I admire anyone who is trying to measure the impact of cloud services right now, like this story on the CIO.com site today. There's some good skepticism here, and some balance between cloud believers and those who know that enterprise IT tends to always move more slowly than headlines or press releases.
But is there any real doubt anymore than cloud services are going to become more pervasive? Sooner rather than later?
Last time I checked, enterprise IT was all about making businesses work better, which these days means empowering a mobile workforce. Whether your firm embraces mobility with zeal or with resignation, there's no putting that genie back in the bottle. Even if you require your workers to be in "the office," like Yahoo, there's still a lot of on-campus mobility, meaning that you can't ever count anymore on workers being near a cable drop or a hard-wired LAN.
The ever-increasing amount of smartphone and tablet sales seems to make arguing about mobility a moot point. Cloud, I think, is a natural extension of mobility, and if you're not using cloud now you will be soon, or else you will probably be doing something different than enterprise IT. With more vendors seeking more ways to stay relevant, you can probably bet on cloud getting more secure and more enterprise friendly just as more corporations start putting more apps and data into the cloud.
So trying to gauge cloud interest right now is like trying to guess who's going to win the World Series in April. As the final line of the story we linked to says, "The economic and agile benefits [of cloud] are just too compelling." So no matter how many people are using cloud now, more will be soon.
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