We've been watching the cloud infrastructure market for a long time, using Synergy Research's numbers as a baseline. Looking at those past numbers, AWS has always had a huge lead with over a third of the market. Microsoft, Google, and IBM were less than half of that when you put all their market share numbers together.
Synergy Research came out with some new research last week, breaking out the pure public cloud infrastructure market, and when it looked at the numbers through that prism, AWS's lead was even more pronounced with a whopping 45 percent. Microsoft, Google, and IBM were less than 20 percent combined.
That's all to be expected, but where it gets interesting is when you look at the other categories where AWS suddenly doesn't have the same dominant position. In public Platform as a Service (which involves programming services aimed at developers), AWS has about a third of the market. Salesforce, Microsoft, and IBM combined have a smidgen more combined than AWS, but AWS still holds serve there. Finally, we wrote about IBM's slow climb out of its revenue hole recently, and Synergy shows that IBM is the leader in the private cloud with around 15 percent of the market. AWS has always concentrated on the public cloud, yet still shows up along with NTT and Rackspace in the combined market category in second place. Perhaps the fact that NTT and Rackspace are on the board at all is the biggest surprise with so many companies vying for that private cloud market (including Microsoft).
Why the break out?
I asked Synergy Research's John Dinsdale, why they broke it out this way this time after showing a combined market share in previous reports. "This time we decided to share a bit more detail to highlight the differences in the various market segments. In breaking out the segments, the big difference with what you’ve seen in the past is that AWS does much better in public cloud and IBM does much better in private," Dinsdale explained.
When I asked him to break out those second place numbers by company, he wouldn't say. "I am not at liberty to provide exact market shares for the companies in public IaaS and PaaS, but I can tell you that Microsoft is a very clear #2 in IaaS." (That's actually pretty clear from previous reports.)
All of this is quite interesting in the context of recent earnings reports. While Amazon reported AWS revenue surged again, up to $3.2 billion for the quarter, Wall Street wasn't kind to Amazon in after-hours trading. Meanwhile, Microsoft reported good cloud numbers for the quarter, and Wall Street lavished love upon them driving the stock prices to the highest point since the Windows/Office heyday in 1999. IBM stock was mixed after its most recent earnings report.
These numbers for the most part, show what we all suspected anyway, that AWS dominates the cloud, especially public cloud infrastructure, but has a strong presence in the other market categories as well, making it the cloud powerhouse we always knew it was.