Cloud computing is the delivery of on-demand computing services — including servers, storage, analytics — over the Internet (the cloud).
Essentially, it allows businesses and other users to utilize the computing power and storage of hundreds of computers without having them physically present in the office. This enables businesses and enterprises to have flexible resources, economies of scale and the latest innovations.
These cloud computing services are powered by multiple large data centers that feature cutting-edge technology, rather than a single data center that can bring potential latency and other issues to a business or enterprise’s operations.
Cloud-service providers such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud Platform build at such a large scale that businesses can gain access to these specialized resources at relatively little cost.
Regardless of the project, cloud computing allows businesses to benefit from near-infinite available resources that can be translated into faster speed to market, lower costs and more.
Another great benefit of adopting cloud computing is that it can provide the global elasticity to scale operations at a moment’s notice.
Cloud computing can increase or decrease any of the services that it offers in a short period of time — whether your business needs less storage or more computing power for a week or a month.
For instance, in the retail industry, Black Friday and Cyber Monday — the two biggest online selling days — require extensive resources to handle the immense web traffic. However, in as little as 24 hours, the promotions will end and the web traffic will drastically drop.
Continuing to spend extensive resources to support the level of traffic seen on Black Friday and Cyber Monday are inefficient and unnecessary.
Cloud computing offers retailers, video game publishers, media organizations and others the ability to scale their resources up and down to meet any demand.
In addition, cloud computing offers a complementary relationship with IoT technology, which generates massive amounts of data through its connected devices. The cloud provides IoT-connected devices with the back-end processing power, intelligent analytics and storage capabilities to handle the large aggregate data load.
For example, if a national government decided to place hundreds of sensors within each government building to measure hourly temperature readings, the mass data sent back to their personal data center could crash their server.
Cloud computing offers a virtually infinite amount of storage and other services without the cost of building an entire data center for your operations.
This saves businesses from worrying about the amount of data their personal IoT infrastructure can handle running.
Also, the metered pricing of most cloud-based services provides businesses and enterprises with a cost-effective computing solution by allowing them to pay only for what they use.
This can provide additional flexibility when businesses want to lower their data load and storage capabilities to cut unnecessary expenses. In addition, this capability provides businesses with the elasticity to determine what cloud services they require and when, allowing them to streamline their operations.
Since spinning up cloud resources often requires no more than a few mouse clicks, the cloud can help to eliminate unnecessary planning and potential delays, ensuring IoT projects are operating as soon as possible.
Cloud computing can provide IoT projects with heightened security while maintaining needed mobility and scalability.
Authentication and encryption protocols, along with the ability to manage and authenticate users using biometrics, are just a few ways that cloud-based services have empowered IoT security.