US and China will continue to lead for data centre location, analyst notes

James has more than a decade of experience as a tech journalist, writer and editor, and served as Editor in Chief of TechForge Media between 2017 and 2021. James was named as one of the top 20 UK technology influencers by Tyto, and has also been cited by Onalytica, Feedspot and Zsah as an influential cloud computing writer.


A note from Synergy Research has shed light on the most popular data centre geographies, with the US and China coming out on top.

Not surprisingly, the US is the most popular location for cloud and internet data centres in Q215. After analysing the data centre footprint of 13 of the world’s major cloud and internet service firms, 44% of data centres were in the US. China (10%) was in clear second place, ahead of Australia, the UK, Japan, and Singapore (all 5%), with Germany and the Netherlands (4%) behind.

Synergy argues the results reflect two trends; the dominance of the US market, and the unique proposition of China’s ecosystem. Companies who have already built data centres in China include Amazon, IBM and Microsoft – although in December it was reported that cloud computing providers in the Asian country were to be tested for their ‘trustworthiness’, potentially meaning bad news for foreign CSPs.

The research also noted the importance of traditional data centre hubs, such as Singapore, Hong Kong, the Netherlands, and Ireland, but customer demand dictating reduced latency and greater data sovereignty means vendors are moving closer to home. IBM, as an example, launched its first Italian cloud data centre in Cornaredo, a municipality in Milan, in June this year, while a data centre in Frankfurt, opened its doors in January.

“While the hyperscale cloud operators continue to invest huge amounts in their data centre footprints and to expand their geographic scope, there is no doubt that the US and China will continue to be the lead countries for locating major data centres,” said John Dinsdale, a Synergy chief analyst.

The 13 companies analysed now have almost 150 major data centre sites between them, Synergy added.

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