November 10, 2009

Cloud Computing Revenues To Exceed $14B In Five Years

Revenues from "cloud computing", or Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), will exceed $14 billion annually by 2014, market research firm Gartner predicted on Monday.

Meanwhile, sales from businesses using software programs hosted online as services over the Internet "cloud" will reach $7.5 billion dollars this year, a 17.7 percent surge from 2008, Gartner said.

The move toward cloud computing has picked up steam during the economic slowdown, since the services allow businesses to rent applications as needed, without incurring the costs of purchasing, installing, updating and maintaining the software on their own machines.

"The adoption of SaaS continues to grow and evolve within the enterprise application markets," the AFP news agency quoted Gartner research director Sharon Mertz as saying.

Suppliers are responding to growing market demands by boosting the types of business computing services hosted online, she added.

On Monday, Microsoft Corp. announced an agreement with Taiwan's Chunghwa Telecom Co. (CHT) to work together on cloud computing services.

The companies will collaborate to "deliver a new generation of seamless, connected experiences that bring the power of cloud computing to consumers and to business" in Taiwan, said Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

Among the collaborative efforts is a datacenter optimized for hosting online business services and new offerings for users of smartphones, personal computers and televisions, said Ballmer in a statement.

"We hope that our strategic alliance with Microsoft will result in a more convenient mobile experience for consumers," said CHT chief executive Shyue-Ching Lu.

"The combination of Microsoft's innovative technologies and CHT's resources is intended to accelerate the application of cloud technologies on actual services, bringing consumers convenient services and fresh user experiences," he told the AFP.

Although Microsoft earned its fortune selling packaged software such as its Windows operating systems and Office work programs, the software giant has been slowly adapting to an inevitable market shift to cloud computing.


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