As the overused trope says, it is all just a
dream king-sized site switch. Yet with Hyperforce there is a lot for us to be excited about, even if, when all goes as planned, end users will probably not be able to tell the difference.
So what is it about?
Simple. Salesforce is in the business of releasing transformative software, not so much in the business of managing data centers. However, until now they have been managing all those pods that used to be front and center in every URL. You have seen them. For instance, NA159 is in North America, CS92 is for sandboxes, and orgs in GS0 are the special pre-release orgs that get the releases before the release notes come out.
What are they going to do?
In an ironic and very welcome turn of affairs, Salesforce is going to move their infrastructure to the cloud. Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform will be part of the architecture. This allows them to cover thorny compliance aspects like data residency, which happens to be the rage in certain jurisdictions (*cough* Europe *cough*).
When is it happening?
The change is already happening: new orgs are already built on top of Hyperforce, and other orgs are being converted over time, with an automated process that seems to be as disruptive as a site switch. While the timeline is still vague, the conversion should be completed within four years.
If it is a purely technological change, no one will really notice it, and it may be complete by the time we are done with the next Olympics... why can it be such a big deal? A very powerful idea: in the long run, this has the potential to alter the economics of the platform.
We have governor limits that ensure that no one hoards shared resources. Try to put yourself in Salesforce's shoes. What is Astro's shoe size, by the way? When your platform is built on physical data centers, capacity is very rigid, and you need to police it with very clear limits to avoid congestion and service degradation. If you build on top of cloud infrastructure, however, capacity can change and adapt quickly. Thus, it would not be far fetched to imagine that, at some point within the next decade, we could see a flexibilization of governor limits that includes surcharges, variable pricing for the usage of resources, or even the guaranteed isolation of certain orgs.
...because when you are in the cloud, the sky is the limit. See what I did there? 🙂