine skills shortage that is starting to become more visible in the construction sector, so even though DC operators may have the cash to go and build new sites this could be slowed by supply of qualified trades to actually erect them which will have a significant effect operators ability to match demand.

Serverless Architecture

Don’t be fooled by the title ‘serverless architecture’ there still has to be a physical server somewhere. The way to look at this is the provisioning of servers are put into the hands of the cloud providers rather than the vendors. This is based on cost rather than pre-purchased computing capacity.

This serveless approach uses code to access data and execute tasks uploaded to the vendors ecosystem. This tends to make it cheaper than the traditional approach and much more scaleable with a better user experience.


Large connectivity providers are pouring huge resources into upgrading their infrastructure. In 2020 we will see the roll-out of the gigbit enhanced network, there are new node sites popping up around the UK all the time to support 5G. This will revolutionise the way we work, live and play.

We will have access to 1 Gigabit broadband speeds soon at home and work, which will allow us to download an Ultra High Definition 4K film at a dramatically higher rate, and use multiple streaming devices at the same time. It opens up a world of possibilities, including cloud-based gaming, 8K streaming, remote health telemonitoring and advanced telepresence, which could enable consumers to go ‘virtual reality shopping’ or watch live broadcasts of holographic sports events.

Cooling Technologies

Energy prices are due to increase 10% year on year as a result of cost of the per kilowatt hour as demand increases. High power users such as data centres need to keep a close eye on this. There will be a shift towards liquid based cooling and just for the bigger players with huge budgets, but the smaller enterprise deployments will benefit from this way of cooling as it is considered more efficient than air cooling.

Increased security in Edge Data Centres

Edge data centres – smaller facilities located at the edge of a network to enable faster cloud services – are becoming more and more common. Where businesses and consumers prioritise speed of service, the requirement for low latency is high because it can act as a service differentiator. This is why local data centres are springing up closer to the users and applications to accelerate their experience. For example, hospitals and driverless cars depend on near-zero latency for data that needs to be immediately processed.

But there will be a serious knock-on effect in 2020: the physical security of data centres. The larger cloud data centres have thumb print security, iris scanning, security guards etc. But with edge, you might have a containerised solution and the network is far less secure – perhaps with the bare minimum physical security because there will be too many facilities to protect. Edge is only growing in popularity, but businesses need to bear in mind the associated risks.

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