The biggest potential differentiator is automated cloud migration services.
The battle among major, hyper-scale cloud service providers for market dominance has not yet produced a clear winner, according to a survey of 1,200 IT professionals and decision makers released Wednesday.
The survey, conducted by Toronto-based cloud migration firm Next Pathway Inc., indicates cloud providers are utilizing numerous tactics to win cloud business in large companies and public sector organizations, While none can claim dominance, 37.3% of surveyed IT leaders regarded Microsoft Azure as the “most robust” cloud platform, while 32.1% favored AWS and 29.7% favored Google Cloud.
“Microsoft Azure, Amazon AWS and Google Cloud Platform, each hold a prominent share of the market, with a slight advantage to Microsoft Azure,” according to the survey.
Respondents lauded AWS’ capacity and architecture, Microsoft Azure’s industry-specific applications and Google’s strategy of making large investments in firms that agree to sign on to their cloud services.
The survey further indicates that while large organizations publicly tout the pros of a multi-cloud strategy, most organizations face significant barriers in actually implementing them. The largest hindrance to embracing a multi-cloud strategy was concern over security implications when implementing multiple clouds, which was cited by 45% of survey respondents. Other barriers included staff overhead and additional costs managing multiple clouds (37.4%) and a lack of internal skill to manage multiple cloud platforms (32.5%). The survey suggests most large organizations rely on a single major cloud provider for the majority of their cloud services.
“As a result, the cloud platform that has the most clients, will win the cloud war,” the survey states.
The survey indicates cloud customers want more automation and migration services from leading cloud service providers. Nearly half (49%) of survey respondents said they wanted cloud providers to migrate existing applications, code and data, as part of their services. Another 45% said they wanted cloud providers to provide multi-cloud strategies and consulting services, while almost 42% sought a more robust partner ecosystem to supplement internal expertise. Other key potential differentiators cited by respondents included increased storage capacity (40.3%), industry-specific solutions (39.3%) and a different pricing model (31.5%).
“Our research reveals that companies that want to move to the cloud, need help—they want more services, industry solutions and enhanced products,” Chetan Mathur, Next Pathway’s chief executive officer, said in a statement. “A close examination of the cloud providers’ market share reveals that there is no clear winner. In this highly competitive market, the cloud wars are on and likely to continue for some time.”