Cloud computing is a technology in which data, software and hardware applications are accessed from a cloud of online resources. This technology comes in public, private and hybrid forms. Private cloud is not available to everyone who is using the Internet. The Virtual Private Network (VPN) services are provided by the companies, only to those who subscribe to them and who are connected to their network. Whereas, public cloud is available to all who access Internet. This type of computing is provided by companies such as Google, IBM, Zoho, etc. Virtualization, which is a prototype that distinguishes the computing technologies from the physical software, is a key pillar of this technology.
Can This Technology Help in Business Improvement?
Let's say you have a company and a website for your organization. In few years, the number of users of your website increases. You are successful, but with success, problems can come. Your equipment can't keep up with the demand and your service automatically slows down, which ultimately puts you into trouble. What could be the reason behind this? A few years ago, you would have put your website on computer and bought servers to set them up.
Hundreds of companies do this, which costs them a lot of money and consumes a lot of time too. This is called 'hosting'. You pay for these servers when you are using them, and you pay for them when you are not using them! By buying these servers, you hope for success in your business, but instead, you lose your customers and end up without any profit in your business. Is there any solution for this? Connect your computer to a cloud server and see what happens. You just have to pay for what you use and manage the demand by varying your utilization of the cloud resources. This lets customers, enterprises and businesses, to use the application services without any requirement for software and hardware installation.
Business Benefits from Internet
- Online availability of products and services reduces market costs.
- There is a greater reach from global market to local market.
- E-Commerce, for example - Internet marketing, reduces total cost.
- Internet is accessible not only to computers, but also other devices like mobile phones, which have Internet access.
This technology uses both the Internet and remote servers located within the Internet. It basically consists of hardware and software resources, which are made available on the Internet and they are specifically known as cloud computing services. These services could be infrastructure, platform, software and hardware. A person simply has to subscribe to the service, and log in to their desired computer application such as office automation program, data storage service, span filtering, blocking sites, etc., and get the work done. You get access to these applications and programs by monthly or annually paid subscription.
Cloud computing software are used to manage all your projects in one place as well as customer relationship management (CRM) in human resource (HR) application. A number of online office applications are also available, which include Google docs, Blist and Slide rocket, etc. This allows any user to work in these applications with any computing device with Internet connection.
There are more cloud applications such as Facebook, web-based email from Yahoo or Hotmail and Google's online spreadsheets, which are easily accessible to customers. Applications like Facebook make it user-friendly too. Salesforce.com is one of the most important and successful applications in cloud computing. What companies do is that, they log on to salesforce.com and purchase the services for automating sales team and structure.
Why is this Technology so Popular?
- Scalability: The cloud servers can be utilized or released back, according to the demand of the user.
- Instantaneous Availability: The resources are straightaway available in the cloud and it can be taken by just switching it on.
- Saving on Money: You have to pay for only what you use in the same way like how you pay for your electricity and gas consumption.
It all started with grid computing and Internet is the original computing grid. Many companies such as Google, Microsoft, Amazon, etc., are embracing this technology. Because of easy implementation, Quality of Service (QoS), remote access and low skill requirements, this technology is gaining momentum among the people. It is also called future web and no doubt, the technology has a bright future in Internet services and computing.