Firstly it’s worth mentioning that you probably are already using cloud computing in one form or another. Do you use Gmail, Hotmail or Yahoo! Mail? If the answer is yes to any of those then you’re already using cloud computing. Instead of storing your emails on your computer’s hard drive, you access them on each service by remotely logging in. All of your emails are stored on the cloud servers of the respective services.
Comparing regular computing to cloud computing is sort of like comparing driving a car to driving a car remotely, your computer is the controller and the cloud performs all the functions you request of it.
As you see today with email and other things it’s common for data to be stored on cloud servers. Many other things that were only found on your computer’s hard drive in the past are now moving to cloud computing, meaning less work for your computer and more secure data. Because the data is stored on multiple servers located in a different location to the user, if their computer crashes or is damaged they won’t lose anything.
Google Docs (Google Drive) is a perfect example of this, as it marks the move of word processing from the local computer to the cloud. Google Docs is constantly saving what you write in the cloud, so everything you write will remain when you return if the power suddenly goes out.
Cloud computing also gives businesses a larger range of capabilities than before. Because the computer at the user’s end only needs to connect to the internet it removes the need for businesses to set up large networks between their computers. Many businesses, including Google and Amazon, use the cloud to store most of their IT resources. Cloud computing removes many of the constraints of localized computing, such as time, storage space, power, and cost.
Software, infrastructure and storage are all delivered over the internet, making internet connection speeds more important than the speed of the hardware you’re using. What kind of changes can we expect? As a result of the move towards cloud computing, we’re likely to see devices that access the internet decrease in price dramatically. This will mostly be due to the fact that there will no longer be the need for the same hardware, as everything will be sent to and from each device via the cloud.