A web service that could be provided by your company with your own servers that’s moved to a service handled by another.
A great example goes all the way back to having your own server to host your website. Now you likely pay a company a monthly service fee to host the website on their server for you. Other vital business services such as email, that once required a local server connected in your office, for years have been provided by external companies like Google’s Gmail and Yahoo.com. Even Customer Relationship Management software can now be hosted as a service, like the very popular Salesforce.com. Amazon.com hosts virtual servers for small, medium and large customers. Foursquare, Netflix and other large companies use the Amazon datacenter services but Amazon also hosts thousands of other smaller companies websites and application services as well.
Part of what I love doing for small- and medium-sized businesses is showing them how technology can help them. Google Apps is one of those great technologies and it is a great example of Cloud. If you have a small business and you send emails with an @yahoo.com, @gmail.com or other free email service rather than @yourcompanyname.com, you are missing an opportunity to put your company name in front of your customer. For $50 per user per year your business can share and collaborate on docs, calendars, participate in video chats, instant message and have a dedicated website and email using your own .com address. You can learn more about the service at www.google.com/apps
The Cloud is only going to grow and more services will be provided as new technologies come about and new ways to deliver them are needed. This is all good for us, the consumer, because we can benefit from the technological cost of scale. The more people Google and Amazon can squeeze into a delivery model based on the technology used, the cheaper the per-user cost will become. That is good for all of us. Rumors are already circulating that the multimillion-dollar datacenter in North Carolina Apple just built may be used as a “digital locker” for all your iTunes data. This way of delivering technology is only getting better since many of us have ever-increasing speeds of internet delivery at our homes and businesses. I can’t wait to see what next big thing we get from the Cloud.
Matt Chapman, of Avalon Park, is an iPhone/iPad developer and owner of Origin Technologies, www.origintech.net. Email him at email@example.com.
This article comes to Freeline Media Orlando courtesy of The East Orlando Sun.
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