Cloud Computing

A term we hear quite often these days is cloud computing. The personal computer revolution was, in part, a step
away from what were then the large, centralized mainframe computers on which data was stored and accessed through workstations. With a personal computer one had everything on his or her own device. Now, in a way, there is a decoupling again of the data from the device. Cloud computing is, in the simplest terms, the use of a remote location, accessible through the Internet, to store the data and applications used on a computer—instead of a harddrive on the local computer or local network of computers.

This is a growing business but one whose boundaries are still being defined, which makes it difficult to measure. It is hard to keep the image of a person trying to measure a cloud coming to mind. Consequently, one can find many different size estimates for cloud computing, the differences usually having to do with how the market is defined. What we present here is an estimate of the revenue from business cloud services—hardware and software infrastructure as well as the leasing of space—so it does not include, for example, the services provided to people wishing to back-up their family photo albums. Cloud computing services to the individual is another large business and one that may be included in other estimates of the nebulous cloud computing market.

Geographic reference: World
Year: 2010 and forecast for 2014
Market size: $22.2 Billion and (please look at our new blog site for the forecasted number)
Source: Lohr, Steve, “The Business Market Plays Cloud Computing Catch-Up,” The New York Times, April 15, page B16
Original Source: IDC

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