Predictions 2017: Trump ♥️ tech, containers take over, Microsoft buys Red Hat

As if 2016 weren’t volatile enough for the technology industry, the coming year is likely to be even more, shall we say, interesting, thanks to everything from a very unpredictable new U.S. president to a confluence of major trends ranging from artificial intelligence to virtual reality to the continued rise of the cloud. This is the first in a series of predictions by SiliconANGLE’s staff on what’s coming in 2017, especially in enterprise and emerging technologies.

Donald Trump becomes the tech industry’s best friend

About the only thing you can say for sure about President-elect Donald Trump is that he is unpredictable. After blasting technology companies for shipping jobs overseas during the presidential campaign, Donald Trump will surprise everyone by reversing position and becoming the tech industry’s best friend. Meetings with tech industry leaders persuade the incoming president that technology is actually the most powerful engine fueling the economy and could even — how shall we put this? — make America great again.

Containers take over the enterprise

The popularity of containers, or software that can quickly run programs in multiple computing environments, will surge in enterprise environments, stoked by their advantages of speed, flexibility and scalability. Originally conceived primarily as software development vehicles, container technology will begin to displace virtualization on a grand scale in production environments. Concerns about management and security dissipate as vendors and open-source developers fill the void.

Microsoft buys Red Hat

Having crept cautiously into open source over the past two years, Microsoft Corp. leaps in with both feet to buy open-source software bellwether Red Hat Inc., becoming the world’s largest vendor of both proprietary and open-source operating systems. For a little over half the $26 billion Microsoft paid for LinkedIn, the acquisition makes Microsoft a front-line vendor in the new breed of hyper-scale data centers for public and hybrid clouds and adds enterprise-class Linux for its Azure cloud. It also puts rivals ranging from Dell EMC’s VMware to Amazon Web Service on notice that the software giant is on the move.

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