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Cloud services to be the bedrock of a $1tn market in three years

Total worldwide spending on cloud services, the hardware and software components underpinning them and the professional and managed services around cloud services will surpass $1 trillion in 2024, with the ongoing pandemic now driving the market, according to analyst IDC.

The analyst house said the cloud market would be sustained by a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 15.7%.

"Cloud in all its permutations – hardware/software/services/as-a-service as well as public/private/hybrid/multi/edge – will play ever greater, and even dominant, roles across the IT industry for the foreseeable future," said IDC analyst Richard Villars. "By the end of 2021, based on lessons learned in the pandemic, most enterprises will put a mechanism in place to accelerate their shift to cloud-centric digital infrastructure and application services twice as fast as before the pandemic."

The strongest growth in cloud revenues will come in the as-a-service category, across both public shared cloud services and dedicated private cloud services. This category, which is also the largest category in terms of overall revenues, is forecast to deliver a five-year CAGR of 21%. By 2024, the as-a-service category will account for more than 60% of all cloud revenues worldwide.

The services category, which includes cloud-related professional services and cloud-related management services, will be the second largest category in terms of revenue but will experience the slowest growth with an 8.3% CAGR. This is due to a variety of factors, including greater use of automation in cloud migrations.

The smallest cloud category, infrastructure build, which includes hardware, software and support for enterprise private clouds and service provider public clouds, will enjoy “solid growth” (11.1% CAGR) over the forecast period, said IDC.

IDC added: “The adoption of cloud services should enable organisations to shift IT from maintenance of legacy IT to new digital transformation initiatives, which can lead to new business revenue and competitiveness as well as create new opportunities for suppliers of professional services.”