Driven by rising adoption of emerging technologies like Big Data, IoT and AI across e-governance platforms, sector′s revenue to exceed $16 billion by 2024.
When Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched a national e-Governance plan known as e-Kranti in April 2015, it marked the beginning of Digital India 2.0 - a programme meant to transform e-governance in India.
But little did anyone envision at that time that the biggest challenge and utility for the programme would arise in 2020, thanks to the Covid-19 pandemic. The damage wrought by the virus has put to test India's emergent e-governance and digital welfare infrastructure, as well as its capacity for technological innovation - with implications of its response weighing in heavily on India's e-governance design and development. The surging utility and effectiveness of e-governance platforms against the backdrop of the pandemic comes at a time when India has set one of the best examples of connectivity, empowering citizens to deal with the Covid-19 crisis. With more than 1.1 billion mobile subscribers, industry aggregators have estimated that more than 80 per cent of India's population has been engaged in meaningful transactions during the pandemic via data and telecom networks.
India's National Digital Communications Policy has focused on the convergence of a cluster of revolutionary technologies including 5G, along with a growing start-up community, to accelerate and deepen digital engagement. While 5G networks promise to make Digital India a faster reality by supporting e-governance, smart-cities, online education, e-health, smart farming and more, it has coincided with the Fourth Industrial Revolution and increased government spending on new e-governance projects based on cloud technology - thereby greatly boosting cloud adoption in the forthcoming years.
Rising adoption of emerging technologies along with the focus of both government and private sector enterprises on cost reduction and operation scalability, is expected to boost the digital infrastructure as well as cloud adoption in India.
For instance, India's thrust towards 'Digital India' will result in increased spending towards cloud services to advance digital business procedures.
“Growing adoption of public cloud offerings and the development of cloud-native applications are the major factors driving the demand for cloud-based solutions and services,” said Anshuma Singh, technology analyst at GlobalData.
According to the data consultancy, rising adoption of emerging technologies like Big Data, Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR), along with the focus of both government and private sector enterprises on cost reduction and operation scalability, is expected to boost the digital infrastructure as well as cloud adoption in India - with the result that overall spending on cloud computing in India is set to cross $16.5 billion by 2024.
The sector has therefore emerged as a significantly lucrative one for investors, with infrastructure as a service (IAAS) being the fastest-growing segment in the public cloud offerings and boasting a CAGR of 8.7 per cent during the forecast period 2019-2024. This growth will be driven by the increasing preference of enterprises to migrate their application and workloads from on-premises data centers to the cloud solutions to leverage IT effectively.
Additionally, India plans to launch a national artificial intelligence program by the end of 2020.The National Institution for Transforming India (NITI) Aayog further proposes the establishment of a cloud computing platform known as AI Research, Analytics, and Knowledge Assimilation platform (AIRAWAT) - creating yet more opportunities for the deployment of cloud services in the near future.
A large number of government enterprises and private institutions such as the Ministry of Human Resource & Development, MyGov.in, the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE) and National Association for Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM), have already leveraged cloud-based offerings to build public services and design solutions to address problems particular to global pandemic situations.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has created new growth opportunities for cloud vendors. The availability of innovative and scalable cloud-based solutions to cater to the diverse enterprise requirements has provided an opportunity for cloud vendors to further scale-up their offerings to enable enterprises to function normally without any service disruptions. Cloud adoptions will grow in the near future with the proliferation of start-up ecosystem, along with solutions being built by leveraging emerging technologies like AI, AR/VR and blockchain on the cloud platforms,” said Singh.