Worldwide public cloud services to grow

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The worldwide public cloud services market is projected to grow 18 percent this year, to total $246.8 billion, up from $209.2 billion in 2016, according to Gartner Inc., an information technology research and advisory company. The highest growth will come from cloud system infrastructure services (infrastructure as a service [IaaS]), which is projected to grow 36.8 percent in 2017 to reach $34.6 billion. Cloud application services (software as a service [SaaS]) is expected to grow 20.1 percent to reach $46.3 billion (see Table 1.)

“The overall global public cloud market is entering a period of stabilization, with its growth rate peaking at 18 percent in 2017 and then tapering off over the next few years,” said Sid Nag, research director at Gartner. “While some organizations are still figuring out where cloud actually fits in their overall IT strategy, an effort to cost optimize and bring forth the path to transformation holds strong promise and results for IT outsourcing (ITO) buyers. Gartner predicts that through 2020, cloud adoption strategies will influence more than 50 percent of IT outsourcing deals.”

“Organizations are pursuing strategies because of the multidimensional value of cloud services, including values such as agility, scalability, cost benefits, innovation and business growth,” Nag said. “While all external-sourcing decisions will not result in a virtually automatic move to the cloud, buyers are looking to the ‘cloud first’ in their decisions, in support of time-to-value impact via speed of implementation.”

The SaaS market is expected to see a slightly slower growth over the next few years with increasing maturity of SaaS offerings, namely human capital management (HCM) and customer relationship management (CRM) and the acceleration in the buying of financial applications. Nevertheless, SaaS will remain the second largest segment in the global cloud services market.

“As enterprise application buyers are moving toward a cloud-first mentality, we estimate that more than 50 percent of new 2017 large-enterprise North American application adoptions will be composed of SaaS or other forms of cloud-based solutions,” Nag said. “Midmarket and small enterprises are even further along the adoption curve. By 2019, more than 30 percent of the 100 largest vendors’ new software investments will have shifted from cloud-first to cloud-only.”

Gartner predicts more cloud growth in the infrastructure compute service space as adoption becomes increasingly mainstream. Additional demand from the migration of infrastructure to the cloud and increased demand from increasingly compute-intensive workloads (such as artificial intelligence [AI], analytics and Internet of Things [IoT]) — both in the enterprise and startup spaces — are driving this growth. Furthermore, the growth of platform as a service (PaaS) is also driving the growth in adoption of IaaS.

From a regional perspective, China’s IaaS cloud market forecast has been increased to account for anticipated higher buyer demand over the forecast period. In particular, the larger pure-play IaaS providers in China, as well as other telecom-related cloud providers driving this market, are reporting significant growth. While China’s cloud service market is nascent and several years behind the U.S. and European markets, it is expected to maintain high levels of growth as digital transformation becomes more mainstream over the next five years.

Gartner clients can read more in the reports: “Forecast Analysis: Public Cloud Services, Worldwide, 4Q16 Update” and “Forecast: Public Cloud Services, Worldwide, 2014-2020, 4Q16 Update.”

The outlook for the cloud market will be further discussed at the Gartner IT Infrastructure, Operations & Data Center Summits 2017 in Sao Paulo, Brazil, Mumbai, India, Sydney, Australia, and at the Gartner Data Center, Infrastructure and Operations Management Summit London and Las Vegas. Follow news and updates from these events on Twitter using #GartnerDC.

This topic will also be discussed at the Gartner IT Operations Strategies & Solutions Summit 2017 taking place May 8-10 in Orlando and at the Gartner IT Infrastructure & Operations Management Summit 2017, June 12-13 in Frankfurt, Germany. Follow news and updates from these events on Twitter using #GartnerIOM.

Gartner Inc. (NYSE: IT) is an information technology research and advisory company which delivers technology-related insight necessary for clients to make the right decisions, every day. From CIOs and senior information technology (IT) leaders in corporations and government agencies, to business leaders in high-tech and telecom enterprises and professional services firms, to supply chain professionals, digital marketing professionals and technology investors, Gartner is a partner to clients in more than 10,000 distinct enterprises. Gartner works with clients to research, analyze and interpret the business of IT within the context of their individual roles. Gartner is headquartered in Stamford, Connecticut. Visit gartner.com.

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