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The State Of the Distributed Cloud Market

Angelina Troy, Senior Director Analyst at Gartner, presented “The Blurred Line Between Cloud, Data Center and Edge: What Is Distributed Cloud?” at the Gartner IT Infrastructure, Operations & Cloud Strategies Conference 2021, Americas. In the presentation, Angelina explained the state of the distributed cloud market, and how this technology enables customers to have local cloud capability, whilst providers handle the operations, governance and updates.

Key takeaways from Angelina’s session include:

  • “Today we tend to use cloud as an adjective to describe a service and in the context of a particular method of delivery, rather than as a noun and a technical description.”
  • “The edge is, ultimately, a location — the location where people and things connect with the networked digital world. Edge computing is a distributed computing topology that takes advantage of the edge.”
  • “Distributed cloud takes the basics of these two terms and blends them into a single concept. Distributed takes those cloud services and pushes them to other locations, while the provider maintains responsibility for operating those services.”
  • “Solutions are widely available that require the user of the service to maintain and operationalize it, but far fewer are available where the burden is undertaken by the cloud provider.”
  • “One way to interpret the goal of distributed cloud is that it delivers efficient, cloud-native services to end users wherever they happen to be.”
  • “Where you begin with public cloud services will have a huge effect on what your options are and what path you have towards distributed cloud.”


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