On Twitter, one of our most commented-on posts last year was when we when we reviewed the hype around multi-cloud. With a few exceptions (e.g., disaster recovery, public regulation), we remain cynical about the viability of running a single database logical instance across multiple clouds; we believe that for most organizations, a "multi-cloud" platform will in essence mean "freedom of cloud." We haven't exactly been a lone voice in the wilderness about the operational complexity of running a single instance of a database or application across multiple clouds; Matt Asay, Corey Quinn, and Gartner have shared similar concerns. The cloud computing race in 2020 will have a definite multi-cloud spin. Here's a look at how the cloud leaders stack up, the hybrid market, and the SaaS players that run your company as well as their latest strategic moves. But we expect that freedom of cloud will have a louder ring in the coming year.
This week at Microsoft Ignite, a number of new developments to Azure were in focus. While there were dozens of updates to the world's second-largest public cloud, data was once again in the spotlight. The company made a series of announcements to enable users to extract more value from the exponential increase in data. Satya Nadella, in his Ignite keynote, provided a new visionary direction, or at least a new way of expressing the company's cloud endeavors. In short, the Microsoft cloud is evolving to further embrace edge, privacy, security, AI, and developers (both coders and no coders), and to serve as an engine of job creation. On the surface, this shift appears subtle.
An introduction to cloud computing from IaaS and PaaS to hybrid, public and private cloud. Cloud computing in 2020 is more mature, going multi-cloud, and likely to become more focused on vertical and a sales ground war as the leading vendors battle for market share. Picking the top cloud services provider isn't easy given that the answer -- much like enterprise software and IT in general -- boils down to "it depends." Whether it's Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud platform in infrastructure as a service, or IBM, Dell Technologies, Hewlett-Packard Enterprise, and VMware in multi-cloud hybrid deployments, there are multiple variables for each enterprise. That said, a few key trends are emerging for cloud computing in 2020 that have shifted from 2019, 2018, and 2017. With that backdrop, let's get to the 2020 top cloud computing vendors. Disclosure: ZDNet may earn a commission from some of the products featured on this page. ZDNet and the author were not compensated for this independent review. AWS was the early leader in public cloud computing and has become a major player in AI, database, machine learning and serverless deployments. AWS was the first cloud computing and offering infrastructure as a service in 2008 and has never looked back as it launches new services at a breakneck pace and is creating its own compute stack that aims to be more efficient and pass those savings along. AWS has expanded well beyond cloud compute and storage. If processors based on Arm become the norm in the data center, the industry can thank the gravitational pull of AWS, which launched a second-generation Graviton processor and instances based on it. If successful, the Graviton and the Nitro abstraction layer can be the differentiator for AWS in the cloud wars.
Forrester released a report on Monday establishing five cloud computing predictions for 2020. The predictions reveal the growing battle for cloud computing dominance, with major cloud vendors evolving and shifting tactics. These predictions will help CIOs and their organizations prepare for the growing cloud landscape, which continues shifting as industry cloud leaders develop. With the public cloud market--cloud apps (SaaS), cloud development and data platforms (PaaS), and cloud infrastructure (IaaS)--expected to reach $411 billion by 2022, Forrester outlined the following five future enterprise cloud shifts in its Predictions 2020: Cloud Computing report. Depending on the organization's needs, a company can rent any of these services from major cloud providers.
Microsoft Azure is a broad, ever-expanding set of cloud-based computing services that are available to businesses, developers, government agencies, and anyone who wants to build an app or run an enterprise on the internet without having to manage hardware. It has been the fastest-growing business segment for Microsoft in recent years and will probably overtake Windows in terms of revenue within two or three years. Azure is a strong second among cloud providers, well behind Amazon Web Services but well ahead of any other competition. Microsoft announced Azure in 2008. It made its public debut two years later, in February 2010, as Windows Azure and was rebranded as Microsoft Azure in 2014.