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Report: Microsoft Azure Holds Steady at No. 2, Except in Asia

In an increasingly globalized public cloud market, the runaway leaders remain Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft Azure -- except in the Asia Pacific (APAC) region, where newcomer Alibaba continues to disrupt.

That's one of the takeaways of a recent report from Synergy Research Group analyzing the global public cloud market during the first quarter of the year.

Confirming past research, the new study shows the market is mostly dominated by No. 1 AWS and runner-up Azure, with Google Cloud Platform (GCP) rounding out the top three. The notable exception is in the APAC.

"Asia Pacific is the one region where the ranking differs, thanks to the prominence of the Chinese market and the dominance of local cloud providers in China," Synergy researchers said. "That results in Alibaba being ranked second in the APAC region and fourth worldwide. IBM, Salesforce and Tencent fill out the other top five slots in the regions, the latter thanks to its position in China."

Public cloud market share rankings by region. (Source: Synergy Research Group)

Whereas Synergy said public cloud computing is essentially a global market with little local differentiation, the top five cloud providers in China are local companies.

Synergy measured revenue for public Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) vendors in its Q1 2018 report, published in late June.

"This is a game of scale and to be a market leader demands vast ongoing investments, a global presence and a global brand," said John Dinsdale, a chief analyst and research director at Synergy. "Of course there will often be local issues that might enable local companies to carve out niche positions for themselves, but they will remain small local players in a specific country or sub-region. It is also true that in such cases the global leaders can usually deploy different local strategies to enable them to succeed. With the glaring exception of China, we view this as a truly global market."

About the Author

David Ramel is the editor of Visual Studio Magazine.

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