Back in January 2008, we posted about cloud computing as a growing trend—2 years before it really took off into the clouds. We highlighted initiatives that a handful of the largest corporations were just starting to get underway, and now these industry leaders are taking even bigger steps embracing cloud computing. For example, HP and Microsoft just announced they will jointly invest $250M to develop cloud-based systems. Cloud computing is undoubtedly one of the hottest IT initiatives today.
Since 2008, interest in “cloud computing” has increased 3,233%. CIOs are making adoption of the cloud a priority in 2010, and industry analysts predict that by 2012 cloud computing will be so pervasive that 1 out of 5 businesses will be completely in the cloud.
The advent of cloud computing has clearly made the economies of launching a business far more affordable, spurring hundreds of startups across many industries to offer a wide range of cloud-based services and solutions. In lockstep, we had an opportunity to work with some innovative tech startups that are pushing the envelope by enabling companies to be far more nimble and competitive at how they operate their business and enable their users to be more efficient. Here’s a snapshot of 3 Ignite clients that are playing a unique role in the cloud computing landscape.
Syncplicity is the leading provider of centralized file management, backup, instant synchronization and collaboration -- all in one integrated solution. The company seamlessly integrates desktop files and apps with the cloud, eliminating the problem of multiple islands of data across users' multitude of computers, devices, and web stores.
Backed by True Ventures, Syncplicity’s cloud service just announced a partnership with Google, expanding its Business Edition’s cloud-to-desktop functionality by deepening its integration with Google Docs and Google Apps. While Google Docs allows each user to store up to 1 GB each for free into Google Docs and file sizes can be up to 250 MB. Through Syncplicity, Google Docs and Apps customers can store any size document in the cloud today, and can store any amount of data with no limits in the cloud. Syncplicity is essentially bridging the desktop-cloud divide across more than 5,000 joint Syncplicity and Google customers, who are using their products together to sync nearly 1 million files each day.
Ignite showcased our client LongJump, an early player in the cloud market with a Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) offering. When LongJump launched in 2007, the company quickly moved to the forefront, introducing the industry’s first on-demand database (DaaS). LongJump is continuing to cultivate its expertise in the cloud domain and pundits are taking note. LongJump has been called the “Holy Grail in Cloud Computing” for its flexible hosting options (enterprises can choose to host the platform on-demand, in the cloud, or on-premise), and in 2009, the company earned industry validation, including:
- The only company with a PaaS offering positioned in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Application Servers
- The only PaaS provider named by Gartner a “Cool Vendor” in its Cloud Computing report
- The recipient of XChange’s XCellence award in the category of “Most Innovative Technology”
Reductive Labs is a leader in next-gen, enterprise IT automation. Its flagship offering, Puppet, is an open source software framework to automate infrastructure, which fundamentally changes how companies can configure, provision, manage and scale their IT infrastructure using software tools rather than IT staff. While both virtualization and cloud computing offer cost-effective ways to expand storage, services and processing capacities without further cash outlays for new hardware infrastructure. Puppet's automation capabilities alleviate management complexities and expenses introduced by both of these technologies. IT departments can leverage Puppet to flexibly move services back and forth from the cloud to behind the company’s firewall.
Gartner estimates that enterprise software delivered in the cloud as a service will total over $12B by 2012 and grow at 17.7% each year. It will be interesting to see how the market shakes out – with stalwarts looking to more aggressively add cloud computing strategies and initiatives to their war chests (ie: acquisitions).