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Cloud computingTrade body the Cloud Foundry Foundation, has announced the industry’s first certification programme for platform as a service (PaaS) offerings as part of its drive to standardise the PaaS sector of cloud computing.

Cloud Foundry Certification aims to ensure all certified products use the same core Cloud Foundry software. Certification will be awarded to products and services that meet strict technical requirements outlined by the foundation’s technical governing body, it claims. Products called “Cloud Foundry” can only use that designation after meeting Cloud Foundry Certification standards. Products must re-certify every year.

The goal is to make applications work across any PaaS in a multi-vendor, multi-cloud environment. The first products to be tested for certification will be CenturyLink’s AppFog, HPE Helion Cloud Foundry, Huawei FusionStage, IBM Bluemix, Pivotal Cloud Foundry, SAP HANA Cloud Platform and Swisscom Application Cloud.

The standard is necessary because the first generation of cloud computing companies saved time and money by tying themselves to a single cloud provider such as Amazon or Google, according to Cloud Foundry CEO Sam Ramji. As the second generation of companies begins businesses want long term commitment and need an industry standard in order to regain control of their applications.

“Now that companies are regularly building new applications on their platforms they want broad standardisation across vendors,” said ESG Analyst Stephen Hendrick. Gartner research reports the PaaS market crossed the $4 billion mark this year and Wikibon Research predicts it will grow to $68.3 billion by 2026.

IDC predicts that by 2016, there will be an 11% shift In IT spending, with money being moved from traditional in-house IT delivery to the cloud and by 2017, 35% of new applications will use cloud-based as faster DevOps life cycles to streamline app production.

Cloud Foundry is collectively developed by 55 member companies in banking, telecoms, heavy industry, management consulting and large-scale computing vendors such as Pivotal, IBM, SAP, HPE, Intel, EMC, VMware, Cisco.

The platform is portable across Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, OpenStack and a range of data centre infrastructure.

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