Is Cloud Computing Killing the Hardware Stars? Dell, HP: Take Heed

Is Cloud Computing Killing the Hardware Stars? Dell, HP: Take Heed

New York Times “Bits” writer Quentin Hardy declared major victory last week for cloud computing.

The triumph resounded well enough to earn the title “The Week the Cloud Won.” After lengthy months of incremental progress, cloud’s organizations have finally chipped away at the big boys of technology like Dell and Hewlett Packard. These heavy hitters in “enterprise computing” dwindled in earnings, whereas Salesforce.com, a major cloud computing company, saw its profits skyrocket by nearly 40%.

True cloud diehards interpret these developments, as does Hardy, as bellwethers of auspicious change for cloud. They could indicate that a major exodus to the new technology is afoot. But most people are using the cloud to handle their data from afar. They’re not in the mood to pick at it financially. What value is all this stock talk to cloud laypeople? Money talks, for one thing. Follow finances, and you keep solid track of the zeitgeist in a given field.

Meticulous tracking is greatly needed for the cloud, which often comes off as amorphous and difficult to parse for specific analytic information. Cloud can therefore benefit from the rigid, tractable arena of stocks.
Plus you don’t need to know the daily NASDAQ to comprehend how that acronym associates with big-name companies. Apple, Google, and now Facebook, among other well-known organizations, translate their clout among the public into tick marks on finance charts.

Last week’s finance charts further prove that hardware business’ salad days are waning via the cloud’s clout. Hardy notes how “employees find they can do more tasks on mobile devices,” to which hardware is ceding the communication stage. The preponderance of cloud apps that exclusively function on the iPhone or Android evinces this, to begin.

What’s more, we live in the Age of the Sense of Touch. As a culture, we are falling for what our fingers feel most — aka, our smartphones. Bulky laptops are old hat nowadays. And we might as well deem desktops the new dinosaurs; their extinction is imminent.

And we want a lot from a little. Tiny devices that punch above their weight attract us more than big and bold one-trick-pony units.
So how can cloud aficionados keep abreast of this cloud progress?

They must consistently update their mobile phones, capitalizing on the new technology to which the cloud, as a rule of thumb, is highly receptive. Synchronizing smartphones to laptops or desktops, with appropriate cloud products, goes without saying.

Finally, track those stocks. You might not moonlight as a day trader. But as cloud escalates in Wall Street, paying attention can land you in the profitable in-crowd.

By Jeff Norman

Jeff Norman

Jeff Norman is a freelance writer currently based in New York City. He's moved into writing about cloud computing from substantial work in culture and the arts. He earned his undergraduate degree in English at Stanford and has studied at Oxford and Cambridge.
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