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Nearly 75 percent of UK firms to use cloud computing by 2013

The adoption of cloud services is a trend seen around the world, especially in the U.K., where businesses are doing anything in their power to enable growth in an otherwise difficult economy. A new study by the Cloud Industry Forum found that cloud deployments have accelerated during the last nine months in the U.K., with first-time users growing 27 percent.

Research revealed that there is no particular industry adopting cloud computing technologies significantly faster than any others, nor is there a specific application that is being used more often. In other words, all organizations are adopting various types of cloud services. In fact, the CIF forecast found that nearly 75 percent of U.K. businesses will be using at least one cloud-based solution by the end of 2013.

"The market is clearly moving out of a nascent state into mainstream adoption and with it the challenges are changing from clarity and comfort that the cloud is viable as an IT delivery model into achieving a strategic goal of integrating cloud within the wider IT agenda and determining an effective and efficient path for more widely embracing cloud services without diminishing efficiency, control or governance," said Andy Burton, chair of CIF.

UK cloud computing market
The survey found that 61 percent of respondents are currently using the cloud, up from 48 percent 18 months ago, with more than three-quarters of these organizations planning to expand their use of the cloud in the next 12 months.

Although the reasons behind deploying the technology vary between respondents, the ability to reduce costs was the No. 1 driver, followed closely by enhancing operational flexibility, CIF reported.

A separate study by Everest Group highlighted the cloud's ability to reduce costs, as 64 percent of survey respondents said cloud services met or exceeded their perception of minimizing IT expenses.

CIF found these benefits were appealing even to companies that had not yet adopted the cloud. The study found that nearly a quarter of the 39 percent of respondents who were not using the cloud said they were planning on hosting cloud services next year.

As the advantages of using the cloud become more widely known throughout the private sector, decision-makers will likely feel more inclined to leverage the technology, allowing them to potentially gain a competitive advantage in an otherwise turbulent economy.

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