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Hybrid cloud market matures, but competition still fierce

As more enterprises set their sights on hybrid and multi-cloud deployments, vendors race to align themselves and their technology with those models.

In this episode of EMA Cloud Rants -- a cloud-focused video series hosted by analyst firm EMA -- we discuss the evolving multi- and hybrid cloud market and how leading IT vendors compare in terms of their support for those deployment models. While no two vendors take exactly the same approach, they all attempt to tap into enterprises' growing interest in using a mix of private and public cloud platforms.

Of the four major hyperscale cloud providers -- AWS, Microsoft, Google and IBM -- it seems that most enterprises, at least those with existing VMware environments, gravitate toward the first two in their pursuit of a hybrid cloud implementation.

"It's actually a half-half split between Microsoft and AWS," says Jens Soeldner, independent IT consultant and vExpert. "If you look at the VMware customers, they are definitely going for AWS, because of their VMware on AWS offering."

Azure, for its part, also has a hybrid cloud service specifically tailored toward VMware workloads. But the vendor also has a hybrid cloud play in its Azure Stack appliance, which especially appeals to big Microsoft shops.

"If the customer comes from a Microsoft background and is already experimenting with Azure in the public cloud, then they are obviously a little more enthusiastic about Microsoft Azure Stack," Soeldner adds.

But hyperscale IaaS providers aren't the only ones trying to stake a claim in the multi- and hybrid cloud market. While Docker and Red Hat, for example, push container technology for workload portability across cloud platforms, legacy hardware vendors even have some skin in the game.

Cisco, for instance, has partnered with Google to provide a hybrid cloud offering that bundles Kubernetes orchestration, management capabilities through Istio, hyper-converged infrastructure and more.

Ultimately, though, which vendors succeed in the multi- and hybrid cloud market -- whether a hyperscale or a legacy hardware provider -- will depend largely on the compute and development services that they offer further "up the stack." Serverless capabilities, for example, will increasingly hold more sway over which providers enterprises choose to underpin their multi- and hybrid cloud infrastructures.

Tune in to the video above to learn more about these trends and what's to come in hybrid cloud.

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Which IaaS provider do you think has the strongest hybrid cloud strategy?
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