Cloud Computing a Major Driver for Future IT Spending: IDC

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2011-10-21

Confirming what those who follow IT development already know, industry researcher IDC reported Oct. 21 that cloud computing will be a key driver of net new IT spending over the next five years.

This spending push will happen because public cloud service providers and adopters of private cloud environments all need to invest in various supporting infrastructures, IDC said in a new forecast entitled "Worldwide Enterprise Storage for Public and Private Cloud 2011-2015-Forecast: Enabling Public Cloud Service Providers and Private Clouds."

Overall spending by public cloud service providers on storage hardware, software and professional services will increase at a compound annual growth rate of 23.6 percent from 2010 to 2015, IDC said, while enterprise spending on storage for the private cloud will experience a CAGR of 28.9 percent.

By 2015, combined spending for public and private cloud storage will be $22.6 billion worldwide, said Richard Villars, IDC vice president of storage systems and executive strategies.

"Despite current economic uncertainties, IDC expects cloud service providers-both public and private-to be among the most expansive spenders on IT products and services as they continue to build out their facilities worldwide and expand their service options," Villars said.

IDC and virtually all other IT analysts and industry watchers have acknowledged that the most significant driver of storage consumption over the past three years has been the emergence of public cloud-based application and infrastructure providers.

"Many of these cloud-based service providers (e.g., iTunes, Netflix, YouTube, Facebook) act as content depots, which are primarily in the business of gathering, organizing and providing access to large quantities of digital content," Villars said.

Meanwhile, other cloud-based service providers have emerged with a focus on delivering IT infrastructure and applications in an 'as a service' model (such as, WebEx Connect, Amazon Web Services and others).

"Over the past several years, these companies have undertaken massive storage build-outs as they have expanded their service offerings, entered new markets and extended their geographic reach," Villars said.

IDC also pointed out five information requirements that are driving current storage demands:

  • enabling more efficient delivery of information/applications to Internet-based customers;  

  • reducing upfront infrastructure investment levels (i.e., cutting the cost and time associated with deploying new IT and compute infrastructure);

  • minimizing internal IT infrastructure investment associated with "bursty" or unpredictable workloads;

  • lowering and/or distributing the ongoing costs associated with long-term archiving of information; and 

  • enabling near-continuous, real-time analysis of large volumes and wide varieties of customer-, partner-, and machine-generated data ("big data").


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