Οικονομική ανάλυση στην παροχή υπηρεσιών και συστημάτων υπολογιστικού νέφους
Financial Analysis in Cloud computing systems and services
Σταμάτη, Χριστίνα Ν.
Cloud computing23 has been the biggest and most disruptive force in the tech market over the past 15 years and adoption is accelerating. With approximately 90% of businesses using the cloud to some degree (95%, according to RightScale’s 2016 State of the Cloud Survey), it's safe to say the technology has become a mainstay in IT. The public cloud is generally the most well-known and straightforward type and, according to Forrester, offers the “purest expression of cloud's promise” of elastic scalability, self-service, and financial flexibility. Public cloud platforms take several forms, primarily IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-Service), PaaS (Platform-as-a-Service), and SaaS (Software-as-a-Service), the most widely adopted of these. Forrester’s definition of cloud combines elements of IaaS and PaaS, and generally, a natural continued blurring is occurring and is expected to persist. Keeping in mind differences in segmentation and definition, major market research firms Gartner, IDC, and Forrester all predict healthy growth for the cloud market, ranging from 16.5% CAGR (Gartner) to 28.2% (IDC)151 over the forecast period through 2020, although a flattening of yearly growth is also projected. Gartner’s public cloud services forecast (June 2016) predicts revenue rising to $382 billion by 2020. IDC (June 2016)151 forecasts the public cloud IaaS market to more than triple over the next five years, from $12.6 billion in 2015 to $43.6 billion in 2020. Forrester (September 2016)57 predicts that the public cloud market will reach $236 billion by 2020127, growing from $68 billion in 2014. The market for cloud IaaS has consolidated significantly around the two leading service providers – AWS and Microsoft (#1 and 2, respectively) – that have separated further from the pack. AWS remains “in a league of its own,” almost three times the size of its nearest competitor and with a clear lead. For full-year 2015, Synergy reports AWS share was 31%, followed by Microsoft (9%), IBM (7%), Google (4%), and Salesforce (4%). The dominance of the top vendors39, AWS in particular, is expected to continue in the next few years, but it would be hasty to count others out of the picture. Microsoft is seen as having come a long way in the cloud IaaS, and Azure is central to the company’s “mobile first, cloud first” strategy54. IDC marked 2015 as the beginning of large-scale enterprise interest in public cloud IaaS, and movement toward the cloud appears to be strong. Gartner has said that cloud computing will be one of the “most disruptive forces of IT spending since the early days of the digital age.”56 Top drivers of cloud adoption revolve around improving resource utilization and staff productivity, cost management, and analytics expansion. Barriers to cloud adoption remain, but they are shifting. Security is still top of mind to many, but it is not always the primary issue anymore. Lack of resources/expertise is now the #1 cloud challenge, according to a RightScale survey, and there are issues around integration53 and overall confusion. Among key cloud computing trends28 to watch are enterprise app migrations, microservice-based app designs, open source (including containers), and multi-cloud architectures. This postgraduate dissertation aims to provide an extended description of the most popular cloud Vendors and their products and also make comparisons among them based on several criteria such as strategy, sales tactics, Go-to-Market approach and pricing. They will be also a focus on the economics of cloud, the pricing of the different cloud products and solutions available and the total cost of ownership for a customer to move to cloud.