CIF Make 2015 Cloud Predictions

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The Cloud Industry Forum (CIF) has set out its predictions for the Cloud industry for 2015, forecasting that by the end of the year, 90 per cent of organisations in the UK will have formally adopted at least one Cloud service.

According to the industry body, the end of support for Microsoft Windows Server 2003 in July 2015 will be the single biggest catalyst for the Cloud industry since the term was first coined.

CIF’s research indicates that Cloud adoption will reach another peak throughout 2015, increasing in breadth with more organisations overall using Cloud services, and in depth, as existing users expand their use of Cloud services.

Over 90 per cent of organisations will be using Cloud services by the end of the year, up from 78 per cent in 2014, and 60 per cent of these will use two or more material Cloud services.

This growth, according to Alex Hilton, CEO of CIF, will be driven in no small part by the end of support for Microsoft Windows Server 2003, which will create a new imperative for businesses to look to Cloud-based alternatives.

Hilton said: “In the period leading up to July 2015 the market faces the most significant IT refresh of the 21st century to date with the end of support of both Microsoft Windows Server 2003 and Small Business Server 2003. These products have not only underpinned the IT server market for the last decade they have been the basis upon which many local IT providers have built their businesses. In the UK alone, an average of 1000 servers per day are likely to need to be transitioned in the final year of support. Some customers will take the opportunity to move the server workloads to Cloud services, some will undertake a rudimentary incremental upgrade and others will take the opportunity to refine their IT strategy. The next 12 months represent a great opportunity for customers to make a Cloud migration and adopt the latest enterprise ready technology at a fraction of the price.

“Our research suggests that 61 per cent of UK organisations are still running Microsoft Windows Server 2003. This product has been supported for 11 years but technology has moved on. Doing nothing is not a viable option, the majority of users will move to Cloud or Managed Services. Cloud migrations tend to happen on needs-based activity – historically, users migrate because of a definitive business need, be it business growth, security, or in this case, a technology refresh cycle,” he continued.

Glenn Woolaghan, UK SMB Director, Microsoft Limited, added: “Migration to the Cloud presents businesses of all sizes with an opportunity to discover the right balance of simplicity, flexibility and cost and enable SMBs to take advantage of enterprise-grade features at start-up prices. By this we mean that businesses will be able to host applications in the way that bests suits their business and cost structure, whether on-site or in the cloud. They’ll also be able to grow efficiently and use only what they need, when they need it. Finally, employees of SMBs will be able to get their work done anywhere and work together easily with the latest cloud-based mobility and productivity solutions.”