To the Cloud! (FORECAST)

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Cloud computing will continue to reshape the IT landscape over the next five years, according to IDC, as spending on public IT cloud services expands at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 27.6%, from $21.5 billion in 2010 to $72.9 billion in 2015.

"Cloud services are interconnected with and accelerated by other disruptive technologies, including mobile devices, wireless networks, big data analytics, and social networking," said Frank Gens, senior vice president and chief analyst at IDC. "Together, these technologies are merging into the industry's third major platform for long-term growth. As during the mainframe and PC eras, the new platform promises to radically expand the users and uses of information technology, leading to a wide and entirely new variety of intelligent industry solutions."

Additional findings from IDC's research include:

- In 2015, public cloud services will account for 46% of net new growth in overall IT spending in five key product categories – applications, application development and deployment, systems infrastructure software, basic storage, and servers.

- Software-oriented cloud services (SaaS) will account for roughly three quarters of all spending on public cloud IT services throughout the forecast. Spending on hardware-oriented cloud services (servers and storage clouds) will be largely driven by SaaS providers building out their infrastructure.

- The United States will dominate overall spending throughout the forecast period, with nearly 50% of all public IT cloud services revenues coming from the U.S. in 2015. But regions outside the U.S. will show much stronger growth as cloud services adoption accelerates. In particular, IDC found that there are more cloud services vendors and greater end user spending in Asia/Pacific and Western Europe than previously thought.

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