No longer a brand new technology, cloud computing is entering its “young adult years,” according to a Forrester report. The cloud does not function simply as a temporary server anymore, with innovative analytics, machine learning, messaging, Internet of Things (IoT) capabilities, and database services all integrated today, said the report.

SEE: Vendor comparison: Microsoft Azure, Amazon AWS, and Google Cloud (Tech Pro Research)

As the cloud comes of age, its been used as the jumping off point for many digital transformation efforts within companies, especially as it moves outside of the data center. Here Forrester’s five predictions for cloud computing in 2019:

1. Enterprise spending will increase

The six cloud giants–Alibaba, Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google, IBM, Microsoft Azure, and Oracle–will continue expanding in 2019, according to the report. The global cloud computing market is expected to surpass $200 billion in 2019, with companies increasing spending to update aging legacy applications, said the report.

2. Container, Kubernetes (K8s), and serverless will transform core enterprise applications

Enterprise container adoption increased dramatically in 2018, according to the report, and will only continue as companies try to reinvigorate legacy apps. With cloud-native source components, companies will begin introducing digital application platforms geared towards modernization, Forrester predicted. The most popular trend in 2019 will be making K8s easier to manage, monitor, upgrade, and secure, added the report.

3. New approaches to private cloud

More structure will be coming to cloud management, said the report, with three main avenues companies can take. The first option is for the organization to build the system itself with vSphere and developer-focused tools, said the report. The second option is to have the system built for you, with converged software stacks. Companies could also build the system with OpenStack and use their own team’s capabilities, the report said.

SEE: AWS re:Invent 2018: A guide for tech and business pros (free PDF) (TechRepublic)

4. Platform as a Service (PaaS) strategies will consider experiences over time

In 2019, enterprises will decide whether to leverage PaaS specific to a cloud provider, or to just operate on cloud neutrality, said the report. Regardless of the approach, the company will have to constantly check and reevaluate its progress, making sure the process it used on day one is still relevant and helpful on day two, added the report.

5. Software as a Service (SaaS)-based industry systems will gain popularity

SaaS industry and integration will merge in 2019, Forrester predicted, connecting organizations in real time. SAP, for example, could decrease the multi-customer aspect of SAP Digital Manufacturing Cloud and form a more efficient and agile system for manufacturers that need to change suppliers in real time because of external forces, the report added.

The big takeaways for tech leaders:

  • As cloud ages, its abilities and functionality in the enterprise will become even better and more integrated. — Forrester, 2018
  • More cloud spending, new private cloud strategies, and SaaS-based apps all occupy the future functionality of cloud technologies. — Forrester, 2018