The cloud computing market continues to grow worldwide. According to a recent IDC forecast, the cloud services market in Japan is expected to experience rapid expansion in the coming years.

The forecast predicts the cloud computing market in Japan will expand at a compound annual growth rate of approximately 37.5 percent between 2009 and 2014. By 2014, IDC expects the Japanese cloud services market to be worth approximately $1.9 billion. This figure suggests that by 2014, the cloud market in Japan will be 4.9 times larger than it was in 2009.

In 2010, IDC estimates that the Japanese cloud services market grew approximately 41.9 percent over the previous year, to reach a total value of approximately $540 million.

According to Satoshi Matsumoto, research manager for IT services at IDC Japan, the self-service nature of many cloud offerings has been a key factor in the industry's growth. Matsumoto suggested vendors ought to promote the use of self-service features, in order to encourage further market growth.

Many analysts have suggested the cloud's flexibility has played a significant role in its rapid growth. In a recent interview with InformationWeek, FedEx CIO Rob Carter suggested the cloud's uniqueness lies in the fact that it is "workload agnostic."