IDC Predicts Steady Growth in Cloud Server Market Through 2014

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2010-05-10 Print this article Print

Based on IDC's first cloud computing survey focused exclusively on servers, the research company predicts that server revenue in the private cloud category will grow from $7.3 billion in 2009 to $11.8 billion in 2014, or about 62 percent.

IT researcher IDC reported May 10 that the combination of an aging server installed base, IT managers' increasing need to rein in virtual machines, and a general upturn in the buying environment is boosting sales of commodity-type servers used in public and private cloud-computing systems.

Based on its first cloud computing survey focused exclusively on servers, IDC predicted that server revenue in the public cloud category will grow from $582 million in 2009 to $718 million in 2014. Server revenue for the much larger private cloud market will grow from $7.3 billion to $11.8 billion [about 62 percent] in the same time period, IDC said.

Cloud, or utility, computing serves up computing power, data storage or applications from one data center location over a grid to thousands or millions of users on a subscription basis.

This general kind of cloud-for example, services of the type provided online by Amazon EC2, Google Apps and known as a public cloud, because any business or individual can subscribe.

Private cloud computing differs in that smaller, cloudlike IT systems within a firewall offer similar services, but to a closed internal network. This network may include corporate or division offices, other companies that are also business partners, raw-material suppliers, resellers, production-chain entities and other organizations intimately connected with a corporate mother ship.

The servers discussed in IDC's survey are distinguished from conventional application and Web servers by the fact that they are simpler in nature, IDC analyst Katherine Broderick told eWEEK.

The servers in the study generally have lower average prices than an enterprise x86-based server, Broderick said. "It's more about volume than value in the cloud space," she said.

The report also found that nearly half of respondents (44 percent) are considering the deployment of private clouds in their IT systems, and that public cloud services appear less likely to be broadly adopted than private clouds, Broderick said.

"It was a bit surprising to me that there is a large distinction [for] the IT decision makers between private and public [clouds]. They know the differences; they see them as very separate things," Broderick said.

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Chris Preimesberger Chris Preimesberger was named Editor-in-Chief of Features & Analysis at eWEEK in November 2011. Previously he served eWEEK as Senior Writer, covering a range of IT sectors that include data center systems, cloud computing, storage, virtualization, green IT, e-discovery and IT governance. His blog, Storage Station, is considered a go-to information source. Chris won a national Folio Award for magazine writing in November 2011 for a cover story on and CEO-founder Marc Benioff, and he has served as a judge for the SIIA Codie Awards since 2005. In previous IT journalism, Chris was a founding editor of both IT Manager's Journal and and was managing editor of Software Development magazine. His diverse resume also includes: sportswriter for the Los Angeles Daily News, covering NCAA and NBA basketball, television critic for the Palo Alto Times Tribune, and Sports Information Director at Stanford University. He has served as a correspondent for The Associated Press, covering Stanford and NCAA tournament basketball, since 1983. He has covered a number of major events, including the 1984 Democratic National Convention, a Presidential press conference at the White House in 1993, the Emmy Awards (three times), two Rose Bowls, the Fiesta Bowl, several NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, a Formula One Grand Prix auto race, a heavyweight boxing championship bout (Ali vs. Spinks, 1978), and the 1985 Super Bowl. A 1975 graduate of Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif., Chris has won more than a dozen regional and national awards for his work. He and his wife, Rebecca, have four children and reside in Redwood City, Calif.Follow on Twitter: editingwhiz

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