What Is Cloud Computing?
For those who aren’t 100% sure what the cloud actually is it’s probably best we clear that up.
Cloud computing in its simplest form is services delivered to the end user over the internet. Users are usually billed on a pay as you go basis for the privilege of using the software on demand.
There’s no up-front cost, so you never actually own it and the storage, applications, or platforms you use are not physically stored on your premises. They do exist physically on servers owned or used by the vendor.
Recent figures show that worldwide spending on public cloud services has increased year on year and currently sits at around $480 billion. Whether at work or at home, most of us are using some form of cloud-based software.
The most popular form of cloud computing is SaaS or Software as a Service. This is where you use a piece of software or application that is distributed via the internet. It’s not installed on your PC and is usually accessed through a web browser. Gmail, Canva, Adobe Creative Cloud, Salesforce, Buffer, Microsoft 365, you name it. All SaaS.
Other cloud services include IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service) and PaaS (Platform as a Service). IaaS is the infrastructure that so much of what we do is built on. That’s servers, storage, and operating systems. PaaS vendors, on the other hand, provide development frameworks that allow developers to build applications themselves.
Increasingly this is the way we do things. It’s certainly a preferable business model for many vendors but it does also present a lot of benefits to the end user, which we’ll get into below.