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Hyperscalers accounted for half of all new data centres in 2020

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As the number of data centres continues to climb, new research has confirmed what many suspect: Amazon, Microsoft and Google are saturating the hyperscale market.

Among the hyperscale, the three collectively account for over half of all major data centre facilities. Further, Amazon and Google opened the highest number of new facilities in the last 12 months, accounting for half of all new stock in 2020.

The findings, published by Synergy Research, show that more than 70% of all hyperscale data centres are located in facilities leased from data centre operators or owned by partners of the hyperscale operators.

“There were 111 new hyperscale data centres opened in the last eight quarters, with 52 of those coming onstream in 2020 despite Covid-19 causing a few logistical issues,” said John Dinsdale, a chief analyst at Synergy Research Group.

“That is testament to the ongoing robust growth in the digital services that are driving those investments – particularly cloud computing, SaaS, e-commerce, gaming and video services. We did actually see a handful of older hyperscale data centers shut down in 2020, but those numbers pale besides the number of newly opened or planned sites. In addition to almost 600 operational data centers, we have visibility of a further 219 that are at various stages of planning or building, which is good news indeed for data center hardware vendors and wholesale data center operators.”

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The research is based on an analysis of the data centre footprint of 20 of the world’s major cloud and internet service firms, including the largest operators in SaaS, IaaS, PaaS, search, social networking, e-commerce and gaming.

The companies with the broadest data centre footprint are also leading cloud providers: Amazon, Microsoft, Google and IBM. Each has 60 or more data centre locations with at least three in each of the four regions analysed– North America, APAC, EMEA and Latin America.

The findings said that Oracle and Alibaba also have a "notably broad data centre presence".

Global growth

Assessing the market by territory, the US took the global lead with "almost 40%" of major cloud and internet data centre sites located across the country. It was followed in the league table by China, Japan, Germany, the UK and Australia – however, collectively they account for a mere 29% of the total.

Over the last four quarters new data centres were opened in 17 different countries, with the US, South Korea, China, Canada, UAE, Indonesia, Italy and South Africa having the largest number of additions.

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