This is a guest post from Blake Sanders.

Cloud computing allows companies to save money by hosting applications in a virtual “cloud” so that they can be accessed from anywhere. When this technology is coupled with unlimited mobile broadband access, business and employees are able to work seamlessly from almost any location without purchasing additional equipment. By hosting applications on a remote computer through your cloud computing provider, you free up space on your company’s server and on each individual computer. The costs are monthly rather than investing in the total cost of the server.

Who Offers Cloud Computing and Who Uses It?

Salesforce.com – This company is a huge player in cloud computing. The company offers several cloud computing applications through the Force.com platform. Numerous companies have taken advantage of their cloud computing offerings. Many of the applications are related to customer relationship management (CRM).

Amazon Web Services – Amazon allows businesses to access applications through the cloud. This increases the mobility of their clients by allowing them to access applications in any location that has a web browser and internet connection. Amazon utilizes the EC2 cloud computing platform.

GoogleGoogle App Engine allows developers to create applications in the cloud and Google also has clients using cloud applications like Google Apps and Google Docs. ChromeOS virtually hosts the entire operating system through the web browser. Every application is hosted through cloud services and applications.

Microsoft – Microsoft’s Azure platform allows users to host and scale their web applications using Microsoft’s data centers. Microsoft has worked with eBay, HP and Dell to host their cloud services.

IBM – IBM SmartCloud is IBM’s attempt to offer its customers applications in the cloud. They have been perfecting their cloud computing applications.

Advantages of Cloud Computing

No Initial Server Investment – Investing in servers is often an expensive endeavor. Businesses must anticipate and plan for the amount of space and bandwidth necessary to host applications and meet the demand of its employees and customers. With cloud-based computing, there are no or minimal initial investment costs. Businesses pay by the month per group of subscriptions.

No Software Downloads – There are no software downloads. The program is web-based, so all employees need is a login ID, password and a web browser. The internet connection should also be fairly good to process some of the applications, as slower speeds will hinder production and defeat the purpose of having widely accessible information.

Scalable – Because of the scalability, clients can roll the applications out to new employees easily. In some cases, cloud computing takes the planning out of the amount of software licenses needed for future growth. New employees can have access to applications within minutes of receiving their login ID and temporary password. Employees with smartphones may even access their applications through their mobile broadband network.

Highly Usability Factor – The applications are easy to use and access via laptop or smartphone over mobile broadband networks. There is not a lot of training required or a huge learning curve, so the transition to cloud use should be relatively smooth.

Inexpensive – The monthly fees are inexpensive and do not require a huge investment from small businesses up front. Since the costs are affordable, clients may invest the money saved into other areas of the business. Product development, marketing and sales are wise investments with the savings.

What Cloud Computing Means?

Cloud computing is a unique way of stating that applications are hosted on a remote server through web-based applications. Since the applications are not downloaded directly onto the computer, companies do not have to worry about each client having significant storage space on their computers. Companies only have to be concerned with a fast internet or mobile broadband connection and a highly usable web-based business. As cloud computing becomes more inexpensive and widely available, the future of businesses big and small may change altogether.

This is a guest post from Blake Sanders. Blake is a writer at broadband comparison site Broadband Expert, where he specializes in providing news on the best unlimited mobile broadband packages as well as the latest in high speed internet information.

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