Some of the most interesting innovations in the data center industry border on the futuristic — while some could be realistic for the average company.

Microsoft, for instance, submerged an encased data center in the ocean as an energy-efficient cooling alternative, an innovation that may be years from widespread adoption.

However, Apple, earlier this year, announced that it was using wastewater treatment water instead of tap water for its data centers, saving nearly 5 million gallons a year. In that case, the mayor of Prineville, Oregon, noted that it could pave the way for other company data centers to use wastewater as a resource.

Here are a few more innovations that could prove realistic for widespread adoption in 2017 and beyond.

Vertical data center design. Google is among the companies exploring data center designs that are going vertical, instead of the traditional horizontal design. With cloud computing gaining momentum, building a four-story data center for server farms is a more feasible option. As a result, companies will be able to hold more servers without a significant footprint.

Cybersecurity innovations. With the global data center security market expected to hit $17.84 billion in sales by 2022, it makes sense that security will see its share of innovations. Artificial intelligence is currently being explored as a possibility of detecting variations in behavior that could be an indicator of an impending cyber attack.

While there are concerns, it could be among the innovations explored for this segment of the industry. Speaking of artificial intelligence, Google has already successfully used AI to significantly reduce energy consumption.

Micro data centers. To meet increasing demand for Internet of Things (IoT) and mobile computing, more companies are relying on micro data centers to deliver content closer to the edge, improving experiences for consumers throughout the nation.

About Tony Johnson

Innovative helps you balance your business requirements, service levels, staff and infrastructure to make your IT as effective as possible. Tony Johnson is Vice President of Operations at Innovative and has been helping clients optimize their IT spend and operations since 1983.

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