Gartner this week released its Magic Quadrant for public cloud storage and Amazon Web Services is the clear market leader, while Microsoft Azure comes in a close second place.
Microsoft may be giving Amazon some competition in this market, but Gartner estimates that Amazon’s Simple Storage Service (S3), the company’s default block storage product, is 1.6 bigger than all of the other 7 storage offerings that made the cut to be in the Magic Quadrant. “Amazon Web Services (AWS) dominates the IaaS market and has the most comprehensive storage offerings,” Gartner analysts Raj Bala and Arun Chandrasekaran unabashedly report. The analysts give Microsoft credit for having a solid Blob storage offering and enterprise focus, but say the company is an innovation laggard behind AWS.
Trailing Amazon and Microsoft are Google and IBM SoftLayer, but Gartner says both of those companies public cloud storage offerings have shortfalls compared to the two leaders. Google is working to appeal its offering to enterprise customers, while IBM has undifferentiated offerings for this market.
Rackspace, Alibaba, Oracle and AT&T also made the list. But Gartner warns that this public cloud storage market could be quite volatile in the coming years. Bala and Chandrusekaran predict that by 2019 at least two of these providers will bow out of the market. AT&T licenses EMC’s Virtustream cloud platform to run its storage portfolio. Rackspace is transitioning from operating its own cloud services to helping customers manage their use of cloud providers, so either one of them could be candidates.
Public cloud storage will be an increasingly important market for enterprises though, even though it comes with risks. Bala and Chandrusekaran say that by 2020 up to 80% of data breaches from public cloud storage services will be related to misconfigurations by the customer, mismanaged credentials by users or insider thefts; but they will not be because of the cloud providers infrastructure.