A new report from Verizon, based on trends among its customers across multiple industries, finds significant acceleration of cloud computing services between January 2012 and June 2013.

With business-critical applications now shifting to the cloud, use of cloud-based storage among its clients has increased by 90 percent with cloud-based memory up 100 percent, according to the telecommunications firm. Deployments of Virtual Machines, which Verizon defines as software applications that run programs like a traditional computer, are up 35 percent.

“Organizations are now using the cloud for more than development and testing,” according to the report. “They’re running external-facing and critical business applications in the cloud--production applications now account for 60 percent of cloud usage.” Consequently, the average monthly spend for an enterprise on cloud services increased 45 percent during the 18-month report period.

Sixty percent of customers’ cloud applications are Web-based and Internet-facing. Electronic commerce and email were the early applications to be cloud-enabled, but back-office applications such as manufacturing and resource planning now account for 23 percent of cloud use.

Some companies now are adopting a hybrid strategy, more popular among entities subject to strict regulatory policies, where they are moving to the cloud but keeping some data behind the corporate firewall. And enterprises increasingly are using application programming interfaces to automate cloud-based processes.

The eight-page report is available here.

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