Over 10 years ago, while I was still in Africa & we planned for rolling out remote backup, email & domain hosting, platform management, in addition to some other services. Later on, in MTN, such services were flagship projects that were being promoted internally, waiting for the right time to launch. Later on, working with STC, domain & email hosting, managed router service, and some other services have been operational for sometime. Although in both cases, these services did not pick up once launched, two years ago the hype around the cloud boosted their sales up.
The cloud has been there and been provided in different companies for a very long time. Blackberry has provided email services & email push for sometime. The cloud services have been around since the early 2000’s but have not picked up sales and rollout as expected.
Some of the reasons for slow penetration in the market is due to the security threats, lack of trust, high CAPEX to roll out, quality of service, in addition to some other reasons. Customers on one end are hesitant to buy cloud services while providers are promoting or commoditizing these products and services the right way to entice these customers. Some companies have even pushed commission on cloud sales 5 times more than their traditional products.
Mobile cloud sales (mobile apps that store & process data at a datacenter) are the best model of successful cloud services; however, most of these are consumer cloud services rather than enterprise cloud services. The cloud has been intended for the enterprise though!
The billion dollars question is: how to promote the cloud?
To do so, companies need to look at what the customers need, want, & are looking for and try to look at things from a customer’s point of view. Only then would the cloud fly high and become the center of all computing.