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Spending on public cloud set to skyrocket in 2021

Cloud computing
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Global cloud computing expenditure is set to surge in 2021, partly driven by the coronavirus pandemic. 

According to new figures from Gartner, end-user spending on public cloud services is predicted to increase by 18.4% in 2021, growing from $257.5 billion to $304.9 billion.

Looking more closely at which cloud segments are set to benefit most, it appears that platform-as-a-service offerings will see the largest growth, with forecasts estimating that its end-user spend will increase by 26.6% in 2021. Software-as-a-service, however, will remain the biggest cloud market segment, reaching a value of $117.7 billion.

A post-Covid plan

The coronavirus pandemic has forced businesses into a tough financial balancing act. 

On the one hand, they need to cut costs to make up for reduced demand but many also need to invest in digital technologies to enable remote working. Long-term, the cloud enables both of these goals to be met, allowing organizations to optimize their IT costs while keeping their employees safe.

In its new report, "Forecast: Public Cloud Services, Worldwide, 2018-2024, 3Q20 Update," Gartner said that it expected public cloud growth to continue through 2024, with corporate investment in mobility, collaboration and remote working unlikely to decrease even when the pandemic is over. In fact, in a post-COVID world, with many firms looking to quickly return to growth, investing in the cloud might be the best approach.

“The pandemic validated cloud’s value proposition,” Sid Nag, research vice president at Gartner, commented. “The ability to use on-demand, scalable cloud models to achieve cost efficiency and business continuity is providing the impetus for organisations to rapidly accelerate their digital business transformation plans. The increased use of public cloud services has reinforced cloud adoption to be the ‘new normal,’ now more than ever.”