The global cloud services market is forecast to reach $68.3 billion in 2010 according to a forecast released by Gartner, and could soar to $149 billion by 2014.

“We are seeing an acceleration of adoption of cloud computing and cloud services among enterprises and an explosion of supply-side activity as technology providers maneuver to exploit the growing commercial opportunity,” Ben Pring, Gartner research vice president, said in releasing the report.

“The scale of application deployments is growing; multi-thousand seat deals are increasingly common . . . this was highly unusual a year ago.”

The $68.3 billion forecast for 2010 represents a 16.6% increase from the $58.6 billion spent on cloud services in 2009. The U.S. share of the worldwide cloud services market was 69% in 2009 and is expected to be 58% in 2010. By 2014, Gartner predicts the U.S. share will be diluted to 50% as other countries and regions begin to more rapidly adopt cloud services.

In industry terms, the financial services and manufacturing industries are the largest early adopters. Communications and high-tech industries are also leveraging the cloud in significant volumes. Gartner said the public sector is interested in the potential of cloud services and may increasingly become a significant adopter.

“After many years of germination, most notably in the SaaS arena, the core ideas at the heart of cloud computing – such as pay for use, multi-tenancy and external services – appear to be resonating more strongly,” Pring said. “The financial turbulence of the last 18 months has meant every organization has been scrutinizing every expenditure.”

Pring also noted that while interest in cloud computing has grown, many enterprises still have strong concerns about cloud computing. Security is high on the list, while other concerns including availability of service, vendor viability and maturity.


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