The concept is this. Clouds allow all users, large and small, to use shared software and send and store information. Any web based email and those like Gmail, Hotmail, and Yahoo is a clear example of cloud computing. You access stored information via the web.
This week Apple opened up its latest treasure chest and gave developers access to iCloud. iCloud is Apple’s foray into cloud computing and one that will make a lot of noise in the weeks and months to come.
iCloud will transform access to your iTunes, stored documents, and client side programs to web based computing. In the bigger picture I think cloud computing is last piece needed to cut the cord from desktop computers. When this happens those that have adopted tablets and smartphones will be exposed to a new world of access to online storage and programs.
Cloud computing isn’t new to the corporate world. IT departments use forms of cloud computing to share information across vast networks. Big players like Microsoft, Unisys, IBM and AT&T have been cloud hosting to corporations for years. The difference here is that cloud computing will soon be open to everyone with web access.
Each day more and more apps are developed to run on mobile devices. Unfortunately there is a downside. Just like a computer, your smartphone or tablet ultimately runs out of space and the device speed is noticeably slower. Cloud technology solves that issue, storing all of your programs and files securely somewhere on a server far, far away. To the naked eye, there is no difference other than being able to use programs from any desktop or mobile device from anywhere in the world.
Given access to others on your cloud, or to specific files, ends the hassle of sending them back and forth. Just text or email a link and you are there.
Clouds will increase the capacity and capabilities in real-time without having to sink big bucks into new software, computers, training or license fees. The workload is shifted from your personal computer to online.
There will be some obvious uses in store for digital journalists with iCloud. iCloud will allow you to take a photo or shoot video on yoursmartphone or iPad, and it automatically sends it to your cloud. Snap… Send.. Snap… Send… Photos are then accessible for posting online or on-air instantly.
This is the big difference between current online storage, like Dropbox for instance. Dropbox and others, is simply a virtual thumb drive. Real time synching of photos, videos, files, contacts and calendars to all of your devices doesn’t occur.
I think with cloud computing will come the obvious “pay-to-play” price structure. Instead of buying apps, you will purchase online access to word processing, and spreadsheets. Apps will ultimately become desktop links, with the user being to pick and choose from available online programs, at much reduced rate.
Apple has already released a price structure for its online iCloud service. While low end storage is free, 10GB will cost $20 per year, 20GB – $40 and 50GB – $100. You can bet as developers kick the tires on the new service, a flood of online programs will be available for purchase.
Stay tuned, this is going to get interesting.
This entry was posted on Wednesday, August 3rd, 2011 at 10:15 am and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.