Robin Harris just made a post about cloud storage as a service that was both insightful and right in line with some of my thinking about cloud infrastructure.
A car wash, haircut or a Google search is a service. You show up in your car, with your hair or a browser and a complete transaction occurs. A job completes.
The number of similar cloud services on the market suggests the wrong question is being answered. While there is a market for raw cloud storage – as Amazon’s S3 has shown – the real opportunity is incorporating it as a component – in a solution to a business problem.
I’m a big fan of companies who are leveraging cloud technology and economics to develop business-focused solutions that solve specific problems.
Although its certainly interesting for IT shops to be able to leverage a cloud infrastructure to scale servers on demand or access a theoretically infinite pool of storage, its more interesting and valuable to tie these cloud components together to solve business challenges like disaster recovery (for example). Cloud components are ultimately going to become a commodity so I think if you’re planning to play in this space, play higher in the stack and use the components to build a solution that will get business stakeholders (versus IT stakeholders) excited to open their wallets.
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