Amazon Web Services is seeing its 'growth engine' change from infrastructure services to platform, as a new report shows how it continues to dominate the cloud wars (AMZN, MSFT)


FILE PHOTO: Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos discusses his company's new Fire smartphone at a news conference in Seattle, Washington June 18, 2014. REUTERS/Jason Redmond

  • Amazon is growing “aggressively” in platform-as-a-service, a key segment of the cloud market, Gartner analyst Ed Anderson told Business Insider.
  • This underscores Amazon increasingly dominant position in cloud computing, even as Microsoft, Alibaba and Google also remained formidable rivals.
  • Amazon’s share of the core infrastructure-as-a-service segment of the cloud has slipped, as its “growth engine” has shifted to platform services, Anderson said.
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Amazon has recently become even more dominant in the cloud as it grew more rapidly in a key segment of that market, a tech expert said Thursday.

Amazon has been grabbing more share in platform-as-a-service (PaaS) — the segment that makes it easier for customers to write and run cloud software by removing the need for developers to worry about individual servers and other aspects of infrastructure, focusing instead on the programming tools and processes they need.

“In platform-as-a-service, Amazon is growing very aggressively, that’s why they are picking up significant share,” Gartner analyst Ed Anderson told Business Insider. 

Amazon held 31.3% of the $25 billion market in 2018, up from 28%, according to Gartner. Rival Microsoft had 15%, up from 12%. Salesforce had 11%, followed by SAP, Oracle, Alibaba, Google and IBM with single digit shares.

Amazon remains the biggest player in infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS), which covers the basic components of a cloud platform, including access to servers and storage. Amazon’s share of the $32 billion market actually slipped last year to 47.8% from 49.4%. Microsoft rose to 15.5% from 12.7%. Other players in the top 5 were Alibaba, Google and IBM.

Anderson said he didn’t consider the change an indication that Amazon had started to lose market share.

“They have such a huge percentage of share as it stands that it’s hard position to sustain,” he said. “So we’re seeing a little bit of what I would consider normalization the market, and not really a failure by Amazon to hold market share.”

The IaaS space, considered the core segment of the cloud market, “is consolidating,” Anderson said. As the market matures, says Anderson, companies are moving beyond just using IaaS to set up servers in the cloud, and have an increased appetite for higher-end services that can help them build better software.

“We’re seeing some leveling between the top vendors, which is why Amazon is coming down. But Amazon’s growth engine is shifting toward more of the value-added platform services.”

That’s significant for Amazon since platform-as-a-service is expected to drive more cloud growth as more businesses require more tools in setting up their infrastructure in the cloud.

“Amazon, because of its dominant position in infrastructure, is sort of a natural inheritor of the growth,” Anderson said.

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