The race for cloud dominance
by Rupert Hodgson, sourcingfocus.com
The rise of web based software has seen a race for the market share of cloud technology. At the forefront sits Amazon, who have capitalised on their early lead in creating a set of easy to use online programs, however the market place is fiercely competitive and Google moving to end Amazon’s lead.
Behind Amazon lies Google which is playing catch up after failing to invest early in the new market, beginning development a full two years behind Amazon. Google entered the cloud market in 2008 but only began competitively marketing in 2011.
The cloud market has rapidly grown, with value expectations of $10.5 billion by 2014 from $3.7 billion in 2011, according to Gartner. Research commissioned by VMware indicates the European enterprises intend to spend nearly one-third of their IT budgets on web-based computing over the next 18 months. Microsoft, IBM and HP have all entered into the Cloud market beside Google, while Amazon have continued to maintain a strong lead with the biggest share of the cloud market.
Amazon has taken the early lead with its portfolio of web based tools including mobile applications, server renting and data storage at a highly competitive price. Amazon Web Services has attracted many companies as users and is currently used within 190 companies. Amazon’s business is rapidly approaching $1 billion in revenue.
Google have been quick to recognise there mistake and reverse its position as the company ramps up employment of engineers and marketing staff as it rolls out web-based new features. Google has already begun to narrow the gap as cloud customer numbers have so far increased by over 10 percent each month of this year.
Google despite focusing heavily on their web-based services have a long way to go in order to end Amazon’s dominance of the market. Amazon’s services are set to expand yet further with Forrester research pointing to 44 percent of companies looking to employ the service in 2012. Google on the other hand saw a 23 percent reduction of their App Engine software in 2011 from 2010.
Google’s web based services have failed to provide the same levels of flexibility and support delivered by Amazon software which has proven to be so appealing to businesses, with Google offering fewer languages or the ability to deploy customer servers. In predicting increased spending on cloud computing VMware said that organisations looked to greater flexibility that cloud services could provide.
While Google have the requisite systems and technology to provide quality cloud software they have failed to attract users away from the long established, flexible and user friendly services provided by Amazon.