A few years ago, techie individuals had the only interest in cloud computing and cloud-based services. However, it had little use for business at large. That has all changed, and rapidly. No longer are enterprises in a cloud first mentality. Rather, business is rapidly moving towards a cloud only mentality.
Unfortunately, most people outside IT understand very little about cloud computing and cloud-based services.
Cloud computing refers to shared pools of computer systems, operated and managed by a third party. Rather than having a complex, heavy IT infrastructure maintained on internal servers and networks, cloud computing allows an enterprise to avoid upfront and maintenance IT expenses.
To put it simply, an enterprise pays another company to use their IT resources.
Various cloud-based services
While cloud computing is broad regarding the use of internet to reduce and share expenses for infrastructure, services within the cloud are differentiated based on line and deployment. Most recognizable as *-As-A-Service (*aaS), enterprises can purchase different cloud computing based on their needs.
One of the most recognizable is Software-as-a-Service (Saas), though this term has become diluted by enterprises jumping on the marketing bandwagon. SaaS is a when an enterprise uses applications hosted on another company’s infrastructure and platform. This eliminates the need to install and run an application on an user’s own system, simplifying maintenance and support.
Web-hosted email is a commonly seen SaaS.
People often hear of SaaS, as marketing has picked up the jargon and assigned it to pop jargon. However, businesses can choose more than SaaS. Also offered are Platforms-as-a-Service, Mobile “backend”-as-a-Service, and serverless computing, in which virtual networks operate on all server requests from the user.
As cloud-based services expand to cover cloud only mentality, Desktops-as-a-Service is the newest offering in the cloud computing world. This takes away all need for updates and security maintenance, as all computers access a virtual computer for the desktop.
In fact, DaaS can give IT ultimate control over what enterprise computers, no longer unable to access items saved directly on the desktop by employees.
Security and control
So, what is the overall driving desire behind cloud computing? After all, a third party stores an enterprise's company data. Storage that sometimes occurs on shared networks. While it would seem cloud computing and cloud-based services remove control from IT, the systems provide IT more control.
One example is IBM’s MaaS360 system. Built as a Saas, IBM’s cloud computing EMM provides control over all BYOD and enterprise issued devices. Suddenly a company can secure and wipe phones, tablets, and laptops from anywhere. Including devices that are employee owned but company used.
Also included in this is Amazon’s subsidiary Amazon Web Services (AWS). Maas360 focuses on EMM of mobile devices. AWS offers 90 services that cover all aspects of IT infrastructure including desktops, data storage, security, and management. Why would an enterprise give what seems like so much control to Amazon?
Because AWS provides subscribers almost immediate access to large scale computing capacity without the cost and time of building out a server farm.
Does it really matter?
Small businesses can function on the more self-reliant physical servers located in their offices. However, more businesses are realizing the benefit of utilizing the internet for IT infrastructure. Not only do providers store data while managing costs efficiently, but they offer unsurpassed security functions. Providers quickly push out updates without bogging down in understaffed IT departments, and security protocols are in line with the most recent information.
Ultimately, the best option for businesses looking to scale without upfront IT costs is cloud computing and cloud-based services. Also, most services are pay-per-use, preventing overages as subscriptions adjust based on user count.
At the end of the day, cloud-based services offer the best security options available. Not only is data storage secure, but using SaaS enterprise mobility management systems like MaaS360 secure all devices accessing a system.
For more information on how MobileWare maximizes cloud-based services and cloud computing for their clients, click here.