Fortunately for consumers many technologies emerge and grow congruently. We’ve seen throughout history a repeat of the following scenario. Inventor or innovator finds a new way of doing things only to discover shortly thereafter that their race for the next patent was not unique. The novelty of their particular invention was overshadowed by another similarly inventive entrepreneur. Both television and airplanes were two industries which required legal battles before the intellectual property could be completely solidified. While cloud computing is considered somewhat new, its sister online storage – generally done via FTP in times past – is now being replaced by many concurrently developed technologies.
While we look at cloud computing and recognize it as a substantially growing market. However, its predecessor – FTP and online storage – still represents a substantial majority of what is done in the online storage arena. In fact, many new and emerging online storage companies are looking for ways to differentiate themselves with applications for collaboration, file transfer, and creativity. Unfortunately, at least from what I can see, after a certain point there is little differentiation that can be had, especially when the original “cloud” was simply an file transfer protocol system that allow for movement of files. Companies certainly can find ways to differentiate themselves from one another, but many of the differences become negligible in light of the majority of what actually goes on in the cloud.
Things are rapidly changing, however. Those who are able to successfully able to differentiate themselves while at the same time amass a slew of enterprise clients will be able to successfully migrate through the fray that is coming in cloud computing. Amazon, Microsoft, Google and a slew of other venture backed smaller entities are even giving away a great deal of their storage and cloud offerings. This is partly due to the fact that the companies themselves have a great deal of excess capacity and partly due to the desire to gain rapid market share.
But when will the demand finally start to keep up with the current oversupply? It may take a couple of years, but I surmise that by the time that happens the big players in the cloud computing realm will have already brought on a great deal more server and network capacity to fulfill the demand. It seems that in IT, supply is always greater than demand. It’s too bad that is not also true of innovation and intellectual property. Then and only then would we truly see the spike in demand that would help to expand multiple industries.