If you are still looking for tangible benefits of such an intangible concept: cloud computing Jean-Philippe Courtois, president of Microsoft International presented them in plain words at the CeBit trade show in Hannover, Germany.
For those unfamiliar to the term, Mr Courtois defines cloud computing as the sharing of ”computing power stored in large, remote data centers, rather than relying on the power of a local PC or server”.
From the micro- economic point of view cloud computing helps small and medium businesses (Europe’s main economic engine) boost their productivity, as companies, relieved of the responsibility to administer their own IT can focus on their core business and drive their funds accordingly. Besides this, the costs associated with an IT infrastructure are eliminated ( we’ve already addressed this issue a while ago when referring to our ”Powered by Windows Azure Mark”, see details here). The scaleability and reliability of these systems represent a tremendous gain for the digital signage sector and its customers (who can store a massive amount of data safely without incurring any extra- expenses for that).
From a macro- perspective cloud computing enhances national competitiveness. A Microsoft study shows that in Ireland investments in cloud computing could lead to the creation of 19,600 jobs and the set up of 2,200 non-IT SMEs (small and medium enterprises). It was shown that ”the cloud” could also improve the quality of public services. According to the Centre of Economics and Business Research cloud computing is expected to enhance the productivity of top economies by €763 billion during the next 5 years.
The speech ends on a futuristic note with Mr. Courtois expressing his vision of a world in which the cloud computing services, continuously available to any business or individual, will help ” achieve the kinds of things we haven’t even dared to dream about today”.
If we’ve incited your curiosity about this new phenomenon you can read more on the topic or download the speech from here.
Or you can quickly see what Windows Azure is about by watching the video below: