Public cloud services revenue to reach $260BN in 2017 – Gartner

The worldwide public cloud services market revenue is projected to grow 18.5% in 2017 to total $260.2 billion – up from $219.6 billion in 2016 – according to Gartner, Inc.

“Final data for 2016 shows that software as a service (SaaS) revenue was far greater in 2016 than expected, reaching $48.2 billion,” said Sid Nag, research director at Gartner. “SaaS is also growing faster in 2017 than previously forecast, leading to a significant uplift in the entire public cloud revenue forecast.”

SaaS revenue is expected to grow 21% in 2017 to reach $58.6 billion (see Table 1.) The acceleration in SaaS adoption can be explained by providers delivering nearly all application functional extensions and add-ons as a service. This appeals to users because SaaS solutions are engineered to be more purpose-built and are delivering better business outcomes than traditional software is.

>See also: Managed cloud: making the most out of public cloud computing

“Strategic adoption of platform as a service (PaaS) offerings is also outperforming previous expectations, as enterprise-scale organisations are increasingly confident that PaaS will be their primary form of application development platform in the future,” said Nag. “This accounts for the remainder of the increase in this iteration of Gartner’s public cloud services revenue forecast.”

The highest revenue growth will come from cloud system infrastructure services (infrastructure as a service [IaaS]), which is projected to grow 36.6% in 2017 to reach $34.7 billion.

Table 1. Worldwide Public Cloud Services Revenue Forecast (Billions of US Dollars)

  2016 2017 2018 2019 2020
Cloud Business Process Services (BPaaS) 39.6 42.2 45.8 49.5 53.6
Cloud Application Infrastructure Services (PaaS) 9.0 11.4 14.2 17.3 20.8
Cloud Application Services (SaaS) 48.2 58.6 71.2 84.8 99.7
Cloud Management and Security Services 7.1 8.7 10.3 12.0 13.9
Cloud System Infrastructure Services (IaaS) 25.4 34.7 45.8 58.4 72.4
Cloud Advertising 90.3 104.5 118.5 133.6 151.1
Total Market 219.6 260.2 305.8 355.6 411.4

Source: Gartner October 2017

Although public cloud revenue is growing more strongly than initially forecast, Gartner still expects growth even out from 2018 onwards. This stabilisation reflects the increasingly mainstream status and maturity that public cloud services will gain within a wider IT spending mix.

>See also: How the cloud will shape infrastructure this year 

“As of 2016, approximately 17% of the total market revenue for infrastructure, middleware, application and business process services had shifted to cloud,” continued Nag. “Through 2021, this will increase to approximately 28%.”

In terms of vendor share, Gartner expects 70% of public cloud services revenue to be dominated by the top 10 public cloud providers through 2021. “In the IaaS segment, Amazon, Microsoft and Alibaba have already taken strong positions in the market,” said Nag.

“In the SaaS and PaaS segments, we are seeing cloud’s impact driving major software vendors such as Oracle, SAP and Microsoft from on-premises, licence-based software to cloud subscription models.”

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Nick Ismail

Nick Ismail is a former editor for Information Age (from 2018 to 2022) before moving on to become Global Head of Brand Journalism at HCLTech. He has a particular interest in smart technologies, AI and...

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