Worldwide Public Cloud Services Revenue Growth Remains Strong Through the First Half of 2017, According to IDC

FRAMINGHAM, Mass.--()--The worldwide public cloud services market grew 28.6% year over year in the first half of 2017 (1H17) with revenues totaling $63.2 billion, according to new results from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Semiannual Public Cloud Services Tracker. The revenue total for the first half of the year was slightly ahead of IDC's forecast.

"Public cloud adoption is accelerating in large part as enterprises recognize that the cloud has become the launchpad for virtually every new IT innovation in the last 24 months – including AI, blockchain, quantum computing and more. Organizations not on the public cloud will be increasingly isolated from the world of tech innovation," said Frank Gens, senior vice president and chief analyst at IDC.

While stronger than expected growth was seen across all regions, Asia/Pacific saw the highest regional growth at 38.9% and Asia/Pacific now represents 11.5% of all public cloud services revenues. A big part of this was driven by strong public cloud spending in China, which saw 55.6% year-over-year growth in the first half of 2017.

Among the three primary segments of public cloud services (SaaS, PaaS and IaaS), the SaaS segment, which holds 68.7% of overall market share, was the slowest growing segment with a 22.9% year-over-year growth rate.

"Businesses now think 'cloud first' when it comes to their IT strategy and software footprint, since the benefits of cloud are clear and have been broadly demonstrated in most industries," said Eric Newmark, program vice president for IDC's SaaS, Enterprise Applications, and Industry Cloud research practices. "Many companies have picked the low-hanging fruit, in terms of apps that could be easily moved to the cloud, and are now evaluating the migration of their next set of larger strategic systems (i.e. ERP, supply chain applications, etc.) to a SaaS model. These projects, coupled with companies' efforts to embrace digital transformation, will continue to fuel strong SaaS growth."

The smallest segment was PaaS with a 13.6% of the public cloud services market. However, the PaaS market continues to deliver stronger growth than the other two segments at 50.2% year over year in 1H17.

"The rapid adoption of container technology in the PaaS segment has given developers additional tools to accelerate application development and deployment that is important in the enterprise digital transformation journey," said Larry Carvalho, research manager, PaaS. "All vendors are modifying their solutions to bring automation into the entire application lifecycle, and developers are rewarding such vendors with higher than average gains."

The IaaS segment represented 17.8% of the public cloud services market in 1H17 and continues to exhibit strong year-over-year growth at 38.1%. Amazon Web Services leads this segment in market share and growth. In addition, the last three years have seen a resurgence of focus on public cloud IaaS by major technology companies. Notable among these are major North American technology players like Microsoft, Google, Oracle, and IBM; as well as Asia/Pacific-based providers such as Fujitsu, Alibaba, and Huawei.

"Growing interest from enterprises and continued investments by service providers has resulted in enhancements in the IaaS segment across multiple dimensions, including the range and granularity of IaaS offerings, value-added services available, and the broader partner ecosystem of services available to enable cloud adoption," said Deepak Mohan, research director, Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). "Recent introductions into the market, like Azure Stack and VMware Cloud on AWS, also enable easier hybrid IT models and reduce the barrier to cloud adoption for enterprises. Cumulatively, these are paving the way for the next wave of enterprise application deployments on public cloud IaaS."


Worldwide Public Cloud Services Revenue, Market Share, and Year-Over-Year Growth, 1H17
(revenues in US$ millions)




1H17 Market




1H16 Market


Year Growth

IaaS     $11,236     17.8%     $8,138     16.6%     38.1%
PaaS     $8,567     13.6%     $5,702     11.6%     50.2%
SaaS     $43,400     68.7%     $35,310     71.8%     22.9%
Total     $63,260     100%     $49,179     100%     28.6%
Source: IDC Worldwide Semiannual Public Cloud Services Tracker, 1H17

IDC's Worldwide Semiannual Public Cloud Services Tracker provides total market size and vendor share for more than seventy segments of the global public cloud services market. Measurement for this tracker is public cloud services revenue, which includes SaaS, PaaS and IaaS subscription revenues. The Tracker exposes 500 cloud services companies across a total of 49 countries globally. Annual five-year market forecasts for this Tracker are updated semiannually and include five-year annual market projections. Forecasts are available at worldwide, regional, and country levels.

For more information about IDC's Worldwide Semiannual Public Cloud Services Tracker, please contact Kathy Nagamine at 650-350-6423 or

About IDC
International Data Corporation (IDC) is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. With more than 1,100 analysts worldwide, IDC offers global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 110 countries. IDC's analysis and insight helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community to make fact-based technology decisions and to achieve their key business objectives. Founded in 1964, IDC is a wholly-owned subsidiary of International Data Group (IDG), the world's leading media, data and marketing services company that activates and engages the most influential technology buyers. To learn more about IDC, please visit Follow IDC on Twitter at @IDC and LinkedIn.

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Michael Shirer, 508-935-4200

Release Summary

The worldwide public cloud services market grew 28.6% year over year in the first half of 2017 with revenues totaling $63.2 billion, according to IDC.


Michael Shirer, 508-935-4200