CloudHealth by VMware Report: Sharp Spike in Container Adoption

A report published today by CloudHealth by VMware, a provider of observability tools accessed via a software-as-a-service (SaaS) platform, finds container adoption increased 37% from January to September 2020. The report also says overall spend on containers increased 50% over the same period.

In addition, adoption of serverless computing frameworks increased 13.5%, the report finds.

Based on spending data from nearly 500 organizations worldwide collected over five months, CloudHealth by VMware CTO Joe Kinsella says the report suggests organizations are embracing cloud-native technologies to both develop new applications and encapsulate legacy applications in a way that makes it simpler to “lift and shift” them into the cloud. The report finds overall cloud spending is now 19.3% higher than it was at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, the report also finds compute usage in the cloud dropped 3.5% in May 2020, and continued to decline on a month-to-month basis. Kinsella says it appears organizations are getting more adept at optimizing cloud computing environments by both using resources more efficiently and relying on various discount pricing programs offered by cloud service providers.

Finally, the report notes database spending in the cloud remained relatively flat from January to September 2020, but that cloud storage spending was 5.6% higher.

Kinsella says the report makes it clear that IT environments are diversifying at a faster rate. In turn, that diversity is creating a level of complexity that many IT organizations are struggling to manage, Kinsella says.

For the most part, internal IT teams continue to manage on-premises IT environments, while individual lines of business within an organization, especially those driving digital business transformation initiatives, are accelerating the rate at which cloud-native applications, built using containers, are deployed in the cloud, Kinsella says.

Developers working for a line of business within an organization generally prefer to rely on a cloud service provider to manage container infrastructure, such as Kubernetes, on their behalf, Kinsella says. However, more of those development teams also employ multiple clouds for different classes of application workloads, Kinsella says.

Soon, those two distinct IT worlds will converge. In the meantime, however, because of organizational inertia, Kinsella says the two distinct classes of IT environments may live side-by-side for years.

Regardless of which team is managing those application environments, Kinsella says the rate of change is making it increasingly difficult for internal IT teams to keep pace. IT teams will need to apply DevOps best practices more consistently across the enterprise, Kinsella says. Today, most organizations tend to have varying levels of DevOps maturity spanning multiple departments.

In the longer term, Kinsella says more organizations will increasingly rely on vendors to manage IT infrastructure on their behalf. Many manual IT tasks will also become increasingly automated using AI models trained by vendors, notes Kinsella.

Collectively, Kinsella says the end goal is to enable organizations to devote more resources to building and deploying cloud-native applications rather than continuing to manage IT infrastructure.

Mike Vizard

Mike Vizard is a seasoned IT journalist with over 25 years of experience. He also contributed to IT Business Edge, Channel Insider, Baseline and a variety of other IT titles. Previously, Vizard was the editorial director for Ziff-Davis Enterprise as well as Editor-in-Chief for CRN and InfoWorld.

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