Gartner predicts clouds for email

Cloud computing is set to takeover commercial email, as the percentage of such companies using the tech will rise from one per cent seen this year to 20 per cent by 2012, analyst house Gartner has predicted.

They anticipate this dramatic shift will be caused by falling prices of cloud computing, as well as new vendors becoming available in the industry.

"Events during the past year have created the conditions for the rapid growth of the cloud delivery model for enterprise e-mail, with companies such as Google, Yahoo, Dell and Microsoft all making major investments in cloud computing," said Matthew Cain, research vice president at Gartner.

Cain said that until recently, cloud computing has predominantly been used by small suppliers, because companies with fewer than 1,000 seats typically have the highest costs for e-mail, so they gain the most from implementing the cloud e-mail approach.

However, he said cloud e-mail has quickly been transforming into a market where the largest IT companies, including Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft, are competing aggressively.

Gartner predicts that the uptake of cloud e-mail will continue with small companies and move to midsize companies, and will be serving large firms with more than 50,000 seats by 2012.

"As large suppliers push into the cloud e-mail market we'll see a fundamental restructuring of the e-mail market," Cain explained. "Traditional e-mail software-as-a-service (SaaS) vendors will come under tremendous price pressure from mega-scale vendors. Established traditional dedicated server model hosting vendors will fare better based on their ability to offer larger-scale and more-customized e-mail."