The Cloud’s Silver Linings and Challenges

Cloud challenges

1 - The Cloud's Silver Linings and ChallengesThe Cloud’s Silver Linings and Challenges

Cloud usage is pervasive. As the balance of cloud computing power shifts between vendors, we look at the opportunities and challenges ahead.

2 - Cloud Usage Is PervasiveCloud Usage Is Pervasive

Almost all organizations surveyed (93%) are using at least one cloud service. The top three most-used cloud services are Web hosting (76%), email hosting (56%) and cloud storage/file-sharing (53%). Only about a third of organizations are using online backup and recovery, but this type of cloud service is expected to undergo the most growth in the next 12 months.

3 - Growth of Cloud ServicesGrowth of Cloud Services

An average of 20% of IT services are cloud-based today, but this is expected to increase to 34% in the next two to three years. In fact, 30% of organizations anticipate that more than half their IT services will be cloud-based in two to three years.

4 - Benefit of Cloud AdoptionBenefit of Cloud Adoption

Almost 70% of IT pros polled list protection against local disasters and a lack of special hardware and software to maintain as the most significant benefits of cloud-based services. High availability (62%), scalability (54%) and ease of management (51%) were ranked as the next big three benefits.

5 - Barriers to Cloud AdoptionBarriers to Cloud Adoption

Speed and latency issues are the biggest barriers (60%), followed by bandwidth requirements (58%); the lack of control over infrastructure and security are tied for third place at 52%. Risk of service outage or degradation comes in a close fourth (51%).

6 - Cloud Factors ConsideredCloud Factors Considered

A full 71% cited cost, followed by reliability/service guarantees (58%), data security controls (41%) and customer support (32%).

7 - Cloud Service PurchasingCloud Service Purchasing

The top three activities IT buyers rely on the most when researching cloud services include product trials (63%), product reviews (55%) and peer recommendations (48%).

8 - The Battle for IaaS ShareThe Battle for IaaS Share

Microsoft Azure is the most commonly used (16%), followed by Amazon Web Services (AWS) at 13%. Azure is also expected to see the most growth in the next 12 months, with 21% of IT pros considering it, while 11% are considering AWS.

9 - Battle for Cloud Storage ShareBattle for Cloud Storage Share

The top three cloud storage and file-sharing providers deployed by IT are Dropbox (33%), Microsoft OneDrive (31%) and Google Drive (27%). OneDrive is expected to see the most growth in the next 12 months, with another 18% of respondents considering it for use. In terms of actual usage, end users prefer to use Dropbox (78%), Google Drive (59%) and then Microsoft OneDrive (45%).

10 - Battle for Productivity App ShareBattle for Productivity App Share

Microsoft Office Online comes out on top for both current usage (36%) and consideration for use in the next 12 months (23%). Second for current usage is Google Apps for Work (16%), followed by Apple iWork (4%).

11 - The Euro Cloud CardThe Euro Cloud Card

Largely due to a recent controversial data transfer pact ruling between the U.S. and the European Union, 22% of IT pros in Europe are less inclined to use cloud services. Additionally, 43% of IT pros are more prone to question where their data is stored before considering an IT cloud service.

12 - The Effect of the New EC RegulationThe Effect of the New EC Regulation

Only 11% of IT pros in Europe have begun to make necessary adjustments for the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). Another 28% of IT pros in Europe haven’t given it any thought and 32% are unclear about its potential effects on business. Nearly 40% of IT pros in Europe said they need to have their data located within an EU country.

Michael Vizard
Michael Vizard is a seasoned IT journalist, with nearly 30 years of experience writing and editing about enterprise IT issues. He is a contributor to publications including Programmableweb, IT Business Edge, CIOinsight, Channel Insider and UBM Tech. He formerly was editorial director for Ziff-Davis Enterprise, where he launched the company’s custom content division, and has also served as editor in chief for CRN and InfoWorld. He also has held editorial positions at PC Week, Computerworld and Digital Review.

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