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Do You Need Cloud Computing?
Cloud computing, often referred to as cloud storage, is a service that allows users to access and store information on a server that is hosted over the internet. All of the storage is considered self-service and the user is responsible for updating, downloading and managing their own storage. Rather than installing these storage solutions on a device, users can access their cloud storage online through their web browser using the provider’s site.
Cloud computing allows a user to perform a multitude of tasks online from any device and all items are updated in real time. Users likely already utilize some form of cloud service – only they do not realize it. For example, small businesses that use QuickBooks Online are already using a form of cloud service for their bookkeeping. Cloud applications are part of the cloud computing family since they operate entirely online and the user must log-in to a web browser and be connected to the internet in order to access, download and update their files.
Free Cloud Services
There are a variety of cloud computing services such as Google, Microsoft, and Amazon. These managed service providers allow users to store information, email and collaborate on files from one location and for free. Larger businesses are able to use similar services, but typically will have to pay for an upgraded account to access all features and increase their storage space.
Why Should Businesses Switch to the Cloud?
Not every business user is convinced that the cloud is right for them. That being said, more small business users are taking advantage of the versatility and money-saving benefits of cloud storage and cloud computing each day. Cloud storage gives smaller businesses the same data and network capabilities of larger corporations, but without the overhead costs associated with network storage and IT departments.
Small businesses are also utilizing cloud computing for their accounting and human resources software applications. Cloud services such as Smart Recruiters allows small and medium-sized business the ability to track applications and resumes received for job postings. Freshbooks is an example of an online accounting program that gives small businesses the ability to have the same accounting capabilities of big companies, but without the need to purchase multiple software licenses.
Cloud storage and cloud computing are becoming a way of life for most individuals and small businesses. Since cloud computing is more reliable than traditional hard-drive storage, more private users are storing their documents, photographs and other media files on the cloud too.
By KoriLynn Johnston
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