Global spending on public cloud services is forecast to grow 23.1 per cent in 2021 to total $US332.3 billion, up from $US270 billion in 2020. Australian organisations meanwhile will tip $A10.6 billion this year into public cloud services, up 18.4 per cent from 2020.

The figures are contained in a new forecast from Gartner.

“Organisations in Australia and New Zealand responded to COVID-19 by accelerating their adoption of cloud,” said Michael Warrilow, research vice president at Gartner. “Simply put, the pandemic served as a multiplier for CIOs’ interest in the cloud. It allowed CIOs to overcome any reluctance of moving mission critical workloads from on-premises to the cloud.”

“Emerging technologies such as containerisation, desktop-as-a-service and edge computing are becoming more mainstream and driving additional cloud spending. And hyperscale public cloud services have proven their underlying scalability and elasticity. This has led to stronger forecasts for cloud adoption in coming years. We also expect to see hyperscale providers increase their presence in in this region,” Warrilow said.

Software as a service (SaaS) remains the largest market segment and is forecast to reach $A5.7 billion in Australia in 2021 as the demand for composable applications requires a different type of SaaS experience (see Table 1).

Infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) and desktop-as-a-service (DaaS) will see the highest growth in 2021, 30.2 per cent and 57.7 per cent respectively, as CIOs face continued pressures to scale infrastructure that supports moving complex workloads to the cloud and the demands of a hybrid workforce.

Table 1: Australia Public Cloud Services End-User Spending Forecast (Millions of Australian Dollars)

  2020 2021 2022
Cloud Business Process Services (BPaaS) 908 954 972
Cloud Application Infrastructure Services (PaaS) 1,434 1,764 2,206
Cloud Application Services (SaaS) 4,872 5,695 6,750
Cloud Management and Security Services 436 477 586
Cloud System Infrastructure Services (IaaS) 1,262 1,643 2,091
Desktop as a Service (DaaS) 43 68 88
Total Market 8,956 10,602 12,693
Total Growth 12.8% 18.4% 19.7%

BPaaS = business process as a service; IaaS = infrastructure as a service; PaaS = platform as a service; SaaS = software as a service
Note: Totals may not add up due to rounding.

Source: Gartner (April 2021)

“It’s important to note that the usage and adoption of cloud that served enterprises well during the ongoing crisis will not look the same in the coming years,” said Warrilow. “It will evolve from serving pedestrian use cases such as infrastructure and application migration, to those that combine cloud with technologies such as artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, 5G and more.

“In other words, cloud will serve as the glue between many other technologies that CIOs want to use more of, allowing them to address more complex and emerging use cases. It will be a disruptive market, to say the least.”

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