The growing dominance of a few cloud infrastructure players could put pressure on enterprises, argues Gartner
Gartner has warned enterprises to be wary of the growing influence of the biggest cloud infrastructure vendors, as a growing market is set to hand them an ever more dominant proportion of sales.
Cloud-based infrastructure, or Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), is the fastest growing part of the cloud market, set to grow 35.9 percent this year to $40.8 billion (£28.7bn) and to $83.5bn by 2021, Garter forecast.
It expects the broader cloud market to be worth more than $302bn by the same date.
The largest 10 providers, including Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft and Google, accounted for half of all infrastructure sales in 2016, a figure set to rise to 70 percent by 2021.
That could pose problems for their clients, for whom a competitive market is preferable, Gartner said.
“The increasing dominance of the hyperscale IaaS providers creates enormous opportunities and challenges for users and other market participants,” said Gartner research director Sid Nag. “While it enables efficiencies and cost benefits, organisations need to be cautious about IaaS providers potentially gaining unchecked influence over customers and the market.”
As a result enterprises are likely to increasingly seek to run workloads across infrastructure from multiple providers, something Nag said could influence providers’ policies.
“Organisations will increasingly demand a simpler way to move workloads, applications and data across cloud providers’ IaaS offerings without penalties,” he said.
Cloud apps on the rise
Cloud-based software remains the largest single market segment, with $73.6bn in forecast revenues this year, up 22.2 percent on 2017.
Gartner said cloud software’s growing popularity could see it account for 45 percent of total spending on application software by the end of the forecast period, with estimated revenues at that time of $117.1bn.
Nag added that cloud software users are increasingly looking for more “purpose-built” offerings designed with specific ends in mind.
Databases are the fastest growing area of cloud-based platforms, with estimated sales of $10bn by 2021, with Oracle and Microsoft the top vendors, increasingly challenged by AWS. Cloud platform sales are estimated at $15bn this year and $27.3bn by 2021.
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