Microsoft is taking a lead in the cloud market with demand for its Azure services outstripping those for alternatives from Amazon and Google.
The trend started at the beginning of the year and carried through the second quarter, according to IT trends monitor Pearlfinders.
When it came to a choice between Microsoft or Google 71% of those quizzed by the market watcher chose the former with that trend likely to grow with more cloud products coming from the Seattle-based giant.
"Microsoft's recent announcement regarding the release of Office 2013 and its three new 365 packages...suggest an opportunity for Microsoft partners in the channel to leverage the perceived safety of MS packages and should focus their new business efforts on this particular solution," the latest Pearlfinders IT Index stated.
In terms of customer base the professional/business services took to the cloud in greater numbers in what Pearlfinders described as a "sea change".
"Q2 2012 appears to have been a topping point here, with a big increase in the number of companies in this sector investing in cloud," the Index added "Resellers should react to this apparent sea change by upping the resources being allocated to reaching out to this sector through marketing collateral and direct prospecting methods."