By Max Clarke

Smaller businesses across the globe will spend an estimated $11bn (£6.7bn) on cloud computing in 2011, growing at a forecast 12% per annum until 2015.

The US currently leads the way both in innovation and adoption, with 1 in 4 small business employees expected to use cloud-based tools, research from US business technology firm TechAisle reveals.

Currently businesses in the UK are more reluctant to outsource to the cloud than other economies in the eurozone, citing perceived security concerns as the chief barrier to adoption. Paradoxically, UK business owners are being dissuaded from embracing the technologies due the continued economic downturn, despite the considerable savings offered.

Emerging markets, TechAisle note, account for the highest levels of growth in the sector though currently a cloud services are used in higher portion of businesses in developed economies; and together cloud computer users number some 138 million.

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