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How the Cloud Resonates with Business Today

Vineet Jain
Monday, October 3, 2011
Vineet Jain
In both the consumer and business worlds, there is a thunderous stampede to adopt the cloud. The cloud products and services market, is currently worth more than $16 billion, and International Data Corp. projects a $56 billion dollar industry by 2014 [1].

The cloud is in rage for good reason; users can access their data anytime and anywhere; they can share, store and backup files without worrying about size limitations. Infrastructure, storage capacity, collocations, maintenance and support are the cloud provider’s responsibility; absolving business users of a mess of expensive responsibilities. With the cloud, data is stored redundantly, at multiple locations, so disaster recovery happens within a matter of minutes—and for free—rather than in several expensive ways.

Users hit many barriers, when sharing files, including email attachment, size limitations, and difficulties of using ftp sites. The cloud takes the pain out of collaboration, by providing shared folders that can be easily managed by users, and the ability to share files as a link via email, or IM. Files are hosted in a central location, saving users the time of hunting down the most recent versions. Risk of unauthorized intrusions is minimal, as a good cloud service provider will authenticate each connection request, and encrypt communications over SSL. A provider should also have built-in permissions, to make sure files are shared, only with the right customers and companies.

Why Companies Need the Cloud?

The cloud is truly a boon for companies of all sizes. The way business is done, has changed dramatically over the past decade or so; Cloud computing meshes smoothly with the distributed nature of today’s companies. Collaboration has become real-time and cross-border, and time zones are not as important, as speed and efficiency. Many workers today, are also mobile and need access to data through their handsets or tablets. Businesses are running more productively, on leaner resources; having the ability pay for capacity as it is required, as well as to expand services using existing IT staff, is a requirement for many smaller companies. All of these factors mean, the cloud just makes sense, while the traditional file server could be on its deathbed.

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