Cloud computing is part of the next stage in the Internet’s evolution. This technology comprises an infrastructure with multiple clients able to share a common technology platform that provides reliable computing services anytime as needed, from multiple devices.
Research analysts show that many SMBs are adopting cloud computing to deliver aspects of computing as a service over the Internet. It has attracted the attention of companies like Amazon and Google, for example, which have already moved to the cloud.
There are several companies, in fact, that have decided on opting for the cloud-based infrastructure to store, process, distribute and analyse large amounts of data, or to increase user mobility and improve the availability of services.
By means of the cloud, services are accessed on demand. From the user’s point of view, services are scalable and flexible. They are able to streamline operations, reduce/consolidate their IT arrangement on-site and do much more.
According to a Security Week report last month, organizations are making the move (or are considering it) as it can provide them benefits in both efficiency and costs to run critical business applications.
As per a survey taken by 300 IT professionals at the InfoSecurity Europe conference earlier this year, which was created by Voltage Security (a data protection provider that has a data-centric approach to protect Big Data and secure it before it moves into the Cloud), some organizations find themselves unable to secure data across big data initiatives; this has kept them from adopting cloud or big data technology thus far.
Nonetheless, emerging big data trends has driven cloud adoption. And it will likely continue to rise this year and onward, as more businesses are investing in the cloud than in the past, as revealed by the 2013 Future of Cloud Computing Survey by North Bridge Venture Partners, in conjunction with GigaOM Research.
Many have opted to move their existing infrastructure to a cloud to meet their business demands (to access cloud-based applications or a share pooled of resources) or opted for hosted services (IaaS, PaaS and SaaS are examples of the cloud computing service models).
Those opting for the services of a provider will be pleased to know that many are dedicated to making sure the service provided is safe, secure and available 24/7. These providers strive to take care of most issues, and do all updates themselves at their end. All a business needs to worry about is paying the monthly subscription to the provider or elect to pay for the service usage in a pay-as-you-go model. This may be an apt option for those that do not want the burden of having to buy or license new software and maintain equipment. However, it may not suit everybody as it means, normally, relinquishing some control over sensitive data.
Regardless of the weaknesses that have been mentioned, cloud services can extends businesses’ existing capabilities and make them more efficient. It can potentially satisfy every conceivable requirement for an enterprise needing to “boost performance, productivity and interaction with customers, while avoiding the complexities and expenses of managing in-house IT hardware,” as pointed out by The Royal Gazette, Bermuda’s news organization, online in an article Sept. 11.
As far as its benefits, cloud computing has many but here are five:
Offering scalability. When necessary, businesses can easily upscale or downscale to meet their changing requirements.
Providing flexibility. End-users are able to run, use and share documents and other files over the Internet, both in and out of the workplace.
Streamlining processes. One can get more work done in less time with less effort.
Improving accessibility. Provide on-demand simple access anytime, anywhere, locally and globally.
Promising service agility while saving on the company IT costs. Has a significant impact on a business return on investment (ROI).
These are all worthy benefits and reasons why cloud computing continues to evolve. Only time will tell if they will be sufficient to persuade more small-medium businesses (SMBs) to use it despite the risks involved.
Source: Cloud Communications