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AWS cloud dominance under growing threat from Google and Microsoft, says 451 Research

Latest Voice of the Enterprise report from 451 Research suggests competition in the IaaS market is hotting up, with Microsoft and Google posing a growing threat to AWS

Google is outperforming Amazon Web Services (AWS) in terms of the value for money it offers cloud users, suggests 451 Research’s recent Voice of the enterprise (VotE) study.

The report features responses from more than 700 cloud decision makers from around the world, which are then combined with feedback from a panel of 50,000 senior IT buyers.

As part of the process, respondents are asked to rank the runners and riders of the infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) market, in terms of what they promise and what they deliver.

According to their combined feedback, AWS continues to outperform its public cloud competitors on various fronts, including the breadth of services it offers, brand reputation, technical expertise and innovation.

However, this year’s report points to several areas where its competitors appear to have outperformed it over the past 12 months.

For instance, the Google Cloud Platform emerged as the top-performing IaaS supplier from a cost and value for money perspective, while IBM and Microsoft both secured higher rankings than AWS for their ability to “understand” users’ business needs.

Of those surveyed, 55.8% said they use AWS, while 39% described the firm as their “most important” IaaS provider, closely followed by Microsoft with 35% of the vote.

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In the 2016 edition of the report, just 20.2% said they considered Microsoft to be their “most important” IaaS provider, with 451 Research going on to describe the Redmond software giant as a “formidable challenger” in public cloud this year.

Melanie Posey, research vice-president and lead analyst for 451’s Voice of the enterprise: cloud transformation service, said when Microsoft’s Azure Stack enters general availability later this year, the impact on its rankings could be transformative.  

The offering is being touted by Microsoft as a means of giving enterprises tied to on-premise environments access to public cloud-like functionality and benefits.

“It will be interesting to assess the impact of Azure Stack on Microsoft’s overall positioning and individual attribute ratings for multi-cloud/hybrid support, as well as technical expertise and innovation,” said Posey.

The report also revealed that 22% of enterprises around the world appear to have adopted a cloud-first approach to IT procurement, with IaaS emerging as respondents’ most keenly adopted form of cloud.

“As organisations implement IT transformation in earnest, they are increasingly relying on strategic partners for operational assistance. Those IaaS service providers that position infrastructure and technological innovation alongside meeting business requirements will be best positioned to capitalise on this market opportunity,” added Posey.

Read more on Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS)