What’s Up With The Cloud?


We asked local Cloud Computing Expert Andy Wiggins, President of Integrated Technology Corporate Solutions what’s up with the cloud:

  1. Everyone thinks they know what cloud computing is, but what do business owners really need to know about it?

While everyone has heard about the Cloud mostly from media mentions, there are three different forms of the Cloud and businesses need to understand those various forms. There is the public cloud, private cloud and hybrid cloud.

The public cloud is what we are all familiar with; the Amazon Web Services and Microsoft Azure’s of the world. In this type of environment, a business is typically renting a portion of a server each month and can easily scale up or down as needed. Think public storage type of facility where one can rent more storage or cut back on their needs easily.

The private cloud is where a company places its own equipment in a data center facility that has multiple points of redundancy such as electrical connectivity and internet connectivity like the public cloud.

There is also the hybrid cloud environment. The hybrid cloud is a combination of uses which includes the public cloud, private cloud and sometimes on-premise equipment with applications and services orchestrating between the platforms.

Businesses should determine which solution is the right one for them and this depends on several factors such as what type of data the business generates, the type of proprietary applications the business utilizes, and the costs associated with each solution.

  1. Large companies can afford to be a part of the Public Cloud, what should small and mid-size companies consider?

Any sized company can consider the public cloud but in general it can be costly. The public cloud works on an ala carte basis and costs can add up quickly. Smaller businesses can consider the private or hybrid cloud solutions where they are either utilizing their own equipment and just “renting” the space in a data center or only placing certain data and applications into the cloud. These can be applications such as email and CRM solutions.

  1. The perception is switching to cloud is so time consuming, why is it worth the effort of switching over?

Depending on the size of the business and the amount of data it has, it can become a major project. There are also other aspects to consider like internet connectivity speed, number of users, amount of data, etc. However, there are companies that make the transition easy and seamless. Utilizing the private cloud or hybrid cloud is less time consuming and depending on the needs of the business, can offer the same benefits as putting all aspects of its network into the public cloud.

  1. Will the cloud lower IT cost?

The cloud may decrease the IT costs of an organization by allowing it to decrease capital spending on physical equipment that becomes outdated and obsolete over time. Additionally, with the cloud, a business only purchases the level of performance (computing power, data storage, etc.,) that is needs today and can easily scale up or down as its needs change. Finally, the business can decrease costs by purchasing software in a subscription format rather than having to purchase the licensing upfront and pay for renewals and maintenance.

  1. With Hurricane Season approaching once again, why does cloud computing make sense for local businesses?

The cloud makes sense for any business that needs to continue operating in the event of a hurricane or any disaster. Even if the business is down because it does not have electrical power to operate equipment or has sustained physical damage to its office, the company’s data is secure in the cloud. Employees not in the affected area can continue to work and the IT network continues to function. Overall downtime is limited because once power returns, employees can start working and those unaffected by the storm or disaster, would be able to work continuously.

For more information visit www.itcscorporate.com.