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Is there sunshine ahead for cloud computing?  

The global cloud-computing market is expected to reach $241 billion in 2020, up from $41 billion in 2010, according to Forrester Research. That long-term potential is reflected in the highflying stocks of companies actively involved in the concept.

A stumbling block, however, is concern over the security of data when a client firm can no longer control it on its own premises. Hackers and crashed systems are, after all, among a company’s worst nightmares.

And while the cloud is a definite boon to smaller firms, more established companies have already made significant investments in equipment and staffing. There is also confusion over what cloud computing really is and who provides it.

The field’s successful pioneer is Salesforce.com Inc., a well-managed company that over the last decade effectively introduced this cost-saving business model. It offered a monthly subscription service that allowed firms to simply go to their Web browsers, point to salesforce.com and begin using it. That turned out to be a good financial deal for its clients as well as for its shareholders.

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Written by Guru Kirthigavasan

July 31st, 2011 at 6:20 am