"These evolutionary, and revolutionary, changes in IT deployment and business attitudes are having a profound impact on traditional IT environments," said Katie Broderick, senior research analyst, Enterprise Platforms and Datacenter Trends and Strategies. "Cloud computing can dramatically simplify administrating and managing many companies' datacenters and position IT as a service organization for the rest of the company. Off-loading some of the more mundane tasks to the cloud (public or private) and freeing up manpower to focus on adding value to the business is critical to driving cloud adoption. But, up-front costs are real, and choosing the right vendor to manage or deploy an environment is equally important."
IDC's research found that public clouds are generally being built on simpler server hardware with a focus on energy efficiency, density, and cost control. The reliability, availability, and serviceability (RAS) for public clouds tends to be built into the software layer (through failover and virtualization). As a result, public cloud computing is a unit story with lower average selling values (ASVs) than an average x86-based server. IDC forecasts the number of servers shipped for deployment in public clouds will reach more than 1.2 million in 2015, representing a 2011-2015 compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 21.1%.
In contrast, private cloud systems are being built on higher-end hardware with more memory, I/O bandwidth, and advanced CPU capabilities. Private clouds are also more reliant on the hardware for their RAS capabilities. Consequently, private clouds represent a value market with larger converged systems selling at higher ASVs than the average x86 system. IDC expects more than 570,000 servers will be shipped for deployment into private clouds in 2015, representing a five-year CAGR of 22.4%.
The study, Worldwide Enterprise Server Cloud Computing 2011-2015 Forecast (IDC #228916) presents market size and forecast information for server hardware infrastructure supporting public and private clouds from 2010 through 2015. This is IDC's second cloud forecast from the server hardware perspective.