Analytics at the Center of the Cloud
March 12, 2012

Jeffrey Kaplan

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Today's Cloud services are enabling organizations of all sizes across a rapidly expanding array of industries to capture data, analyze its implications and disseminate timely insight so end-users and executives can act more effectively.

The growing challenges associated with 'Big Data' have been well documented. Cisco Systems predicts global cloud computing traffic will grow from 130 exabytes today to 1.6 zettabytes in 2015, a 66% CAGR. Sadly, Gartner says more than 85% of Fortune 500 organizations will fail to effectively exploit big data for competitive advantage through 2015.

In response to this issue, a recent IDC study forecasted the market for big data technology and services will grow from $3.2 billion in 2010 to $16.9 billion in 2015.

Here's how the Cloud has become a pivotal part of solving today's big data problem.

Leading infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) providers are providing more cost-effective data storage, archival and back-up resources to capture and retain data. Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Rackspace are setting the standard for low-cost, yet highly reliable IaaS resources that can be quickly launched and easily accessed.

And, a growing number of other Cloud service providers are offering increasingly sophisticated database management and analytic engines to plow through the reservoirs of rising data to make it more usable.

A widening array of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) vendors are delivering more powerful and flexible business intelligence (BI) solutions and analytics tools that enable corporate executives and end-users to interpret various data streams and incorporate it in a timely fashion to help them do their jobs more successfully.

And, the leading Platforms-as-a-Service (PaaS) solutions are permitting organizations to create their own applications that can tap into internal and external data sources to drive better business decisions to respond to changing customer needs and competitive forces.

Without these Cloud-based resources and tools, most organizations would be unable to cope with today's explosive growth of data, and unable to share timely information and insight across their increasingly dispersed employees.

Jeffrey Kaplan is the Managing Director of THINKstrategies and Founder of the Cloud Computing Showplace.

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