While many hear the term ‘the cloud’ and think of storage or hosting, cloud technology is an exciting, robust market that is only just beginning, and has real long-range benefit to both consumers and businesses. The past year has seen a boom in startups and ideas in cloud-based tools and services. Much of this has centered around business needs. It has spanned everything from payroll to billing and bookkeeping, sales and marketing department functions, to applications that track customer behavior. For consumers, online education that moves beyond the traditional courses is increasing. Web-based fitness instruction, dance lessons, cooking and more are all being offered with growing participation. Communications is an equally powerful area — I am EVP of Innovation at RingCentral, which provides cloud-based phone systems. It is a very exciting and emerging category in cloud-based technology, and one that will continue to grow in the years ahead.
While many of the deals and movement has been on the business-side, we have only just begun to see the potential for cloud-based applications. Watch for emerging trends in utility management, cross device tools and services, fun and games for kids and many, many new ideas.
I was part of a keynote at the Cloud Expo event this past week. The event brings together industry executives and technology vendors from across the market. It’s an excellent resource for anyone interested in gaining insight and seeing the latest innovations in cloud technology. Thank you to Cloud Expo for having me be part of the event this year.
Being in the cloud computing industry, and the broader tech market, it is interesting to see moves in the business. IBM is said to be teaming up with a China-based ISP to offer cloud business services. The news is compelling in that it demonstrates the continued value of business offerings in could computing, and the potential for IBM to take a larger position in the industry. The company certainly isn’t among the first to look beyond the U.S. for opportunity and scale. Very exciting!
There was an exciting article this past month that suggested Rackspace may be in acquisition talks. Rackspace played a significant role in bringing cloud server architecture to the web 2.0 market. It’s excellent to see it attract this type of interest. The article joins others this past year of cloud-based technologies and companies gaining market share, acquisitions and other successes. Great to see the continued value in the cloud market!
I shared insight about cloud-based phone system transition on CPA Practice Advisor this past week. You can read the article here.