Market predictions made by IT analyst house Forrester Research suggest that Amazon may have gained the greatest ground so far in terms of garnering and harnessing software application developer interest when it comes to building cloud-based applications.
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A global study has put the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) forward as the most popular service identified by programmers with 71% of respondents placing it ahead of Microsoft Azure at 25%. Google comes in at a close third with 23% of interest and Salesforce.com's Force.com brings up an equal rear also at 23% of the total.
Amazon also gains the lion's share of those programmers who say they expect to move to building cloud-based applications using the service during the coming year ahead. Only 19% of developers plan to use Azure (according to Forrester) compared to 43% who cite direct intentions to program for Amazon.
If Forrester's "findings" are to be believed, there is an interesting and marked lack of additional or alternative cloud services in use from other well-established big-brand IT players such as SAP, Oracle, HP, and IBM.
Principal Forrester analyst James Staten suggests that Amazon Web Services (AWS) is now the "recognized pioneer in the market" and its early lead and constant innovation on this early base has attracted the largest base of early adopters and the software developers who want their business.
"The traditional tech players are all playing catchup," said Staten.
"Some market players took a differentiated approach by initially offering a PaaS solution instead of IaaS — Microsoft and Google most prominently. While this approach empowers developers arguably more, it does so in a way that limits what they can do. So far the majority of the cloud developers we have researched said they do not want these constraints and instead prefer either IaaS or a combination of IaaS and higher services, such as PaaS or discrete cloud services. They want the higher level abstraction until they don't."