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Communications of the ACM

China Region Special Section: Big Trends

Cloud Bursting for the World's Largest Consumer Market

binary rain on cityscape, illustration

Credit: Valery Brozhinsky

Cloud infrastructure is information technology consisting of various hardware resources and software technologies. It enables ubiquitous access to shared pools of configurable system resources and higher-level services that can be delivered with minimal management effort, often through the Internet. Cloud infrastructure today is a critical platform for many applications, providing basic support for the development of emerging areas, including big data, the Internet of Things (IoT), and artificial intelligence (AI). In 2016, International Data Corporation's Cloud Computing Survey reported cloud technology is becoming a staple of organization infrastructure, as 70% of organizations have at least one application in the cloud, and 56% of organizations are still identifying IT operations as candidates for cloud hosting.1 In 2017, IDC predicted that by 2021, spending on cloud infrastructure and cloud-supported hardware, software, and services would double to more than $530 billion.2

For China, the overall market for cloud computing in 2016 was 51.49 billion RMB (China's currency), with an overall annual growth rate of 35.9% in 2016, which was significantly greater than the global average. It is expected that the China cloud computing market will continue to grow significantly over the next two years, reaching 136.6 billion RMB by 2020.3


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