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11/16/2010
10:47 AM
David Linthicum
David Linthicum
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Expect Reasonable Growth for Cloud Computing

Think of cloud computing as a big bandwagon that started the parade route with a few core items on it such as SaaS, IaaS, and PaaS. However, street vendors keep tossing anything and everything onto the bandwagon as it rolls along, no matter if their products are truly cloud computing or not...

The cloud computing marketplace will reach $16.7 billion in revenue by 2013, according to a new report from the 451 Market Monitor, a market-sizing and forecasting service from The 451 Group. "Including the large and well-established software-as-a-service (SaaS) category, cloud computing will grow from revenue of $8.7bn in 2010 to $16.7bn in 2013, a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 24%."

I view these more recent forecasts to be much more in line with what I'm seeing in the market. Other firms that predict as much as $250 billion by 2015 are, in my opinion, a bit misleading.Those in the enterprise should think of cloud computing as a big bandwagon that started the parade route with a few core items on it such as SaaS, IaaS, and PaaS. However, street vendors keep tossing anything and everything onto the bandwagon as it rolls along, no matter if their products are truly cloud computing or not. Thus, when asked to report their cloud computing forecasts, major software and hardware vendors "cloud wash" most of their existing product portfolio, and thus the over-the-top forecasts were born.

Most of those in enterprise IT feel like there is a huge cloud computing party going on, and they are not invited. The truth is that cloud computing is still a relatively small but growing sector of the IT solution. To call it an "explosion" is not at all accurate, but it's clearly not going to be a flop either. It's a fundamental shift in how we consume IT resources, much like the shift to distributed computing, client/server, and Web-based systems.

The reality is that most enterprises will move to cloud computing without knowing it, in many cases. For instance, existing on-premise software systems will be phased out as most enterprises will quickly sign up for huge discounts vendors will offer to leverage SaaS versions, and the explosive need for storage will drive many an enterprise to on-demand storage solutions. The requirements lead to the use of emerging and innovative technology, more so than the hype.

The end state of cloud computing is somewhat predictable. We've seen hype create other new concepts in IT, typically based on something from the past. What ultimately happens is that the hype settles down and we begin to work with the hyped technology. Much the same occurred with client/server, EAI, data warehousing, distributed objects, etc. When we stop talking about it, we actually put it to good use.Think of cloud computing as a big bandwagon that started the parade route with a few core items on it such as SaaS, IaaS, and PaaS. However, street vendors keep tossing anything and everything onto the bandwagon as it rolls along, no matter if their products are truly cloud computing or not...

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