As the Covid-19 crisis erupted in early March 2020, anecdotal evidence suggested public cloud services would play a big role in enterprise responses. The financial evidence arrived in late April (reflecting results in the first calendar quarter of 2020). The top three providers each registered strong growth despite the economic disruption of the crisis. Results were a bit muted compared to prior quarters but still strong:

  • Amazon Web Services (AWS) up 34%,
  • Microsoft Azure up 59%,
  • Google Cloud Platform (GCP) up 52%.

Faced with sudden and urgent disruption, most enterprises are turning to the big public cloud providers for help. How? Coordinate the work of employees dispersed to their homes. Automate and fix broken operating processes. Consume videoconferencing and collaboration services to further work and mental health. Our Forrester Wave assessment of the public cloud market in early 2020 revealed that AWS, Microsoft, and Google are the market leaders in strategy, service portfolios, and customers. But our 35-criteria evaluation also reveals the strengths of IBM Cloud, Oracle Cloud, Alibaba Cloud, Salesforce Customer 360 Platform, SAP Cloud Platform, and VMware Cloud.

The three leaders offer the largest portfolios of services, development tools, and/or applications. But customers will find value in each of the other vendors as well. If expanding your cloud usage, look for best fit in functionality, cost, development experiences, industry focus, geographic presence, and other factors among all of the providers. Look for special Covid-19 offers as well.

The Forrester Wave: Public Cloud Development Platforms, Q1 2020 is our assessment of the nine most important public cloud development platform vendors and their services. In this assessment, we evaluate only the platforms, tools, and services the vendors offer for custom software development. Salesforce, SAP, and VMware provide only these development services. A separate assessment evaluates both the development and infrastructure from  the six most important vendors that offer both (Alibaba, AWS, Google, IBM, Oracle, and Microsoft).

Our assessments focus on the top nine vendors in a larger landscape of cloud providers. Even as the biggest grow bigger, new entrants like Zoho and established players like Rackspace and Digital Ocean serve customers. They will continue to do so during and after the Covid-19 crisis.