More Than Half Your IT Spend is Going to be Cloud by 2016

More Than Half Your IT Spend is Going to be Cloud by 2016
by Dave Asprey

Wow. Gartner says that, “The use of cloud computing is growing, and by 2016 this growth will increase to become the bulk of the new IT spend.” Even better, they predict, “2016 will be a defining year for cloud as private cloud begins to give way to hybrid cloud, and nearly half of large enterprises will have hybrid cloud deployments by the end of 2017.”

So, um, how much of this is cloudwashing? It has become even more popular this year to rebrand traditional IT offerings as “Cloud.” I’m pretty sure my toaster is cloud-enabled. However, if you step outside the hype, Gartner is really focusing on enterprise spend, so let’s assume that only a nominal percentage of that large growth number is from mislabeled traditional IT offerings.

I am totally on board with the idea that, in two years, more IT spend will be in the cloud than not. Many of the enterprises I speak with no longer look to put applications in their private data centers first. They only do it when there is a good reason not to put them in public clouds. Two years ago, security would have been that reason, but today, it’s possible that the same security system (like Trend Micro’s Deep Security) can manage a hybrid architecture that includes public and private cloud elements from the same console, so security concerns can now evolve. There is also the fact that most private data centers are also running private cloud today, so when you lump public and private cloud spending, of course it’s more than half, as Gartner predicts.

Gartner is also spot-on when it comes to their prediction about hybrid cloud deployments existing in half of large enterprises. I’m not sure, however, that most enterprises would call them hybrid clouds. The term hybrid cloud is so mushy that nearly any modern public cloud deployment with even the most tenuous links to an enterprise data center can arguably be called hybrid. And what of clouds that interlink three different public clouds with a software as a service (SaaS) offering and a platform as a service (PaaS) offering from a partner? Let’s just say it’s complex.

That’s how enterprise applications usually end up, and it’s why you can get a bachelor’s of science degree in Computer Information Systems. The cloud doesn’t come close to changing that.

Dave Asprey is Vice President of Cloud Security at Trend Micro, Dave is responsible for thought leadership and technology evangelism for Trend Micro’s cloud computing and virtualization businesses. He is the author of the book Cloud Networking Simplified (Prentice Hall 2013).