Application container market to hit $2.7B by 2020, report says


The application container market is on the verge of taking off, with one analyst firm predicting it will grow to $2.7 billion by 2020.

If that happens, it would see the market size more than quadruple in size from $762 million in 2016, representing a compound annual growth rate of 40 percent, according to 451 Research LLC’s Cloud-Enabling Technologies Market Monitor report published Tuesday.

Meanwhile, the entire Cloud-Enabling Technologies market, which encompasses containers, virtualization, Platform-as-a-Service and other automation and management software, will explode from $23.1 billion in 2017 to $39.6 billion by the end of 2020. That would amount to a compound growth rate of 15 percent.

451 Research says that if its forecast is correct, the application container market would have an even broader impact than that of OpenStack, the popular open-source cloud computing platform that has seen massive adoption among telecommunications firms and other enterprises in the past few years. The research firm valued the OpenStack market at $1.8 billion in 2016 and expects it to grow to $5.8 billion by the end of 2020.

The researchers say that the enterprise adoption and market maturity of containers appears to be happening much more quickly than OpenStack and other trends such as DevOps. It cites the rapidly increasing number of companies offering support and services around the technology as evidence of this, saying it now tracks 125 application container vendors and expects many more to emerge in the years to come. In contrast, there are just 90 vendors participating in the OpenStack ecosystem today, 451 Research said in a release.

“Two things stand out from our market sizing and research on containers,” said Greg Zwakman, vice president for market and competitive intelligence at 451 Research. “The breadth and diversity of vendors basing their offerings on containers or integrating and partnering to better support containers in their products, and the speed at which the container software and market are maturing based on production, use and revenue growth.”

451 Research cites its Voice of the Enterprise SDI Workloads and Key Projects study from last year as further evidence of application container’s stunning growth. That study, published in August 2016, found that of the 25 percent of enterprises it surveyed that were already using containers, 34 percent were already at the broad implementation of production applications stage and 28 percent had begun full implementation of production.

The research firm also predicts consolidation in the application container market, citing Apprenda Inc.’s acquisition of Kubernetes support firm Kismatic Inc. and Cisco Systems Inc.’s purchase of Docker Swarm supporter ContainerX Inc. as evidence this has already begun.