Most people no longer need to be convinced that cloud computing is the next big thing in enterprise technology, and there’s still plenty of room for all players involved to grow, according to a new analysis from Gartner out Thursday.
In 2018, cloud computing — which for the purposes of this discussion includes all the aaSes, infrastructure, platform, and software — will be a $186.4 billion market, Gartner predicted. That’s a 21 percent jump compared to $153.5 billion in 2017, led by cloud infrastructure services like Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure, which should grow 35 percent in 2018 to $40.8 billion.
SaaS is still the largest overall cloud category, which makes sense as a generation of enterprise software installed on on-premises servers converts over to cloud-based services. The SaaS market should hit $73.6 billion in 2018, up 22.2 percent, and there’s still lots of room to grow here as well: Gartner thinks only 45 percent of total application software spending will be SaaS-based by 2021.
At last year’s GeekWire Cloud Tech Summit, Morgan Stanley’s Brian Nowak saw cloud computing “at an inflection point,” where growth was poised to accelerate as cloud vendors started pushing deeper beyond the early adopters into the mainstream of the information technology services market. He predicted that cloud services would account for 50 percent of the market by 2020, at which point growth would likely start to slow down.
But it doesn’t look like there will be any slowdown in 2018, and we’ll get a better sense of how the first quarter of the year went for cloud service providers as corporate earnings results start to trickle in over the next couple of weeks.
Here’s a video of Brian’s presentation from last year’s Cloud Tech Summit: