Gartner recently conducted a study and found that the majority of new cloud computing deployments through 2012 will be private, not public clouds. The quote from research vice president Phil Dawson says it all:
Larger organisations will continue to have an IT organization that manages and deploys IT resources internally. Some of these will be ‘private clouds’, but not all. IT departments will also take on IT service sourcing responsibility – determining when to leverage external providers, when to deploy internally, and when to leverage both for specific services.
The reality of the future IT organization will be something of a combination of service deployment types, as integration, control and flexibility will drive the use of private cloud computing when the business case calls for it. As Gartner states, IT services used in the public cloud are standard across businesses, they’re not differentiators. Simply put, many of the vendor-hosted options that currently exist don’t offer the level intimacy, flexibility and control required to make them a success for the majority of businesses looking to grow and expand over time.
But I think Gartner’s results also speak to the importance that open source, proprietary software and standards-based software will play in coming together via cloud computing across applications and platforms. At its core, cloud computing is about shifting the source of computing power to offer users portability, flexibility and offer platforms for development, if not interoperability for consumers, and I see private, public and/or hybrid deployment options as being the key to delivering those results.