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Deployment complexity stops enterprises making most of multi-cloud, says 451 Research

Data from 451 Research suggests the growing range and complexity of service providers’ product portfolios could make it harder for enterprises to reap multi-cloud rewards

Enterprise appetites for multi-cloud deployments are on the rise, but many firms may struggle to reap the benefits because of the growing complexity of service providers’ product portfolios.

According to 451 Research’s Voice of the enterprise: cloud transformation study, there is a growing appetite among enterprises for taking a mix-and-match approach to procuring services, with 69% of respondents citing an interest in adopting the multi-cloud model by 2019.

The study is compiled using data accrued from 600 surveys from IT decision makers worldwide, which is then combined with feedback from 451 Research’s panel of 60,000 senior IT buyers.

While the multi-cloud model promises cost and resiliency benefits, the growing range of services offered by the major cloud providers, including Amazon Web Services (AWS), could make it difficult for enterprises to take full advantage of what this approach has to offer, it said.

To back this point, 451 Research pointed to the fact that the AWS portfolio of cloud services features more than 320,000 SKUs, with around 53,000 of these added during the first two weeks of November 2017.

“Cloud buyers have access to more capabilities than ever before, but the result is greater complexity. It is a nightmare for enterprises to calculate the cost of computing using a single cloud provider, let alone comparing providers or planning a multi-cloud strategy,” said Owen Rogers, research director at 451 Research.

“The cloud was supposed to be a simple utility like electricity, but new innovations and new pricing models, such as AWS Reserved Instances, mean the IT landscape is more complex than ever.”

451 Research predicts, as this complexity grows, opportunities for companies that can help enterprises broker and integrate their growing array of cloud services will emerge, and offer simplified pricing structures. 

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The publication of 451 Research’s findings coincides with the start of the AWS RE:Invent annual customer, developer and partner conference in Las Vegas, where the firm is tipped to announce a slew of new products over the course of the coming week.

Its data also reinforces the view that cloud has become the accepted way to consume and access IT resources for enterprises, with 90% of respondents confirming they now use some kind of cloud service in their organisation.

The data also suggest IT leaders appear to be losing interest in running their own deployments, with 451 Research predicting 60% of workloads will run in third-party hosted cloud environments by 2019, up from 45% today.

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