Google, Microsoft ramp up enterprise cloud investments for 2022
by Paul Davenport Paul Davenport on

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While Amazon still has a commanding hold over the cloud market, a string of recent AWS outages and a spending spree by rival providers is heating up the competition—albeit among a handful of familiar players.

Most aggressive over the past year has been Google Cloud, which has seen its share of the market grow from 1 percent to 6 percent from 2020 to 2021, thanks in large part to a string of industry-specific acquisitions.

Since joining Google Cloud as CEO back in 2019, Thomas Kurian has steered investments ranging from a $450 million partnership with security system provider ADT, to a high-profile backing of Spanish-language media company Univision, to numerous partnerships with healthtec companies and a $1 billion venture with the futures-exchange firm CME Group.

While this still leaves Google Cloud far behind Amazon, whose AWS arm accounts for 41 percent of the market today, Google Cloud’s clout may continue to grow even without strategic acquisitions, as a recent string of AWS outages has pushed companies to be less passive about choosing a cloud provider.

Microsoft, whose Azure and related cloud offerings account for roughly 20 percent of the total market today, is taking a vertical-specific strategy with the aim of showing businesses a more “white glove” approach to cloud computing than they may have received in the past. Similar to Google, Microsoft is investing into emerging cloud technologies and vertical-specific cloud services, helping them more quickly bring “best fit” solutions to their cloud customer base via integration with existing popular toolsets.

Earlier in 2021, Microsoft made a massive investment into their healthcare cloud strategy by purchasing software developer Nuance Communications for $19.7 billion, for instance. With this acquisition, Microsoft can leverage Nuance’s voice recognition, AI, and natural language processing to refine its relatively young Microsoft Cloud for Healthcare suite.

Like Google, however, Microsoft is casting its net across industries, having also recently inked a deal with General Motors’ autonomous vehicle startup Cruise to use Microsoft Azure in both production and rollout.

But even as these Big 3 cloud providers flex their spending to cement their place among a diverse array of enterprise customers, there are still a wealth of cloud services (and even emerging cloud giants like Oracle, who recently made their own $28 billion cloud acquisition) for enterprises to choose from.

To that end, it’s unlikely that any company will leverage a single cloud provider for all of their web services, SaaS, and workflows given the state of the modern enterprise. Not just industry-by-industry, but even by department within the same company, there are tools and solutions that arrive to end users via a slew of different cloud providers and network pathways that are all critical to the business when working in concert.

For enterprise IT to keep pace with this constantly changing reality, they need to leverage solutions that take a vendor-agnostic approach to delivering network visibility. This way, whatever cloud solution or service users need to perform, IT can gain visibility into the entire end-to-end network path to understand the root cause of any hiccups.

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Filed Under: Industry Insights

Tags: IT transformation , enterprise IT , enterprise network , enterprise cloud , cloud computing , cloud migration , cloud transformation , cloud adoption , microsoft , azure , google cloud , google , aws , amazon , network performance monitoring , network monitoring , network management

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