A question keeps popping up:
Do people need to know how the cloud works in order to use it?
My short answer is, I sure hope not! Most people and businesses already use the cloud, and most don’t even realize it.
Citrix and Wakefield Research recently completed an online “Cloud Survey” using 1,000 representative adults aged 18 and older in the US.
- 29% said “the cloud” is either the sky, an actual cloud (a “fluffy white thing”), or something related to the weather
- Only 16% said it was a computer network to store, access and share data from Internet devices
- Other responses included: toilet paper, pillow, smoke, outer space, cyberspace, mysterious network, unreliable, security, sadness, relaxed, overused, and “oh goody a hacker’s dream”
Even more interestingly, 54% of Americans claim to NEVER use cloud computing—when, in reality, 95% of those people already use the cloud!
- 65% of them bank online
- 63% shop online
- 58% use social networking sites such as Facebook or Twitter
- 45% have played online games
- 29% percent store photos online
- 22% store music or videos online, and
- 19% use online file sharing.
The “I don’t use it” phenomenon found in personal lives pops up in business, too.
A survey reported by CNBC found that over 80% of businesses currently use cloud computing. And that’s not big companies alone. More than half of micro businesses and small businesses (firms with less than 99 employees) use cloud-based business productivity applications.
Cloudability, a provider of cost-management tools for cloud services, looked at data from 3,200 customers in 80 different countries, and derived a more precise number:
As VentureBeat.com reports, that fact is somewhat surprising, considering the typical concerns expressed by high-level CIOs and chief security officers, who often say the cloud is not yet a safe place to store proprietary information.
So the gap in cloud use exists in both cases. People don’t necessarily understand what the cloud is, but 97% of individuals—and 86% of businesses from big to small—use it.
We Understand the Cloud So You Don’t Have To
With all this cloud-based Internet use exploding, we saw the need at OrbitScripts to use the cloud more than ever for our ad serving systems.
It’s a circular, network effect. The more people who use the cloud, the more it increases the load on ad systems, which means we need more power from the cloud to serve the cloud.
Before the invention of these cloud-computing systems, we used dedicated servers and infrastructure expansion to meet the storage and capacity loads of our ad servers. It was expensive, and connecting and setting up all those servers took a considerable amount of time!
We had to modernize and adapt our software to run on cloud systems to allow more flexible and scalable network infrastructure. And we’re happy to give that power to our customers going forward.
The Real Definition of The Cloud
The cloud is a computing system you don’t have to maintain, and it comes with high reliability, high security, and fast speeds of deployment whenever and wherever you need it.
It’s a system of distributed power with much less risk.
So tell me:
When did you realize the cloud meant new possibilities?
Was it Facebook or something in your personal life?
And have you tried to implement those new possibilities in your business, too?
One thing’s for sure: It’s time for everyone to think about the cloud as more than a “fluffy white thing”…and yet you don’t have to know much more than that to benefit and use it.