IT and technology has come a long way in the past ten years. Constant innovation has led to lots of new consumer products and made commercial operations simpler and more efficient. In fact, the way that businesses rely completely on technology now for everyday operations is new; most communications are now conducted online instead of over the telephone or in writing.
Perhaps the most significant change in the past decade isn’t the invention of the internet – which of course started changing the way we do business long before – but our reliance on it. There is now increasing demand for data centre space all over the world as online companies try to manage colossal amounts of data in transactions, messages and streaming services. We expect everything instantly, whether it’s a Twitter response or to download a film.
This reliance of technology and data centres has unfortunately cast shadows over some organisations. If a bank’s online banking service goes down or consumers can’t get onto a website for a few hours then it makes national news. This means companies have to be extra careful to avoid downtime – or face the consequences.
Let’s take a look at some facts about the internet and how much the online realm has developed in the last decade.
The total number of websites on the web in 2002 and 2012 is vastly different. In those ten years, websites jumped from 3 million to 555 million!
In the past decade, everything has moved over to digital – including storage. In 2006, there was no such thing as Dropbox or the cloud. Now, Dropbox has reported surpassing 500 million users, while iCloud has over 782 million.
In 2006, businesses were just starting to explore digital marketing strategies and how to advertise to online users. In 2012, Google Adwords was making $100 million a day from PPC advertising. And with 63,000 searches now made every second on the search engine, it’s no surprise that businesses are using this as a valuable marketing strategy.
During the last decade a new type of global currency was released in the form of Bitcoin. People have been trading bitcoins since 2009, although it is rare for online businesses to accept the currency. However other electronic cash transfer programmes are still popular, such as PayPal.
Because so much of a business’ processes rely on the internet, the IT department spends most of the time in this area. While IT technicians still deal with internal software, they also mostly focus on servers, networks and other online issues – and that’s a huge change from 10 and 20 years ago.