January 27, 2012
Cloud services have become a more mainstream IT solution as more enterprises have transferred infrastructure, applications and backup tasks to the cloud. However, while many businesses are already gaining the cloud's cost-cutting, efficiency-boosting benefits, experts predict the cloud market will extend further during the next few years.
According to market research firm Strategy Analytics, increased cloud adoption is a result of more diverse offerings, such as Software-as-a-Service, Platform-as-a-Service and Infrastructure-as-a-Service. The firm recently released three reports, each detailing a specific service model. Additionally, the source forecasts global expenditures for cloud-based services to expand from $31 billion in 2011 to $82 billion in 2016.
"With demonstrated cost savings and diminished security fears, all three types of cloud services - SaaS, IaaS and PaaS - are growing rapidly due to cloud computing's cost saving opportunities and diminished security concerns. Cloud computing offers compelling alternatives to CEOs, CFOs and operations managers who are reviewing IT and data center budgets," said Andrew Brown, director of enterprise practice at Strategy Analytics.
Sue Rudd, the company's director of service provider analysis, said more enterprises will begin transitioning business applications to the mobile cloud environment, as smartphones and tablets are increasingly common in the workplace.
The rise of cloud computing is due to a variety of factors, but some experts say the main reasons enterprises are attracted to the cloud is its ability to provide more agility for a smaller price. In a recent Network World report, columnist and IT professional Bernard Golden said IT departments are generally focused on costs, and if all other factors are created equal, the business solution with the lowest cost will almost always win out.
With cloud computing, enterprises receive a low-cost, scalable and efficient solution to several IT functions, depending on which services are purchased. Golden added that cost and agility aren't mutually exclusive, as both depend on automation.
-McAfee Cloud Security