There was a time in the not so distant past when people could not have even dreamt of such a thing as cloud-based application development services. Only with recent technologies in the last 5 to 8 years have these kinds of possibilities become a reality.
In order to make cloud-computing work you need fast Internet connections and hardware that is powerful enough to run the software on the server end and display it to the end user in good way. This technology just simply wasn’t around that long ago. For instance, the first computer I have had a 5-gigabit hard drive on it and the sticker that came on the desktop tower read “Never Obsolete.” If that is not an incredible testament to how far the world of computing, I don’t know what is.
Here’s another example. Steve Wozniak, cofounder of Apple Computers, said that when he and Steve Jobs started building their first computers, the idea that these machines could hold a single song let alone tens of thousands of songs never even entered their minds. But how could it? The operating system on some of these early computers was less than 10 kilobytes.
But now we are seeing an entirely different world emerge. As people stocked up on large amounts of hard drives and big towers to house all of their files in the mid 2000s, now people are ditching all of that equipment and opting to store everything on the cloud. It’s easy, it’s cheap, and it’s out of their way.
Now there are certain companies in the marketplace that have really taken a hold of this strategy and tailored many of their services to it and others have not. Microsoft is, again, another example of a company that is desperately trying to find its way into the marketplace of cloud-computer application services. Consider one of their best all-time selling products, Microsoft Office. This program is now available in any number of avenues for free, whether to download on your hard drive or to use over the cloud.
Companies are now producing entire laptop machines with this new trend in mind. If you can house all of your programs and files on an external source, your laptop does not need much power at all to run its internal operating system. The Microsoft Surface has been making steady progress on this front as well as a few other tablet/laptop providers.
The key thing that needs to be thought of, from a market perspective, is how to align your own company with this new trend. It’s always best to be ahead of the curve and beat the mad rush to the finish line.
Ask yourself, how can you take advantage of cloud-based applications to seize an increased market share or gain a leg up on your competition? Should you develop a smart-phone app? This depends largely on your demographic audience, so only you can truly answer this question. But these are where the world of business and design is going. It’s best to get on the train now.