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New York – Consumer adoption of Cloud storage has taken off faster than expected with an estimated 375 million people worldwide now using one of the services, according to IHS iSuppli.
iSuppli had forecast that about 500 million people would sign up for cloud storage service by the end of 2012, but after the halfway point in the year this the figure had already hit 375 million. IHS has not changed its forecast for the year.
Figuring out a year-over-year increase is difficult, the company said, because cloud storage was brand new in 2011. However, IHS estimated that about 150 million people were taking advantage of such services at that time.
Looking forward an estimated 625 million people are expected to sign on next year, with 1.3 billion doing so by 2017.
While the overall future for cloud services remains bright, IHS believes the pure-play cloud providers could struggle in coming years. The company pointed to how technology giants like Amazon, Apple, Microsoft and Google are offering their own cloud services at near or below the cost of Dropbox, Carbonite and Mozy.
IHS believes all cloud providers will continue to lose money going forward and the pure-play providers could find it difficult to remain financially viable.
One possible way out of this box, IHS said, would be for the pure-play cloud companies to partner with mobile network providers. The mobile network providers could find it useful to offer cloud services to their customers as a way to retain user loyalty. IHS analysts believe people with a large amount of data stored with a specific company would be less likely to leave at the end of their contract so they would not have to migrate their data.
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