Cloud and data third-quarter 2013: analysis and outlook

1Executive Summary

Slower and less-hyped growth occurred in the cloud-computing marketplace in the third quarter, including noticeably less news coming from cloud-computing providers. The normal summer slowdown accounts for part of this trend, but it seems most enterprises are just starting to work with cloud computing rather than following the technical drama of the past several years.

Continued concern stemming from the National Security Agency (NSA) surveillance scandal pushed many cloud providers to offer new privacy services, including data encryption by default.

OpenStack turned three years old, which has prompted many to assess the viability of its popular Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) cloud standard. Still, OpenStack drives solid support from those who sell its private and public clouds, including Hewlett-Packard and Rackspace. Overall, the standard seems solid, and it offers an alternative to Amazon Web Services (AWS). Nevertheless, OpenStack’s growth has been lackluster compared to AWS.

Finally, there seems to be more interest in multicloud implementations, which go beyond hybrid cloud offerings. A multicloud mixes and matches many types of private and public clouds, knitting them together to form the right platform for a specific enterprise. Arising from its use is the need for management and governance, which has led to the birth new governance systems, called cloud management platforms (CMP). More attention is being paid to this category of technology, which is a combination of existing governance approaches melded with cloud management that focuses on operations and devops.

In summary, events in the third quarter included:

  • Multicloud rose as a concept, with a clamor for cloud governance, including the use of CMP.
  • Changes at Microsoft called into question the viability of the software giant’s cloud strategy.
  • The OpenStack cloud standard turned three years old with momentum, but concerns still exist.
  • The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) investigated IBM for cloud washing as AWS and IBM battled for the CIA cloud contract.
  • Several major cloud players were awarded $10 billion worth of new contracts.
  • Oracle boosted its in-memory capabilities and price tag, while its hardware revenues continued to tumble.

Source: flickr user dennis_vu

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