Cloud Adoption Ahead of Schedule to Reach 500 Million in 2012: IHS
IHS iSuppli found consumer adoption of cloud services to have passed 375 million users in June, putting the market 75 percent of the way toward its year-end estimate of 500 million.Consumer adoption of cloud storage services is exceeding expectations, according to an Oct. 15 report from IHS iSuppli. By the end of June, the research firm found personal subscriptions to such services to have exceeded 375 million users—a figure that put the market already 75 percent of the way toward IHS' full-year estimate of 500 million users. Because of the relative newness of cloud technologies, no adoption figures exist for 2011, according to IHS, though best guesses are around 150 million. IHS expects subscriptions to climb to 625 million by 2013 and then to double over the next four years, reaching 1.3 billion subscribers by 2017. “The cloud is a game-changer in an age of near-ubiquitous mobile broadband, offering benefits to consumers and cloud service providers alike,” Jagdish Rebello, director for consumer and communications at IHS, said in an Oct. 15 statement. "For consumers, cloud services are intended to manage and store user-generated data or purchased content, such as music, ebooks, pictures or videos," Rebello continued. "The content can then be seamlessly accessed and synced across devices like smartphones, media tablets and PCs. Meanwhile, technology companies are looking at the cloud as a way to generate revenue.”
Indeed, Apple, Microsoft, Google, Amazon and others are heavily investing in cloud infrastructure and services, which they offer to consumers, IHS notes, at the same cost or lower costs than those of pure-play providers such as Dropbox, Mozy, Carbonite and SugarSync. To compete, the latter have developed "freemium" models in which they give away a few gigabytes of free storage, pulling in users who likely go on to pay for more.