Forbes suggesting Interest in Cloud computing has peaked

On 29 May 2012 by in Category Article


According to latest article posted on by  ” Reuven Cohen, on cloud computing , he mentioned clearly via his article ” I wouldn’t go as far as to say the cloud is dead just yet, but there is a growing sense that  interest in cloud computing, at least from the point of view of a buzz word, has peaked.”

He further went ahead in sharing some of his interesting findings he made via Google Insights, that supports “Gartner hype cycle”

Recent stats from Google’s Insights service  appear to confirm the trend. Using the Google Insights service, which attempts to gauge web search interest, I compared both the terms “cloud computing” and “the cloud”. What I discovered is that interest in both terms is down significantly from its previous highs set back in June 2011. According to Google, the level of web search interest is sitting roughly at July 2010 levels and dropping fast. Although its forecast does show an uptick for the coming months, which to me seems unlikely given the trend over the last year. Keep in mind this particular stat says nothing of revenue or venture funding, it purely shows web search interest. But it’s an interesting metric none the less. I’ve include a screenshot below.











So what does this all mean? Gartner was right. Cloud Computing is now beyond it’s peak of inflated expectations and moving quickly into what they describe as a trough of disillusionment.

For those not familar with the Gartner hype cycle, Wikipedia outlines its five phases as follows;

“Technology Trigger” — The first phase of a hype cycle is the “technology trigger” or breakthrough, product launch or other event that generates significant press and interest.

“Peak of Inflated Expectations” — In the next phase, a frenzy of publicity typically generates over-enthusiasm and unrealistic expectations. There may be some successful applications of a technology, but there are typically more failures.

” Trough of Disillusionment” — Technologies enter the “trough of disillusionment” because they fail to meet expectations and quickly become unfashionable. Consequently, the press usually abandons the topic and the technology.

“Slope of Enlightenment” — Although the press may have stopped covering the technology, some businesses continue through the “slope of enlightenment” and experiment to understand the benefits and practical application of the technology.

“Plateau of Productivity” — A technology reaches the “plateau of productivity” as the benefits of it become widely demonstrated and accepted. The technology becomes increasingly stable and evolves in second and third generations. The final height of the plateau varies according to whether the technology is broadly applicable or benefits only a niche market.














Giving emphasis on the importance of private and public cloud , he also mentioned the facts supporting the concepts:-

Gartner also recently noted that “Private cloud computing has taken over from more-general cloud computing at the top of the peak, while cloud/Web platforms have fallen toward the Trough of Disillusionment since 2010.” Google seems to confirm Gartner’s thesis. Gartner also predicts that the most transformational technologies included in the Hype Cycle will include virtualization within two years; Big Data, Cloud Advertising, Cloud Computing, Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), and Public Cloud computing between two and five years; and Community Cloud, DevOps, Hybrid Cloud Computing and Real-time Infrastructure in five to ten years. So yes, the term cloud anyway, seems here to stay.

Does it really matter if the term cloud computing has peaked? Probably not. If anything, it will be nice to have some products and services described by what they actually do, rather than being described by what has become nothing more than a meaningless marketing metaphor applied to anything and everything that touches the Internet.

On Reply to this article there were some interesting and very informative and mind bogling posts replied by readers sharing few thoughts with you :-


“I still recall the first time I signed up for cloud resources on Amazon Web Services in 2009, and how easy and simple the process was. All I had to do was complete the form, provide a credit card number, and for about $200 in a matter of minutes I had multiple servers in a load balanced environment, with desired scalability and was ready to transact. I was truly amazed knowing how much hardware and software was put to work so quickly with just a few clicks of a button! The cost in both time and money would have been significant if I had to buy, install, configure, host and manage all that gear myself. I couldn’t stop thinking about the profound impact this would have on the world. Suddenly, starting a new business and having massive resources available from Day 1 at a fraction of the cost and time it would normally take became a reality. What once seemed to be a huge barrier to entry, or to scale your business to the next level, now appeared to be nothing more than a utility anyone could order, use at will and pay only for what was actually used—much like how we use electricity today. Hardly anyone uses generators to power his or her house or office, except in emergency situations, but rather, we all depend on energy companies to power our lives at the touch of a switch.”



I agree, and I’ve seen these Gartner hype cycle graphs before. Though they contain some interesting tidbits and sound bites, they are selling classic Gartner contrarianism (as you know, Gartner sells the contrarian angle in many areas). And, like most cloud (and other) computing and IT Service Management articles, it does a poor job by either missing, mixing, or confusing its audience, especially in relation to (what ITIL calls) Service Provider Types (i.e., Type I, II, or III).

As an example, for a managed hosting (Type III) provider like, Infrastructure- and Platform-as-a-Service (IaaS and PaaS) have not only been in the “plateau of productivity” for some time, but indeed it has been their core business (i.e., bread and butter).

Try telling them PaaS is “still mostly hype” right now! If you were to take this graph at its word, they are at the height of the “hype cycle,” and won’t reach the “plateau of productivity” for some time. This article (and graph) almost denies the paradigm shift (like many missed Apple’s “Ecosystem Domination” shift). My guess is that this article targets mostly internal service providers (i.e. Type I) and/or those who manage them.

Sadly, some CIO’s will still be pondering such articles while (or just before) they are fired and hole swaths of their IT functions (and departments!) are being outsourced to Rackspace, Amazon, and/or Google. The problem for such CIOs is that many are managed by CFOs who get the ROI/TCO of these new business/IT models, and, unlike their CIO underlings, are not emotionally attached to their IT Infrastructure, “functional areas,” slots/positions, etc!

Yes, this curve will apply to the big beauracracies more as they will be slower to adopt/realize, but the even bodies that oversee them are already starting to act like the now-getting-wise CFO.