Report: Microsoft Cloud Still Half the Size of AWS

A new report in the Wall Street Journal claims that Amazon Web Services (AWS) commands 41 percent market share in the commercial cloud market, compared to just 20 percent for Microsoft and 6 percent for Google. This despite many years of research, investment, partnerships, and improvements.

Microsoft, a distant number two in this market, has invested in its Azure-based cloud services and has struck partnerships with firms like Grab Holding and General Motors in a bid to catch up to Amazon.

But the WSJ article is mostly about Google, which grew its share of the market by 1 percentage point in 2021, in part by aping Microsoft’s strategy.

“In certain instances, Google pursues investments and partnerships in attractive growth areas, which is a common practice across many companies within the enterprise industry,” a Google spokesperson told the publication when asked about its strategy for competing with much bigger players in this space.

The stakes are high for Google because the vast majority of its revenues still come from advertising. But instead of just trying to buy share, Google is instead striking partnerships of its own and investing its cloud technology. Google Cloud recorded more revenue in the first nine months of 2021 than it did in all of 2020, the publication notes. The business is expected to grow 50 percent to almost $20 billion for the full year.

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  • Greg Green

    30 December, 2021 - 9:44 am

    <p>This seems like good progress for MS. I wasn’t sure if they were being dusted by Amazon, but I think this says they’re in the game as long as they’re not losing market share.</p>

  • nine54

    Premium Member
    30 December, 2021 - 9:45 am

    <p>Azure revenues seem to be on par with AWS (a direct comparison is difficult), so despite having half of AWS’s market share, Azure may be more profitable. Azure definitely is luring in enterprise workloads.</p>

  • mattbg

    Premium Member
    30 December, 2021 - 11:08 am

    <p>One concern that I know some companies have about Amazon in particular and Google to a lesser extent is the degree to which these companies will use data gained about your business through operations – even if it’s just traffic flows and volumes – to move into your company’s space, understand the dynamics of your business, and become direct competitors. We know that Amazon does that on the retail side already, so it’s not a fictional concern.</p><p><br></p><p>Also, a lot of companies are wisely following a hybrid cloud strategy that allows the use of one or multiple cloud vendors integrated with cloud-like on-prem services as needs dictate. It’s less efficient but has obvious benefits. It won’t completely avoid lock-in, but it does put businesses in a better position to negotiate and shift workloads between vendors, so I imagine that the market will remain fluid.</p><p><br></p><p>IMO, the bigger story is how many "operator" and "administrator" type jobs are being shed as this progresses. It’s about time: the writing has been on the wall for a long time, but if all you do is install and configure software packages; watch a pane of glass and read a manual when things turn red; or call someone when they turn red, your job has already been automated and it’s just a matter of when you will need to step up a bit more and do something more challenging.</p>

  • anoldamigauser

    Premium Member
    30 December, 2021 - 12:39 pm

    <p>I do not understand why any company would trust Google with that much data about its operations. While they may not use data collected for advertising purposes to your users, they are not turning off the tracking that their products do.</p><p>I worked for a large university, which used both Office 365 and G-Suite. There was a push to have the academic side use the Google side of things. About three months later, the edict was to make sure that the professors were not using Google products for collaboration. If you know anything about academia, you know things like that do not happen quickly unless something bad happens. We were not told, but my guess was that some research managed to be found in a general search when it should not have.</p><p><br></p>

    • mattbg

      Premium Member
      30 December, 2021 - 3:00 pm

      <p>It could even be down to something fishy in the terms and conditions. In some early "free" products offered for collaboration, the T&amp;C sometimes contained terms that could be interpreted as saying that the company providing the free site owned any ideas generated using the tools they offered :)</p>

    • geoff

      02 January, 2022 - 6:43 am

      <p><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">"I do not understand why any company would trust Google with that much data about its operations. While they may not use data collected for advertising purposes to your users, they are not turning off the tracking that their products do."</span></p><p><br></p><p><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">Some people simply do not understand that data has "value".</span></p><p><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">Google preys on those people, and those companies.</span></p>

  • tobiulm

    30 December, 2021 - 3:42 pm

    <p>"I did not get why the world needed the third ecosystem in cloud unless we changed the rules …" not my words…</p>

  • illuminated

    30 December, 2021 - 6:52 pm

    <p>Some companies like walmart refuse to use AWS because it is owned by their competitor. There are more companies that do not wish to use AWS. Google cloud could be an option but Google is adtech company that likes killing products quickly. That leaves Microsoft which is mostly a tech company that maintains products forever and is not in retail. So the future for Microsoft is bright if they do not screw up.</p>

    • bats

      31 December, 2021 - 9:36 am

      <p>LOL….are you kidding? For one thing, Google kills off products quickly? LOL….that’s not true. Gmail still exists. So does Chrome, Drive, Youtube, Youtube TV, Youtube Music, Voice, etc….. LOL…even Stadia is still around. However, the little "free stuff" or close to free, are the ones that gets killed because no one uses them. If there is any company that kills their products, it’s Microsoft…..BIG TIME. Products such as Photodraw, PictureIt, Streets and Maps, Money, UltimateTV, Microsoft router, Microsoft Band (lol), Windows Phone (i.e. HP Elite X3). Do I need to go on? </p><p><br></p><p>It’s true, Google experiments alot, but it doesn’t "kill" products quickly, as other tech bloggers like to indicate. Like Microsoft, they know when to kill it……….when no one else is using it. I don’t know if it still exists, but that’s what Google Labs was for. As for the stuff Google kills, no one ever even heard of them. </p><p><br></p><p>"S<span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">o the future for Microsoft is bright if they do not screw up." Bright? LOL….yeah right. Tell that to Cortana. </span></p>

    • locust_infested_orchard_inc.

      03 January, 2022 - 11:35 pm

      <p>Quote, "<em>Google cloud could be an option but Google is adtech company</em>"</p><p><br></p><p>Not only is Google an ad in-ya-face thrusting bar stirred, Google is also one of the most prolific data traffickers out there.</p>

  • vladimir

    Premium Member
    30 December, 2021 - 8:20 pm

    <p>If I understand correctly AWS makes a huge profit that is partly used to subsidize Amazon as a retailer, which in turn is killing all commerce globally. If this is the case, I wonder how something like this is even allowed</p>

    • locust_infested_orchard_inc.

      03 January, 2022 - 11:28 pm

      <p>The US Congress are currently mulling the anti-competitive practices of big tech, and in relation to Amazon, whether AWS should be forced to be split from the e-commerce business.</p><p><br></p><p>Knowing this, Jeff Bezos (executive chairman of Amazon), Andy Jassy (CEO of Amazon, former CEO of AWS), and Adam Selipsky (CEO of AWS), may well attempt to counter any potential attempt by Congress to break Amazon apart by the aforementioned trio, in demerging AWS from Amazon under their terms.</p>

  • bats

    31 December, 2021 - 9:56 am

    <p>If anybody really cares about Microsoft and this space, don’t. Live everything else, that is not computer-desktop OS related, this one is lost too. AWS is strong, (in some cases) its cheaper, and its very reliable. In my profession, I deal with millions and millions of legal reviewable documents for litigation. We review these docs in an online platform hosted by some of the biggest vendors in the legal tech industry, who I often am in contact with. Pretty much all of them chose AWS and only one chose Azure. When my firm explored the idea of hosting our own (virtual) server to run a particular commercial online application, I was given a choice by a vendor between AWS and Azure and the earlier was cheaper. Not just that, but there was also a lot of price configurations that can be made with AWS as opposed to Azure. Albeit, that was about 3-4 years ago, things may have changed. However, if I remember correctly it seems that Azure just got stronger and more popular now, than it was then. So if you ask me, Microsoft’s only worry is Google. If I were Microsoft I would be very worried about that. </p>

    • sergeluca

      Premium Member
      31 December, 2021 - 10:44 am

      <p>What about Office 365? It is not desktop related and here MS is number 1 by far. Including for document management (SharePoint online) and collaboration (SharePoint online and Teams).</p>

    • locust_infested_orchard_inc.

      03 January, 2022 - 11:31 pm

      <p>No need for Microsoft to worry about Google catching up, as everyone knows Google is a data trafficker.</p>

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