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Cloud-native tools are becoming more popular in Europe than the US

As demands have matured, observability, sustainability and the need for open source must be catered to

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Companies across Europe are now adopting cloud-native technologies faster than companies in the US, but with specific demands in mind, according to a new study.

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Data suggests that Kubernetes and container use is now more common within Europe, as organisations look to firm up cloud-native technologies, with recent findings showing that 75% of back-end developers in Western Europe used containers in 2021, up 13% on the previous year and ahead of the US figure of 60%.

In contrast, demand for serverless architecture has plateaued, as firms seek to address specific market demands, while avoiding potential technical debt or vendor lock-in. Indeed, as cloud-native tools are more widely adopted, container migration services are becoming more widespread across the region, to assist enterprises in strategically scaling cloud-native technologies.

The figures were revealed as part of the 2022 ISG Provider Lens™ Cloud Native Services and Solutions report, published by tech advisory firm Information Services Group (ISG) on Friday.

As the market for cloud-native technologies matures, European businesses are increasingly seeking multi-cloud tools and mixed premises storage to address problems such as data sovereignty, with providers now moving to back up clients in meeting individual regulatory requirements.

Greater observability was identified as both a common goal among European businesses, and one that is increasingly complex. Cloud strategies increasingly extend to include DataOps, FinOps and SecOps, and maintaining full-stack observability is a key concern for decision-makers. A recent Dynatrace study revealed that 71% of CIOs worry their cloud complexity exceeds human ability, with 97% identifying various implementation barriers as preventing full-stack observability from being achieved.

As an extension of this demand for observability, firms are also seeking cloud-native tools with which they can measure their carbon impact. The concept of tracking carbon emissions to achieve software sustainability is growing in popularity among firms, and offers such as Google Cloud’s sustainability expansions offer cloud partners new ways to measure their carbon footprint.

Businesses are also relying more than ever on open source solutions, acknowledging that even commercial platforms such as those offering cloud security will necessarily integrate with open source solutions such as Prometheus. At the same time, firms recognise the need for ‘best of breed’ open source solutions, and programs such as Google’s Assured Open Source Software service to ensure that implementation does not compromise security.

The Cloud Native Computing Foundation (CNCF) states that the most popular certified Kubernetes platforms within Europe were Amazon EKS, Azure Kubernetes Service (AKS) and Google Kubernetes Engine (GKE).

“As enterprises pursue cloud-native strategies, many are tapping into the strengths of different public clouds, along with on-premises and edge environments,” said Bernie Hoecker, partner, enterprise cloud transformation, with ISG.

“This may make their architectures even more complex, but it helps them avoid technical debt or lock-in.”

The report also assessed the capabilities of 65 providers across five quadrants: managed container services, container platform solutions, hyperscaler cloud-native platforms, cloud-native observability solutions, and cloud-native security platforms. VMWare was named a leader in three of these quadrants, while Azure, AWS, and Google were all named leaders in hyperscaler cloud-native platforms, indicative of the rival firms’ strong competition at the top of the market.

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