It’s Just Beginning—Hadoop Adoption Poised for Rapid Growth

A recent Gartner survey of 125 executives seems to indicate the Hadoop market is stalling with only 26% of respondents deploying, piloting, or experimenting with Hadoop. The real stunner was that more than half of survey respondents reported they have no current plans for Hadoop investment!  Is Hadoop losing momentum, or are we in the middle of the next big push for Hadoop adoption?


At Think Big, we don’t see the Hadoop market stalling—not at all. Instead, we see continued rapid growth, with more adoption by customers, and emphasis on production use cases and increasing programs to expand data lakes and analytic use cases. We continue to sell services to customers who are expanding their commitment to Hadoop as well as customers who haven’t used Hadoop or those who are just testing the technology.


The May 12 earnings announcement by Hortonworks likewise reflects a continued increase in new customers for Hadoop. And Shaun Connolly, Hortonworks VP of Corporate Strategy also recently noted that viewing Hadoop adoption on the classic technology adoption lifecycle shows “Hadoop (is) in the early majority of the market at the classic inflection point of its adoption curve.”


Taking into account recent results from Hortonworks and adding in what we’re seeing in the market –we believe what the Gartner Roundtable survey really shows is that the “early majority” have committed to using Hadoop and the “late majority” are still waiting for more proof of results before they invest.


Why are some companies still cautious about investing in Hadoop? We acknowledge there’s still plenty of hype in the market, and there too many companies pitching services without real capabilities. However, at Think Big we are proud of our ability to guide customers on building roadmaps to create sustainable value from Hadoop. We’re seeing customers from leading edge technology firms to mainstream companies ask us about Hadoop and we are providing them reality-based and sober guidance on what works.


Gartner’s survey also mentions there are fewer companies planning on using Hadoop than already do. However, at Think Big, our sales and forecasts don’t support this contention. We see a large number of new adopters, especially internationally and also Hadoop expansion into smaller organizations.


At Think Big, we have a model of long-term partnership and working closely with customers from big data roadmaps, to data lake assessments and creation, to data science/analytics and then managed services for daily support. While our large customers have made significant investments in Hadoop, we are also helping customers who are new to Hadoop – and these customers are a significant portion of the market in our experience.


The Gartner Hadoop survey and resulting news stories are a great example of the technology adoption life cycle. Hadoop is sliding down the “trough of disillusionment” in reaction to past hype, and now on its way to the “plateau of productivity” as organizations realize the value. The early majority is committing to Hadoop and their successes will guide the late majority in following.


A final note on the Gartner survey; keep in mind that not every company has big data. For example, most consumer packaged goods firms don’t have access to consumer behavior data. And many B2B companies aren’t yet capturing machine or sensor data that would make Hadoop interesting. For these companies existing databases and analytic systems work reasonably well and it makes sense that they would wait for additional proof before committing to Hadoop.




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