Photo: Macro Photographer on Flickr
I am not a technical person and I have not studied science since I took my 12th Grade examination way back in 1997. That makes me a little older than I would have wanted!
I read a lot of articles and read links mainly from Twitter. Cloud Computing is the IN word. It’s the IN thing. Way back in 2008, when Larry Elison blasted it off as “Gibberish”, I had a hunch this thing is going to stay. Mind you, my impression of Cloud Computing was very basic, totally based on what I had read here and there.
Well, as my indulgence on Twitter has increased, I have started reading more and more links and my understanding has got a bit clear. Now I KNOW what Cloud Computing can do and how it can help businesses with tangible saves in monetary terms also. To horror of some, I have started writing of late! Well, so here I am to share my two cents on it.
Have you gone through an article by Pascal Emmanuel Gobry on Business Insider? He takes the case of Amazon. He talks about what Amazon will look like in 20 years from now. He is absolutely fascinated by Amazon and Jeff Bezos.
Most of us here have done some purchasing on Amazon. I for one, have spent quite a few $$$ myself, with Amazon Kindle being most prized procession. No wait, probably this is my most prized procession! (Well, that’s for my daughter! 🙂 )
Well coming back to Emmanuel’s article, he makes a strong case of Amazon despite its being in loss for 8 years of so. His reasoning is, Amazon is building mass, a very very big critical mass and has been the first to spot the opportunity in cloud computing. Amazon is already sitting at $750 Million revenues for the Cloud Computing business and is soon to hit Billion Dollar. Much sooner than everyone expected.
So why is it catching up?
Before you come to why is it catching up, let us understand what exactly is Cloud Computing in one simple sentences.
“Cloud computing means that users are connecting to applications that run on a set of shared or pooled servers, rather than running on a single dedicated server” (Source: Business Insider)
Essentially, when you work in an organization, your organization has all the data stored in a physical server, if big, of its own, if medium sized like mine, then probably tied up with some big company for server space. The work that you do in that organization gets stored in that server that can be accessed via the computers or the laptops or mobiles having access to that server. If that server is down, you are doomed. Well, every company has a backup server so not exactly doomed. 😉 Well, the chances of Cloud server going down also is there but then, in cloud, you have multiple servers so the risk gets mitigated.
You still access data through cloud only which is the public internet.
Cloud Computing will catch up and is catching up because it has a very strong B2B sales case. Businesses are getting into it.
Now, imagine Google or Microsoft or Mr. Elison’s Oracle for that matter, every data point is connected to the server and only across globe, anyone can access any data. This also is over internet, you would argue. Well, this is OVER PRIVATE INTERNET. It’s their own private cloud.
Cloud computing ensures the business uptime 24/7. Data accessibility, everywhere, anytime. It makes the organizations nimble and we are talking about making elephants act and react like hares.
Now there are certain hindrances Cloud Computing will have to overcome before getting mass acceptance by businesses. Most critical of them is Data Storage. Imagine the data a Google or a Microsoft would have across. I can’t think beyond terabytes! Storing that data in cloud and making it accessible to every authorized person across the globe will involve HUGE bandwidth. Getting those bandwidth at your disposal will be a current issue.
Now, come to the second part of it.
Ever heard of Dropbox? Sugarsync? Well, you sure have heard about Apple iCloud. 🙂 These are cloud based storage services. The reason for growth of these services can be attributed to the surge of smartphone sales. Mainly Android. Please Apple boys, I mentioned Android simply for the reason that it made Smartphones with apps affordable for masses.
Yes, these phones have made these services a viable business. Started in late 2007, Dropbox, today, has over 4 million users. It is growing at a rate of 100%-150% per year.
This is Cloud, and it is here for good. It is going to take us over. Be ready. Be ready to embrace it. It won’t bite!