What is the Cloud Computing Market?

Cloud Computing


The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) defines cloud computing as a “model for enabling ubiquitous, convenient, on-demand network access to a shared pool of configurable computing resources (e.g., networks, servers, storage, applications, and services) that can be rapidly provisioned and released with minimal management effort or service provider interaction.”


According to NIST, this cloud model is composed of:


  • Five essential characteristics: on-demand self-service, broad network access, resource pooling, rapid elasticity and measured service
  • Three service models: Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Infrastructure as a Service (Iaas)
  • Four deployment models: private cloud, community cloud, public cloud and hybrid cloud

How Big is the Cloud Computing Market?

Market research firm Markets and Markets estimates that the cloud computing market is expected to grow to $121 billion dollars by 2015: a 26% compound annual growth rate from the $37 billion value in 2010. A large proportion of the growth of the cloud services sector is being driven by rapid adoption of SaaS platforms, which save businesses a significant amount of the costs of licensing, management, and deployment of various solutions. IaaS is also expected to grow rapidly as a platform on which businesses will host their own SaaS solutions and for other business critical infrastructure deployments.

How is the Cloud Computing Market Segmented?

Typically, the cloud computing market is divided along service types or cloud technology providers.


  • Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) – storage, compute, and service management services
  • Platform as a Service (PaaS) – general purpose, business intelligence, integration, development and testing and database services
  • Software as a Service (SaaS) – billing, financials, legal, human resources, sales, CRM, desktop productivity, content management, backup & recovery, document management, collaboration and social network application services
  • Cloud technology software – data, compute, cloud management, appliances, file storage
  • Cloud professional services – strategy & planning, migration and implementation, testing, security, support and training services