Big data isn't just for big business. Thanks to emerging Hadoop as a Service (HDaaS) platforms, small and midsize companies are positioned to ride the big data wave, according to a Research and Markets report.

HDaaS -- basically, platform as a service -- eliminates the need for on-premises hardware and manages all the data crunching in the cloud. The HDaaS market will expand at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 84.81 percent from 2014 to 2019. Amazon, EMC, IBM and Microsoft will dominate the market, Research and Markets predicted.

Careful of the Hype

No doubt, demand for Hadoop-based services is accelerating. But pinpointing the overall market opportunity and customer demand has been tricky.

Revenue at Hortonworks, which develops a Hadoop distribution, was weaker than expected in the company's most recent quarter. Rivals like Cloudera and MapR insist they continue to see strong growth -- and crowds of IT professionals have been pursuing Hadoop training and certficiations.

On-premises Bundles

At the same time, vendors have been working to simplify on-premises Hadoop deployments -- which require server hardware clusters and plenty more. Two examples: Cisco offers integrated Hadoop bundles, and an Avnet Enabled Hadoop bundle surfaced this week.

Still, those on-premises options are mostly designed for larger businesses with dedicated IT staff and CapEx budgets for big data projects.

Cloud Options

The HDaaS market, in stark contrast, allows small and midsize organizations to get into the big data game without big upfront-costs. Just about every major cloud services provider (CSP) is launching a HDaaS platform. Noteworthy options include:

It's early in the game for those and other HDaaS providers. But Research and Markets is predicting big growth ahead.