How cloud computing is shaping the future of business

Cloud computing has revolutionised the way businesses run. Why? Because before its widespread adoption, companies had to own their own IT infrastructure or data centres to manage their computing needs. Now these resources can be accessed over the internet “the cloud”, so businesses can avoid the upfront cost and complexity of maintaining on-premise IT and simply pay for what they use.

The advent of cloud computing services has transformed the way businesses operate by offering greater flexibility, scalability, accessibility, and cost-effectiveness through on-demand computing resources and services delivered over the internet.

But we understand that migrating to the cloud involves relinquishing a certain amount of control and is a big decision. In this article we’ve covered what it is, the types of platforms available, and the benefits to businesses.

What is cloud computing?

Cloud computing is a way to use computer services over the internet. Instead of keeping software and data on your own computer, you access and store them on remote servers that you can reach online. This means you can use applications, store files, and process data without needing to manage the physical hardware or software yourself.

To understand cloud computing, think of it as two platforms: what you see, and behind the scenes.

Front-End Platform: This is what users interact with directly. It includes:

  • User interfaces: these could be web browsers, mobile apps, or client applications.
  • Client devices: the devices used to access the cloud services, such as computers, smartphones, or tablets.

Back-End Platform: This is where the cloud infrastructure and services reside. It includes:

  • Servers: physical or virtual machines that provide computing power and run applications.
  • Storage: systems for storing data, which could be traditional databases, file storage, or distributed storage systems.
  • Databases: systems for managing and retrieving data efficiently.
  • Networking: components that facilitate communication within and between cloud systems, such as routers, switches, and internet connections.
  • Middleware: software that connects different systems and services, ensuring they can work together seamlessly.
  • Hypervisors: virtualisation software that allows multiple virtual machines to run on a single physical machine.

For example Gmail, personal storage on your smartphone, and streaming services such as Netflix, are all underpinned by cloud computing. As long as you have internet connection, you can connect to any service in the “cloud”.

cloud computing diagramSource: Milestones Education

Did you know? Cloud computing gets its name from the practice of drawing the internet infrastructure as a cloud in network flowcharts and patent diagrams from the 1990s.

Cloud services infrastructure

Cloud services are infrastructure, platforms or software hosted by third-party providers and made available to users through the internet. They fall into three main categories.

What is Infrastructure as a Service?

Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) refers to the delivery of fundamental computing resources over the internet, allowing users to rent virtual servers, storage, and networking infrastructure on a pay-as-you-go basis. It’s for companies who want to build applications from the ground up and keep control of all the elements. Popular providers include Microsoft Azure and Google Compute Engine.

What is Platform as a Service?

Platform as a Service (PaaS) is the next layer up, offering a platform and environment for developers to build, deploy, and manage applications without worrying about the underlying infrastructure. Examples include Google App Engine and Heroku.

What is Software as a Service? (Saas)

Software as a Service (SaaS) is the version of cloud computing most people have experienced on a day-to-day basis. It delivers software applications via a web browser or app on a subscription basis or per-user basis, eliminating the need for users to install, maintain, and manage software locally. Common examples are Gmail and Microsoft Office 365.

The 4 types of cloud computing

Just as not all clouds are the same, cloud computing comes in various forms. Four key models have evolved that provide different cloud environments.

  1. Public cloud – this is the classic cloud-computing model which is owned and operated by huge third-party cloud service providers who deliver computing resources such as servers, storage, and networking over the internet. These resources are shared among multiple customers, offering cost efficiencies, and also the ability to rapidly scale a service if needed.
  2. Private cloud – has some of the advantages of a public cloud but no need to worry about losing control over data and services because these dedicated cloud environments are exclusively used by a single organisation (ie there is a corporate firewall). They can be hosted on-premise or hosted off-site by a third-party managed cloud service provider.
  3. Hybrid cloud – combines elements of both, which is where most businesses are in reality. Workloads can be moved between public and private clouds based on factors such as cost, performance, and security requirements.
  4. Multicloud – to avoid being locked in to just one provider and in part to find a good mix of technologies, this is the use of multiple cloud computing platforms or services from different providers. A new and increasing challenge for business will be being able to connect to cloud services from multiple providers with workflow differences.

Benefits of cloud computing to business

Cloud computing benefits can really give businesses a competitive edge, drive innovation and accelerate growth in today’s digital economy.

Scale and flexibility

The number one benefit is the scale and flexibility it provides a business in terms of accessing information when needed – from anywhere in the world, without costly infrastructure elements. With cloud-based solutions, employees can access applications and data from any device, anywhere, at any time, facilitating remote work, collaboration, and productivity.

Cost savings

Secondly, it’s simply more cost effective, with its pay-as-you-use pricing and no upfront investment. Cloud services also often feature built-in optimisation features to further help business minimise costs.


Thirdly, it’s enhanced security. Cloud service providers such as MSP Blueshift, invest heavily in state-of-the-art security measures and compliance certifications to protect customer data and infrastructure from cyber threats, unauthorised access, and data breaches. Cloud security features include encryption, identity and access management (IAM), network firewalls, threat detection, and multi-factor authentication (MFA), ensuring data confidentiality, integrity, and availability.

While there are big advantages, cloud computing challenges will always be there. The main ones are internet connection (must be reliable); data security and privacy concerns; reduced visibility and control over infrastructure; and potential issues with cloud migration and integration. This is where a reputable managed cloud services provider like MSP Blueshift comes in. We’ve made it our business to take all the stress out of transitioning to the cloud, so you can focus on your core operations.

How cloud computing is shaping the future of business

As technology continues to evolve, cloud computing will play an increasingly pivotal role in shaping the future of business. By embracing cloud-first strategies and leveraging emerging technologies, businesses can stay ahead of the curve and unlock new opportunities for success in the digital economy.

The future of cloud computing holds endless possibilities, including:

  • Creating cloud-native applications
  • Storing, backing up, and recovering data
  • Streaming audio and video content
  • Analysing data using cloud-based machine learning and AI services.

In summary, cloud computing has revolutionised the way businesses operate, offering unparalleled flexibility, scalability, and efficiency. By understanding the key concepts and benefits of cloud computing, businesses can harness its transformative power to drive innovation and growth in the digital age. But of course, you need to have internet connection.

Contact us today to discover how MSP Blueshift can facilitate a seamless and swift transition to the cloud for your business.