27 April 2018
| James Pearce
The most recent Synergy Research Group figures on hyperscale operators, cloud infrastructure services, unified communications-as-a-service and collaboration
The rise of hyperscale
Hyperscale operators ploughed more than $22 billion in
capital expenditure in the final quarter of 2017, meaning total
spend for the year reached almost $75 billion.
The figures, provided by Synergy Research Group, showed a
19% year on year growth as operators continued to build and
expand their data centre footprints. Overall, the number of
hyperscale data centres now tops 400.
The top five spenders were Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Apple
and Facebook who between them account for over 70% of spend in
the final quarter of 2017. The top 10 spenders was made up of
the likes of Alibaba, IBM, Oracle, SAP and Tencent.
Across the whole hyperscale footprint, 2017 capex equated to
around 7% of total revenues, with the top five spending on
aggregate well over $13 billion per quarter. Capex more than
doubled at Alibaba and spend from the likes of Oracle and SAP
was also above average.
AWS dominates cloud infrastructure
Overall, Amazon continued to dominate spend on cloud
infrastructure services, which includes
Infrastructure-as-a-Service, platform-as-a-service, hosted and
private cloud. Microsoft, Google and Alibaba all increased
their share of the worldwide market too, all at the expense of
IBM maintained its position as the third largest cloud
provider, behind Amazon and Microsoft, while Google was just
behind, according to SRG. Alibaba, meanwhile, joined the top
five cloud operators for the first time as it saw its cloud
UC continues to rise
Growth in the unified communications-as-a-service (UCaaS)
market also continued unabated, according to 2017 figures
released by Synergy, with more than 300,000 subscriber seats
added to the global installed base in Q4 2017. This was the
fourth consecutive quarter of strong growth and the sector is
now growing by 29% per year.
Mitel and RingCentral continued to battle for market
leadership, with the former showing stronger growth in the
quarter, although still not topping RingCentral in terms of
The two accounted for well over half of all seat growth in
the quarter, SRG said, with 8x8 and Fuze ranked third and
fourth respectively. 8x8 is the third largest in terms of
installed base, with Cisco/Broadsoft fourth.
Collaborate and listen
The collaboration market also reached an all-time high in
2017 of just shy of $10 billion in revenues, driven by a tight
battle at the top between Cisco and Microsoft.
Total Q4 revenues include enterprise voice, UC applications,
telepresence, email software, enterprise content management,
enterprise social networks and a range of hosted/cloud
communications and applications. Hosted/cloud saw a significant
26% growth while premise-based declined by 4%.
Cisco’s market share stayed relatively stable
across the four quarters of 2017, while Microsoft saw its share
grow as the year progressed, with the former topping the latter
by less than a percentage point in Q4.
Cisco still has a significant lead in the premise-based
collaboration market, but Microsoft is dominant in the
hosted/cloud sections, according to Synergy figures. IBM and
Avaya then follow in third and fourth, respectively, but are
some way behind in terms of market share.
Beyond the top four vendors, other major players in the
market include Mitel, Google, Polycom, LogMeIn, Genesys,
AT&T, Verizon, RingCentral, UNIFY and ALE.