Why Everybody Is Talking About Cloud Computing…The Simple Truth Revealed
In computer terms, when you think of “the cloud” you might visualize a nebulous place where all information is just floating around somewhere, but where? Actually, cloud computing is just another name for the internet.
Simply put, cloud computing is accessing servers, software, stored information over the internet. But how is this more beneficial than having access on my own computer? Let’s take a look under the hood and find out!
What is Cloud Computing?
With cloud computing, all of the hardware, software and stored information are centrally located and controlled by vendors known as cloud providers.
Typically, the cloud network consists of a large array of servers that share computing resources and workload evenly across the network using low cost computing technology.
The cloud provider offers “cloud services” to businesses and individuals. The typical business model used by cloud providers is known as “pay-per-use” or “pay-as-you-go”.
All types of maintenance for both hardware and software are provided by the cloud provider. The costs to cover the maintenance are funded with the fees paid by the cloud customer.
What are the Benefits of Cloud Computing?
Besides saving time and money, businesses and individuals are looking at cloud computing to offer benefits on a much broader scope. Here are some of the more appealing ones:
1. Mobile access
Mobile applications allow information to be accessible on the cloud from smart phones and tablets.
2. Information sharing and collaboration
Cloud computing makes it easy to share documents and multimedia files. It also allows real time collaboration on documents and project artifacts, online conferences and discussion from any location.
3. Accessibility from anywhere
As long as you have a reliable internet connection, you can access the cloud from anywhere in the world. This type of flexibility is priceless in terms of work and home balance.
4. Automated updates of software and security
All software maintenance and security upgrades are done by the cloud provider. This is a huge cost and timesaver for businesses and individuals, freeing up time to perform more important tasks.
Scalability enables a business to expand without laying out any capital expenditures. It affords flexibility in the way business responds to changes.
Which Vendors Provide Cloud Computing?
When considering a cloud computing provider, the most important key factors considered are: Price, platform, features, security, reliability, and scalability.
The following are the top cloud computing providers based on these most important key factors:
1. Sun Microsystems Sun Cloud
2. IBM dynamic Infrastructure
3. Amazon EC2
4. Google App Engine
5. Microsoft Azure
6. AT&T Synaptic Hosting
7. GoGrid Cloud Computing
In summary, in spite of the drawbacks of cloud computing, the benefits remain in the forefront of this relatively new computing paradigm opening the door to great future potential.
As more players are attracted to it, the services and solutions will only get better and computing will be a walk in the cloud.