Technology businesses are lured to offer cloud-based services for some reasons, mainly due to the huge market and demand for cloud computing solutions and services.
The latest news come from Sprint Nextel, that will enter cloud services business in the fourth quarter of 2011 – following the footsteps of Verizon Communications, AT&T, and the rest. So, offering cloud services seems to be a good business strategy to get more clients.
Cloud services are lucrative, but…
With such a huge market and strong demand, all tech businesses are going to offer cloud services, right? Not likely.
Sure, the majority is offering cloud services today or going to offer them in the near future, but there are some tech businesses that stick to what they are doing just fine.
A case study in cloud hosting business: HostGator and SiteCloud
One of such IT businesses is HostGator, one of the most popular web hosting providers. Many ask whether cloud hosting services are in HostGator’s near future plan. The answer is: no. You can follow the discussion on this on the official HostGator forums.
I think they have valid reason for that. According to this interview on WebHostingClue.com, HostGator focuses on quality customer support at affordable price tag – something that HostGator excels on – instead of exploring cloud hosting opportunities.
According to Brent Oxley, CEO of HostGator, cloud hosting – on the other hand – is typically more expensive, slower and less reliable when compared with the existing services.
Less reliable? Yes – remember SiteCloud? It’s a sister company of GreenGeeks offering cutting edge cloud hosting services. Before it divested last year, there are plenty of technical issues that nag the hosting and its clients for weeks. Eventually, SiteCloud users were migrated to GreenGeeks. A prominent example of cloud hosting failure.
So – will all tech businesses offer cloud solutions?
The message is clear: Cloud computing technologies – regardless of how promising they are – are still not mature yet; there are hiccups here and there, including the recent cloud outages.
Cloud businesses that are pioneers in offering cloud services, such as Microsoft, Amazon, Google, Rackspace, Salesforce, etc., are investing in technologies and people to make their cloud reliable – but they take care challenging situations at the expense of their clients. What do you expect to happen in a cloud outage, anyway? That’s right – angry customers.
When cloud computing is becoming more reliable in the future, I can see more and more tech businesses offer cloud services.
But in my opinion, when cloud computing if finally becoming mainstream, I don’t think offering cloud services just to win customers is no longer necessary. The cloud will dissolve in tech businesses’ backend; the cloud will no longer be a solution, but rather a prerequisite when a budding entrepreneur want to start a tech business.
I can be very wrong, but I agree with what HostGator’s Brent Oxley said: All customers really want is reliable services at affordable price with great customer support. Why bother with all the cutting-edge stuffs riding at the back of cloud computing trends?
So, what’s your opinion? Will all tech businesses offer cloud services?