Cloud computing involves computing resources – whether hardware or software – being provided as a service over a network, usually the Internet, which has made the very terms ‘Internet’ and ‘cloud’ synonymous in the minds of many. Public cloud computing comes in various different forms, such as infrastructure as a service (IaaS), platform as a service (PaaS) and software as a service (SaaS), to give just some examples. Software as a service, for example, entails users also renting application software and databases, with cloud providers responsible for the management of the infrastructure and platforms that the applications run on.
In common with a utility such as the electricity grid, cloud computing very much centres on the sharing of resources over the network to achieve coherence and economies of scale. It is very much founded on ideas of shared services and converged infrastructure. Cloud-based applications can be accessed by end users through a lightweight desktop or mobile app or even a web browser, with remotely located servers storing the user’s data. Cloud computing offers many advantages to the modern business, allowing it to get its applications up and running more quickly, reducing maintenance and improving manageability. Plus, with business demand potentially fluctuating to a greatly unpredictable degree, cloud computing solutions are also highly scalable, allowing firms to quickly adjust their resources accordingly.
Cloud computing has become increasingly relevant to 21st century enterprises, making it possible for new capabilities to be added on the fly – or even capacities increased – without the need to invest in new infrastructure, license new software or train new personnel. Although there are debates over what exactly constitutes ‘cloud computing’, it is a term that can be used to refer to any pay-per-use or subscription-based service that extends the existing capabilities of your firm’s IT department, in real time over the Internet. There is a wide range of different cloud services available depending on a company’s exact needs, from extensive applications to spam filtering and storage services, with both utility-style infrastructure providers and SaaS specialists prominent.
Cloud computing removes the need for local computers to do all of the hard work in the running of applications. Instead, the network of computers that makes up the cloud takes the burden, with the user’s computer simply needing to run the interface software of the cloud computing system – which could be as simple as a web browser. Even firms and individuals that regard themselves as complete newcomers to cloud computing are likely to have used it in some form before, with Gmail, Hotmail and Yahoo! Mail email accounts being good examples of web-based services that so many people take for granted. After all, these services don’t involve an email program being run on your actual computer, complete with associated storage. Instead, it’s on the service’s computer cloud.
Get in touch with the capable, professional and friendly team at Proxar IT Support today, for more information about the wide range of cloud computing services that we offer. We can ensure that you get to make use of the latest cloud computing technologies and developments in a way that has real value for your company, helping to reduce its operating costs, boost efficiency and ultimately, increase profits.