1. Cloud is nothing new: as a matter of fact there is a suggested one billion users using cloud-based applications such as Gmail, Hotmail & Yahoo without being completely aware of it!
2. Social Media Platforms: It would be redundant to remind ourselves that all our social media pictures, music and favorites are now saved on the cloud! Think of services such as Flickr or Instagram to name just two!
3. Free private cloud “hard disk” space for everyone, which should be very dear to some of my German friends: Google Docs: 1GB for non Google documents; ITunes’ ICloud: 2GB; Dropbox: 2GB; Box: 5GB formerly Box.net and its handy Microsoft Office extension allowing user to save directly to the cloud; 4shared: 10GB; Microsoft’s Sky Drive: 25GB; Adrive: 50GB a mega vault recommended for bulk pictures , sound and video files.
4. Giant PC software manufacturer Microsoft wanting to compete with Google’s array of free online applications and finally moving up its fabulous Office Suite to the cloud: Office365, a secure anywhere access to professional email, shared calendars, IM, video conferencing and document collaboration.
5. PC manufacturer Dell reinventing itself and is on its way to becoming a Cloud Company having made lots of acquisitions in the last months and weeks: Dell already acquired Make Technologies (Software solution relieving organization from legacy application and platforms), Wyse giving them an entry into thin computing and mobile technology, Sonicwall a leader in advanced network security and data protection, Clerity a provider of mainframe migration, modernization and optimization solutions.
6. CRM Cloud Company Salesforce has also been shopping lately: already acquired Social Media marketers’ well known Radiant6 and recently Heroku a cloud application platform and Ripple a telecommunication client providing chat and conference services throughout the US and obviously moving from traditional CRM to Social CRM aka SCRM.
7. Cloud giant Amazon with its Amazon Cloud Drive: 5GB of free private online storage or AWS (Amazon’s Web Services) providing professional users with free cloud storage space thus assisting them to access data at any time from everywhere and on every imaginable platforms or device!
8. Technology Commercialization: the challenge “par excellence” for IT leaders struggling to integrate BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) to the existing IT structure! If companies want to attract savvy workers, management will have to integrate the smart-phones and tablets to 21st century E-Portfolio workforce!
“When the way that applications are designed, delivered and consumed by users changes, it has a dramatic impact on all other aspects of the market. These changes will have a profound impact on how applications are written and managed in corporate environments. They also raise the prospect of greater cross-platform portability as small user experience (UX) apps are used to adjust a server- or cloud-resident application to the unique characteristics of a specific device or scenario. One application can now be exposed in multiple ways and used in varying situations by the user.”
10. Mobile Technology: unimaginable to plan a website which is not Multiplatform ready! Computer patrons want to access their data everywhere and at anytime and from all sort of device! The Cisco report also predicts that:
“Smartphone traffic will grow by a factor of 50 between now and 2016. a) The network traffic from tablets alone will grow more than 62 times between now and 2016. b) Mobile video will take up 71 percent of 2016 mobile data traffic. c) Service providers will increasingly look to offload mobile Internet traffic to fixed or Wi/Fi networks. d) There will be 5 billion tablet devices by 2016. Each mobile user will consume more than a gigabyte of mobile data each month in 2016, compared to .5 percent who did so in 2011.”
12. Ambient Social Networking: one of Austin’s 2012 SXSW buzz words! Ambient Social Networking instead of connecting people to places such as Foursquare connects people to people in real time including startups such as Catherine Fake’s Pinwheel and upcoming companies Highlight, Sonar, Glancee, Gindr , Banjo or Discover Circle!
More and more IaaS, PaaS and consequently SaaS will have to be included into IT portfolios in order for companies to fully harness social marketing and keep up with real time consumer conversation. Social networking within companies itself has become a priority for astute entrepreneurs searching for social enterprising tools such as Yammer and exploit the power and wealth of knowledge within their own group, pro actively addressing the SILO mentality, which stifles mobility, creativity and innovation!
When are you moving to the cloud? What is your company undertaking this year to make things more “cloudy”? Let me know and let’s update these points together because as the cloud progresses so will this list!
Constructive IT times to you with partly sunny but cloudy days ahead and wishing you a wonderful Passover Season!