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Who is Adopting the Public Cloud Faster? North America or Europe?
Dick Csaplar
AUG 02, 2013 08:00 AM
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The Cloud is a worldwide phenomenon, with wide adoption across all parts of the globe. This blog will compare the rates of adoption of Public Cloud computing between North America (the U.S., Canada, and Mexico) and Europe. Aberdeen research found that companies in Europe adopted Public Cloud computing earlier and use more Cloud services than companies based in North America and, as a result, Europe gains the advantage of reducing their IT spending and headcount. The full report can be found here "Who is Adopting the Public Cloud Faster? North America or Europe?".

Europe Adopted the Public Cloud Earlier

In January 2013, Aberdeen surveyed 123 organizations to learn how they use the Public Cloud as part of their IT infrastructure. Fifty-seven percent (57%) of respondents were from North America and 29% were from Europe.

Bar graph showing Length of Cloud Program in North America and Europe

Source: Aberdeen January 2013

Aberdeen asked the respondents when they had begun a formal program to use the Public Cloud. Figure 1 shows that European companies have, on average more experience using the Public Cloud. The average length of a Cloud program for companies from North America is 2.6 years and for Europe it is 3.5 years, almost a full year longer. The peak years of Public Cloud adoption for Europe was between two and five years ago and for North America it was one to two years ago. North America also has a slightly higher percentage of companies with no usage of the Public Cloud as 26% of North American respondents answered they were still planning a deployment versus 23% for Europe, a difference of 13%.

Figure 1 is not a measure of the overall consumption of Public Cloud by enterprises. The chart only reports the usage of those who have a formal Cloud computing program and have deployed some of or their entire IT infrastructure in the Public Cloud. For those companies who have active Public Cloud initiatives (excluding those with a planned deployment), 60% overall have been doing it for at least two years — and in the world of IT, two years is long enough to find and resolve serious performance issues. Public Cloud computing can now be viewed as being "mainstream" but still a new technology that is finding its place in the IT arsenal.

Europe Uses More Cloud Services

Almost every IT function can be outsourced to a third-party provider and purchased on an "as-a-Service" basis. As part of the survey, Aberdeen asked respondents to report the types of Cloud services they use to support their computing infrastructure. The percentages in Figure 2 will add up to greater than 100% as respondents were allowed to identify all services they currently have deployed in the Public Cloud.

Bar graph showing Cloud Services Deployed in North America and Europe

Source: Aberdeen January 2013

Companies based in Europe are using more Public Cloud services than their North American counterparts. North America leads only in the usage of Cloud recovery services with Europe using more SaaS (Software-as-a-Service) applications, Cloud storage, IaaS (Infrastructure-as-a-Service), and Hybrid Clouds. This wide number of services deployed by companies based in Europe shows a much more mature Cloud experience than for North American organizations. These wide ranging services touch almost every aspect of the data center and require an organized and planned deployment.

Key Takeaways: Early Adoption Brings Greater Benefits

Aberdeen's IT Infrastructure research studies the deployment trends of many technologies. Generally, the deployment rates of researched technologies are very similar between North America and Europe, as the tools they use are almost identical. For example, the deployment of server virtualization technology has almost identical deployment patterns across Europe and North America.

However, the economic climates are very different between Europe and North America, which has resulted in very different adoption rates of Public Cloud programs. Based on Aberdeen's analysis, we would expect to see the adoption of Public Cloud services to continue to increase in both North America and Europe. Several of the Public Cloud services listed in Figure 2, such as Hybrid Cloud and Cloud Recovery, have low worldwide rates of adoption. As the technological expertise of companies grows and their trust of service providers to handle mission critical operations improves, more and wider Public Cloud deployments are inevitable.

Dick Csaplar
Senior Research Analyst, Virtualization and the Cloud
IT Infrastructure Group
Aberdeen Group

See more at: http://blogs.aberdeen.com/it-infrastructure/who-is-adopting-the-public-cloud-faster-north-america-or-europe/#sthash.HLvLHrYR.dpuf

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