Don't be fooled: The cloud will be here quicker than you think

While cloud computing remains a small but fast growing component of tech spending, it is likely to develop in ways technology chiefs will not expect.

Although use of cloud services is growing faster than the overall enterprise IT market, it is still a small part of overall IT spending.

But while just 38 percent of organisations are using cloud services today, tech decision maker shouldn't take this as sign that the cloud will only see limited usage in enterprise.

Around 80 percent of the 651 organisations across nine countries surveyed said they plan to move applications to the cloud within 12 months, according to the research by analyst Gartner.

"Given that the use of cloud services currently constitutes only a very small part of the vast enterprise IT market, strategic planners should not make the mistake of taking current cloud use cases to be predictors of future cloud use," said Gartner research director Gregor Petri, in a statement.

The research found that 60 per cent of organisations plan increased their cloud services spending over the next two years to five years, with only six percent planning to decrease investments in cloud.

Gartner said business usage of cloud will grow first through its application to specific problems rather than big infrastructure project. As businesses move from early usage of infrastructure as a service (Iaas) through to business process services the impact will become wider and wider.

"While rehosting, recoding or recompiling existing applications to run on IaaS or platform as a service (PaaS) cloud services may have limited impact on the rest of the organisation, replacing existing applications with higher level cloud services will have a much bigger impact on the way organisations organise their business processes to serve their customers," said Petri.

Different apps may also have different timescales for moving to the cloud, Gartner said depending on how essential they are to the business and their complexity: "In some cases, highly critical and complex applications may actually be the first to be moved to cloud computing, especially if those applications are broadly used and thus form an attractive provider opportunity."


Steve Ranger is the UK editor of TechRepublic, and has been writing about the impact of technology on people, business and culture for more than a decade. Before joining TechRepublic he was the editor of

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