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Moving to IDC Insights Community

Posted by Frank Gens on January 10th, 2011

Detour - drive to IDC Insights Community!BREAKING NEWS:  Starting January 2011, I’ll be moving my blogging efforts over to IDC’s growing IDC Insights Community, which offers a much broader range of topics and voices, and a better collaboration environment for my colleagues and me to interact with you and our other friends and clients.

Let me say “thank you” for checking out IDC eXchange for the past 5 years.  When we launched this site in 2005, IDC didn’t really “do” blogging, and this was a bit of an experiment.  IDC eXchange has turned out to be a great platform for me to share some thought leadership, supported by IDC research, on the future of the IT industry.

No question, 2005-2010 was an absolutely awesome time to be writing about IT’s future. The good news is that 2011 looks to be every bit as exciting. As I noted in IDC’s Predictions for 2011, we see cloud – along with mobile devices and apps, wireless broadband, big data (and pervasive analytics) and social technologies – shifting from “sandbox technologies” to “the new mainstream platform” for the IT industry’s growth for the next two decades. I look forward to writing more – and interacting with you – about this industry transformation this year and beyond over on the IDC Insights Community (notably in the Cloud Computing discussions)!

– Frank


public-cloud-iconLast week IDC announced availability of our new forecast for public IT Cloud services spending.  The new forecast replaces last October’s forecast.   In this post, I’ll share some highlights of the new forecast, which extends to 2014.

[The full report - including key assumptions and forecast data for all six years, segmented by five functional categories within eight regions/countries - is available to subscribers on]

Scorching Growth and Shifting Category Spend

In total, spending on public IT cloud services (excludes private cloud spending) will grow from $16.5 billion in 2009 – a modest, recession-driven haircut from last year’s forecast – to over $55 billion in 2014. This is scorching fast growth of 27% per year.

Worldwide Public IT Services Forecast - 2009, 2014


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Time to Revise Our 2010 Android Apps Prediction

Posted by Frank Gens on January 5th, 2010


Now that Google has announced the Nexus One – its own version of an Android-based “app phone” (h/t David Pogue) – they have enhanced the likelihood of an even larger and faster-growing base of Adroid apps than we predicted last month.

In IDC Predictions 2010, we forecasted that “Google Android — now on a dozen devices — will emerge as a potent competitor to the iPhone, BlackBerry, Symbian, and Microsoft platforms.” We went on to say “there are now about 10,000 applications for Android; we predict there will be a strong ramp (albeit slower than the iPhone app ramp) for Android — look for 50,000–75,000 applications by the end of 2010.”

Why, you may ask, did we envision a slower ramp than for iPhone apps? This is what we said: “The advantage of Android — that it’s more “open” than the iPhone platform — creates more compatibility challenges for developers across the different device manufacturers’ hardware.” And this multiple-manufacturers philosophy has, indeed, created some compatibility/portability frustration for the Android developer community.

But now, with the Nexus One effectively creating a strong reference platform for Android apps, Google is trying to mitigate that issue. The Nexus One will likely drive other Android handset manufacturers to put more a bit more weight on compatibility with the Nexus One implementation of Android, and less on hacking/modifying Android to adapt to their own unique hardware designs. And that’s good news for Android developers – and customers.

So – if it’s not too soon to adjust our 2010 predictions (heck, it’s only January 5th!) – we’d like to revise our year-end 2010 Android apps prediction to 75,000-100,000, closer to the iPhone’s year one trajectory. We’re not quite predicting that Apple’s running for cover; the Nexus One is, after all, a version 1.0 product, and the iPhone continues to have enormous momentum. But with Google’s strategic move to strengthen (and de-fragment) its mobile apps platform, Apple is certainly looking at a tougher competitor today than they saw yesterday.

IDC Survey: What IT Is Likely to Move to the Cloud?

Posted by Frank Gens on January 5th, 2010

cloud_surveyIn a recent post, I shared users’ perceptions of cloud benefits and challenges from our most recent IDC IT Cloud Services Survey. In this post, I’ll show what these same IT and line-of-business executives say about their likeliness to adopt the cloud services model for different IT applications, workloads and services.

Once again, the survey was fielded, from the IDC Enterprise Panel of IT executives and their line-of-business (LOB) colleagues.

Organizations Are Likely to Consider Cloud Delivery for Many IT Offerings

We asked the panel to rate their organizations’ likelihood – on a 1 (very unlikely) to 5 (very likely) scale – to pursue the cloud model for a variety of IT applications, workloads and services. The chart below shows the percentage of panelists responding 3, 4 or 5 – that is, neutral to very likely.

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New IDC IT Cloud Services Survey: Top Benefits and Challenges

Posted by Frank Gens on December 15th, 2009

cloud_surveyThis year’s IDC IT cloud services survey reveals many of the same perceptions about cloud benefits and challenges as seen in last year’s survey. But there are a few interesting shifts this year, driven largely by: 1) budget pressure from the challenging economy, and 2) a growing sophistication in users’ understanding of cloud services.

This year’s survey was fielded, like last year’s, from the IDC Enterprise Panel of IT executives and their line-of-business (LOB) colleagues. The respondent population is very similar to that of last year’s survey, validating comparisons with last year’s results.

Economics and Adoption Speed Still Top Benefits; Standardization Moves Up

This year’s survey shows, once again, that economic benefits are key drivers of IT cloud services adoption. Three of the top five benefits were about perceived cost advantages of the cloud model: pay for use (#1), payments streamed with use (#3) and shift of IT headcount and costs to the service provider (#5).

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IDC Predictions 2010 Webcast Q&A

Posted by Frank Gens on December 9th, 2009

QandA_smOn Thursday’s IDC Predictions 2010 webcast, our line to the On24 service dropped just a few questions into the Q&A session. We captured all the questions, and – as promised – we are posting answers to them here on IDC eXchange. Many thanks to my IDC colleagues who contributed to these Q&A responses.

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IDC Predictions 2010 – Recovery and Transformation

Posted by Frank Gens on December 5th, 2009

IDC predictions banner

On Thursday December 3rd, IDC released its big picture predictions for the IT and Telecommunications industry in 2010. Here are some links for more detail.

The Webcast – The recorded one-hour IDC Predictions 2010 telebriefing (simple registration required):>

IDC Predictions 2010 telebriefing

The Document – The full “IDC Predictions 2010″ document:

  • For IDC clients:


  • For non-clients (simple registration required):

download IDC Predictions 2010

The Video – And here’s the 5-minute video summary:

Answers to Telebriefing Questions – On Thursday’s IDC Predictions webcast, our line to the On24 service dropped just a few questions into the Q&A session. We captured all the questions, and over the next several days we’ll post answers to those questions here on IDC eXchange. So stay tuned!

IDC’s New IT Cloud Services Forecast: 2009-2013

Posted by Frank Gens on October 5th, 2009

cloud2010Last year, we published IDC’s first forecast of IT cloud services, focusing on enterprise adoption of public cloud services in five big IT categories through 2012. For the past several months, dozens of IDC analysts have collaborated to refine, deepen and extend our cloud services forecasts. In this post, we share this year’s update of our top-level cloud services forecast, now extended through 2013. [The full forecast, including 2008 as well as 2010-2012, will be published shortly in IDC's Cloud Services: Global Overview subscription program.]

The New Forecast

Here is the new forecast, segmented by offering category, for 2009 and 2013:



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Defining “Cloud Services” – an IDC update

Posted by Frank Gens on September 30th, 2009

cloud2010Last year, we published IDC’s “cloud services” definition, as the foundation for our forecast of IT Cloud Services spending – and to inject IDC’s point of view, as a rational market taxonomist, into a very crowded and confused debate about just what “the cloud” is all about.

After a full year of discussion and debate among key IDC analysts, We’ve continued to refine our thinking about what defines cloud services, and what makes them new and important.and conversations with hundreds of leading IT users and suppliers, we’ve continued to refine our thinking about what defines cloud services, and what makes them new and important. The revised definition is very consistent with last year’s definition, with improvements in two areas: 1) minor tweaking of cloud service “key attributes” to improve clarity, and 2) expansion of the definitional scope to accommodate both public and private cloud deployment models. [ more...]

Users See Cloud As an Alternative Financing Strategy

Posted by Frank Gens on June 30th, 2009

calculator_smallEveryone knows that one of the top cloud services model benefits, according to users, is the ability to stream payments out over the offering’s useful life, rather than paying the entire cost up-front. But I still found it intriguing when IDC colleague Jennifer Koppy recently presented additional data points that support the strong economic appeal of the cloud model. [ more...]

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