451 Research Shows Cloud Costs Falling Slowly

The latest 451 Research Cloud Price Index finds that on-demand cloud pricing has fallen only slightly at 2.25% since October 2014. Using 451 Research’s cloud pricing model, representing a typical multi-service on-demand application, the cost is now $1.68 per hour. In October 2014, the cost for the equivalent basket of cloud services was $1.72. 

451-researchAlthough the Cloud Price Index shows compute pricing has fallen by 4% and bandwidth has come down 3%, service providers are enjoying increased revenue and profits from other services such as management, PaaS, data and storage pricing, which have remained static over the same period.

The cloud costs for those enterprises that negotiate and commit has dropped 12%, according to the 451 Research Cloud Price Index.

“If you believe the hype, public cloud providers are in a cutthroat price war and ‘race to the bottom,’ where margins are being slashed, and profitability is at risk,” said Dr. Owen Rogers, senior analyst at 451 Research’s Digital Economics unit. “The reality is there is no cloud price war. There are battles being fought over certain cloud services, particularly compute, where providers are seeking publicity and market share in return for price cuts. But cloud providers are more than just compute – considering 50% of our typical Web application’s costs relate to cloud databases, it’s easy to see how sales of more value-adding services can offset declining margins on basic services.”

“Cloud has no bottom price,” added Rogers. “Even if infrastructure is eventually given away for free, as long as the provider sells other services, which offset this loss, then it can still be a profitable business.” 

451 Research collects quotes from providers including AWS, CenturyLink, Colt, Google, Microsoft, Rackspace, Swisscom, Verizon and Windstream, representing 70% of today’s cloud market.