Last Updated: February 6, 2021
About a decade ago, one buzzword in the IT field was quickly making its way into the spotlight.
Everyone was talking about “the cloud“!
Back then, people knew very little about this emerging tech, so naturally, there were a lot of questions:
How does the cloud work?
Is it any different from the Internet?
How can I “join” the cloud?
Is it safe to store my data there?
As funny as some of those questions may sound to you today, they were absolutely on point a few years ago.
Cloud computing statistics reveal the exponential growth of the industry since then. Estimated at just $24.65 billion in 2010, it has already surpassed the $100 billion mark and looking to reach $150 billion by the end of 2020.
- 81% of all enterprises have a multi-cloud strategy already laid out or in the works.
- By the end of 2020, 67% of enterprise infrastructure will be cloud-based.
- Additionally, 82% of the workload will reside on the cloud.
- As a result, more than 40 zettabytes of data will be flowing through cloud servers and networks.
- It makes sense, as even today the average person uses 36 cloud-based services every single day.
- Amazon web services has the largest cloud computing market share in at 32%.
- Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) expected to grow in adoption to 56% by 2020.
I’ve seen flowers take more time to sprout fully.
The cloud was always destined for success. Back when we were mostly storing our data on a local device and copying it on flash drives. The mere thought of having everything available on-the-go sounded revolutionary. Nowadays the vast majority of people and businesses use this technology daily.
To show you just how far we have gone, let’s take a look at some curious cloud computing facts and stats.
Impressive Cloud Computing Statistics for 2020
Wondering who is number one in the cloud computing arena at the moment? While free platforms like Dropbox and iCloud continue to excel as the most popular free file storage services, Amazon Web Services appear to be the clear winner according to cloud computing stats in 2020
1. Amazon web services has the largest cloud computing market share in at 32%.
The truth is that the biggest cloud computing market share in 2020 is actually for a category named ‘other’. The next largest percentage which was Amazon Web Services, at 32%.
2. By 2022, the adoption of cloud technologies by other countries will fall behind the US by several years.
Cloud computing actually started in the US and they have been leading the way since 2015, according to cloud computing statistics by country. By 2022, cloud adoption in other countries will be significantly lower.
3. 50% of people said cloud usage would be higher than initially planned throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
COVID-19 had an impact even on cloud computing growth statistics!
A wider survey by Flexera was conducted to see how the pandemic would affect cloud growth. Out of 187 respondents, more than half said cloud usage would be greater than expected, particularly because of the extra capacity needed to meet demand.
4. Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) expected to grow in adoption to 56% by 2020.
(Source: Ricks Cloud)
Based on cloud computing usage statistics, the adoption of Platform-as-a-service (PaaS) back in 2017 was only 32%. In 2020, this is expected to rise significantly to 56%, making it the fastest-growing segment in cloud platforms.
5. The most popular free cloud storage services are iCloud and Dropbox with 300 millions of users per platform.
(Source: Software Testing Help)
A popular use of cloud services is file storage. And while cloud computing stats indicate there are many paid ones available out there, there are some great free alternatives as well. The most popular at the moment are iCloud on Mac, and Dropbox, both of which attract an impressive 300 million users to their platforms.
General Cloud Computing Stats
Shrouded in technological mystery, the Cloud is a term often used generously by shrewd marketers.
6. Cloud-based apps are expanding by the day. Their number has nearly tripled between 2013 and 2016, from 545 to 1427 different services.
The research observes 600 international enterprise businesses and outlines a rapid growth in the adoption of cloud computing by big companies. Especially as organizations are progressively adopting a no-office type of operation, connecting employees and sharing information through a secured network is a must-have solution.
7. Cloud adoption statistics reveal that by 2020 a staggering 83% of the company workload will be stored on the cloud.
A notable detail here is that a growing number of companies will be moving from private to public cloud. This attests to the claims that even though the public model gives you less control, you can still enjoy optimum security and ease-of-access.
8. According to IDC, the three sectors that plan to spend most on cloud computing services are manufacturing ($19.7 billion), professional services ($18.1 billion), and banking ($16.7 billion).
Unsurprisingly, looking at the cloud adoption by industry, industries that deal with the most data yield the most active investors. The banking field is especially fond of the innovations in cloud technology. It fits them perfectly as they often need to retrieve heaps of delicate information from multiple secure locations.
9. Cloud apps can aid companies’ collaborative tasks, file sharing, content sharing, and data security. The average employee uses 36 cloud-based services in their daily routine.
If that sounds excessive, then you need to consider the many applications of cloud computing that have given rise to a multitude of different services. There are over 210 services in the “collaboration” category alone. With such wealth of solutions, it’s no wonder the average enterprise employs about 1400 cloud-based apps.
10. The cloud industry can generally be split into three distinct service models — Public, Private, and Hybrid. The public cloud market alone generated $130 billion in 2017.
The public cloud model offers all the advantages of the virtual network environment for the wider community to enjoy. Architecture-wise, the structure of the model is remarkably similar to the private setup, so organizations are adopting both strategies almost evenly.
Another Statista cloud study unveils that most companies are choosing public over private because of the reduced cost.
11. The future is looking bright for the public cloud. Revenue from the sector is expected to jump to $331 billion by 2022 (from $175.8 billion in 2018).
This marks a 17.5% projected growth from 2018 to 2019 – a brave, yet reasonable assumption. If we take the previous year-to-year growth for comparison, the industry registered a massive 21% jump back then.
12. The growing adoption of cloud services will increase the need for additional IT infrastructure. 2018 cloud computing statistics from IDC predict a 10.9% growth rate of the demand for servers, Ethernet switches, and enterprise storage solutions.
Long term forecasts confirm this trend will continue to affect the IT market in the next few years. Public cloud vendors will be extending their influence and rake more income in return. Should predictions turn out to be correct, the spending on IT infrastructure will reach $55.7 billion by 2022.
13. The need for a well-structured and well-secured cloud service is undeniable. A 2018 survey revealed only 7% of businesses firmly believe they have good visibility over all mission-critical company information.
Judging by the numbers, enterprise cloud adoption seems inevitable. A more promising share of companies (53%) admit they have slight control over crucial business data. Still, the need for optimized file storage and sharing solutions is quite apparent.
14. Multi-cloud and hybrid cloud strategies combine technologies from the public and private cloud model. 74% of enterprises believe they are taking the best of both worlds and define their strategy as hybrid or multi-cloud.
Whether they are employing a mix of on-premise and third-party public service (hybrid) or a combination of different public providers (multi), most companies recognize the value of diversifying their operations. Security and efficiency are top priorities, and cloud computing statistics confirm businesses are not afraid to implement a more complex infrastructure.
15. A 2019 State of the Cloud report shows companies are increasingly adopting a multi-cloud strategy. 84% of surveyed enterprises describe their IT infrastructure as “multi-cloud.”
In comparison, the hybrid cloud strategy is still below 60%. This again confirms that companies are progressively moving away from on-premise infrastructure and shifting their operations to third-party servers. Public cloud remains the most preferred cloud service type, with 91% of respondents relying on such tech.
Need some first-hand information about this emerging technology?
Companies share their experience with the cloud.
Cloud Adoption Facts
Cloud-based services are everywhere already. You are likely to be using some to read this very article.
16. The positive impact of cloud technology is almost instantaneous. 80% of companies report operation improvements within the first few months of adopting the tech.
The research was conducted predominantly within startups and SMBs, which proves that cloud computing is not just for the big boys to dabble with. According to cloud statistics, tech adoption in smaller businesses is growing yearly, and CEOs report the first positive results within months.
17. A major reason for the hypergrowth of the public cloud is its affordability. Small and medium businesses find it 40% more cost-effective to employ third-party cloud platforms than maintaining an in-house system.
When you think about it, it certainly makes sense – not everyone can afford such infrastructure and supporting staff, let alone the time involved for setup and maintenance. On top of that, you have to take great care of keeping your operations safe and secure. Public cloud computing companies might not grant you much control over this aspect, but the setup still guarantees your data is isolated and secured from breaches.
18. Cloud technology is so reliable when it comes to safety that 94% of businesses report significant improvements in online security after moving their data to the cloud.
Furthermore, a massive 91% also state cloud tech proves of immense help when they deal with government compliance requirements. Cloud infrastructure companies employ advanced encryption methods when transmitting data, ensuring no unauthorized user can gain access to your private information.
19. Research from March 2018 reveals some interesting statistics on cloud computing – 60% of businesses intend to employ this emerging technology in the next 18 months.
(Source: Cloud 247)
At the time of the research, the percentage of organizations with a cloud IT infrastructure was revolving around the 45% mark. It seems that the predictions are not only accurate but might even ring true before the 18-month period is over.
We can all agree cloud tech is here to stay, so let’s see how it works in practice.
Cloud Usage Statistics
Businesses big and small begin adopting cloud services en masse. It makes sense from economic and security standpoints.
20. What are the top reasons companies choose to trust the cloud? 71% look for speed improvements, 63% want greater flexibility, and 57% pick the improved customer support as reason #1.
Apart from the need for speed (wink, wink), the numbers are not spread evenly across the board when we take company size into account. Organizations with more than 1000 employees are mainly looking for flexibility and reduced costs of operation, while smaller companies want to ensure their business continuity.
21. Email services and file storage are the predominant uses for cloud computing in the EU with 66% and 53% respectively.
The Eurostat research contains usage statistics from 2014, 2016, and 2018, and reveals some interesting shifts in the reasons for adopting the cloud. Email management remains at a steady level, while file storage purposes have increased by a whopping 15%. Other more recent needs include hosting company database, more specifically virtual private server (VPS) hosting. The last one provides dedicated resources on the server, thanks to virtualization technology.
22. What are the top 3 challenges that enterprises and SMBs encounter when using the tech? Businesses all point out “governance” as their #1 priority, according to 2019 cloud computing statistics.
A large number of enterprises (84%) are worried about managing their IT spending as well, due to the complexity and scale of their operations. Most small businesses are looking for enhanced security and compliance, while the possible costs are way down their list of concerns.
To this point, we are yet to mention the big players in the cloud niche.
Let’s give credit to the most influential providers of the tech.
Cloud Provider Statistics
There is one big name that dominates the cloud scene: Amazon Web Services.
23. AWS was one of the first cloud networking companies, launched back in 2006. To this day it still dominates the market with a 33% share. Microsoft Azure is trailing in second place with a mere 16%.
AWS may sit comfortably on their throne for now, but should also watch out for other tech giants who have decided to dip their toes in the cloud game. Google Cloud and its Kubernetes technology are shaping to be a worthy competitor. The service launched just a couple of years ago and has already amassed a 7% market share.
24. Cloud computing statistics unveil that AWS brought Amazon a massive $25.66 billion in revenues in 2018 alone, up from $17.5 billion in 2017.
If we take a better look at the stats, we can spot a peculiar trend. While AWS accounts for mere 8% of Amazon’s enormous profits, its revenues make up for over 71% of the company’s operating income.
Simply put, a lower cost of operations means a juicier profit, which makes AWS a precious asset.
25. Dropbox continues to be the leading cloud storage provider with 47.3%. Other top services include Google Drive (26.9%) and Microsoft OneDrive (15.3%).
Looking at the cloud storage statistics, Dropbox is losing part of its user base in favor of Google Drive and even Box.com, which focus mainly on enterprise solutions. The biggest storage vendor still dominates the market, but if this alarming trend continues, they will soon face fierce competition.
So what can we expect from the industry in the foreseeable future?
Cloud technology seems to have a lot in store for us.
Latest Development Statistics
Cloud computing is still computing and as such the tech develops with stunning temps.
26. The global cloud services market will be raking $555 billion in revenues by 2020.
(Source: Allied Market Research)
This forecast predicts the 2014-2020 period will indicate a 17.5% overall growth rate for the cloud computing industry. Management tools and security services are expected to be the fastest growing segments with a 28.4% improvement.
27. Enterprises are predicted to invest over 3.5 million on average within the next year. This expenditure will take 30% of their total IT budget in 2020.
The majority of the budgets will be allocated for SaaS platforms (48%) while the rest will be split between IaaS (30%), and PaaS (21%). The average spendings have risen by 35.8% since 2016 which attests to the growing interest of enterprises in the cloud computing market.
28. Cloud computing is the #1 most in-demand hard skill, according to LinkedIn. Half of the most promising jobs of 2019 required a good knowledge of this emerging technology.
Looking down the list of jobs, you can see the wealth of opportunities those specific skills unlock. Site reliability engineers, enterprise account executives, customer success managers, solution architects — a proficiency in cloud tech is an excellent foundation for your future professional development.
29. The median salary for professionals in the field now stands at $146.350.
The growth of cloud computing has significantly improved wages as they were around $124,300 just a couple of years ago.
The research encompassed over 50,000 job postings in the cloud tech field. It reveals that the average salary for skilled professionals marked a remarkable jump of $22,050 since 2016. The demand for cloud experts today is higher than ever and it shows in their salaries as well.
30. 67% of enterprise IT infrastructure and software will be cloud-based by the end of 2020.
Businesses will progressively look to move from private to public and hybrid cloud providers. This process will boost the influence of the top industry vendors and grant them control over 75% of the market. Currently, the top five “only” account for about 50% of the cloud market.
We have now covered the essential aspects of cloud computing technology — how it came to be and what the near future holds.
Now for the fun part.
Let’s look at some intriguing stats and little-known facts about the exciting and trendy tech that makes the cloud so awesome.
Fun Cloud Computing Facts
It was hard not to go overboard with cloud-related puns throughout this piece. Here are some entertaining and curious facts about the technology.
26. The US Government is probably the most prominent cloud “client.” 48% of federal and state agencies utilize multiple cloud-based services.
The cloud is at the very core of the government’s modernization, and optimization efforts. That is evident by their steady shift to Amazon AWS. Banks, on the other hand, are the most active users of the cloud. That’s mostly due to the adoption of other new technologies like blockchain in their daily operations.
31. Any new cloud server has the capacity to host 600 smartphones and 120 tablets.
The rapid cloud computing growth is directly related to the surge in electronic device usage. Currently, there are over 13,000,000 servers scattered across the world, and Amazon AWS accounts for almost half of them. Enterprise investments in IT infrastructure will undoubtedly help the sector to grow exponentially.
32. The cloud will contain more than 40 zettabytes of information by 2020.
A 2014 forecast, conducted by the Dell EMC Education Service and the IDC market intelligence firm, came up with that bold prediction. It is now more than likely to become true.
The 2020 cloud forecast anticipates there should be 5,200 GB of data for every person on Earth, comprising a total of 40 zettabytes. To put things in perspective, a single zettabyte contains one sextillion bytes — that is 1 with 21 zeroes, in case you were wondering.
33. How are EU enterprises adopting cloud technology within different European countries? Finland and Sweden are leading the pack with 65% and 57% respectively.
In fact, all Scandinavian countries are way up on the list and already enjoying the positive impacts of their cloud adoption. On the other end of the spectrum, we have Romania and Bulgaria with a mere 10% of enterprises hosted in the cloud in 2018.
34. Last year IBM acquired RedHat for $34 billion in an attempt to set a firm foot on the hybrid cloud market.
The deal became the most expensive software acquisition and third-biggest acquisition in the history of tech. IBM had to overpay significantly, which marks its ambition to challenge the big players in the hybrid market. Will this deal skyrocket their services or put them in massive debt? We are yet to see the impact.
Time to wrap up our short history of the cloud!
Judging by the current state of the cloud, there are no major obstacles for the technology to continue evolving. Big enterprises are already putting a lot of sensitive information in the public cloud. Their growing needs are already creating a new wave of cutting-edge solutions and business strategies.
Hybrid and multi-cloud models are becoming the new status quo. Exciting innovations like Kubernetes containers are already serving the industry. They’re just a taste of what’s to come.
So what’s your take on these cloud computing statistics?
Have anything interesting to add?
Share opinions in the comments below or check out more mind-blowing tech stats.