Innovative cloud apps are hitting legacy-based industries too; TV broadcasters being one of them. Consumers want internet access to shows and sports on tablets and phones.
Sun Microsystems once marketed itself with the phrase, “The Network IS the computer“. Now the Cloud is bigger than the network. Witness the recent story that Amazon’s Cloud Services and its data center pass 1% of ALL internet traffic. That’s a lot of data for any single company to possess at any fraction of time in a day. I wonder too how this compares to the volume that the NSA handles by rerouting the whole Internet through its secret server closets at key data network providers around the U.S? A very few seem to be handling an outsize portion of data that moves on what we consider the ‘internet’. But in fact a greater deal of it moves within each company’s own network as a form of Intranet (think Amazon Web Services and Google’s Data Center infrastructure). Those private nets exist in order for the owners to ‘add value’ to the traffic and the advertisers who help subsidize this traffic by delivering eyeballs to the adverts.
But this article that I’m commenting on isn’t really looking at Internet traffic, instead it is all about the growth of these companies in terms of total employees. Cloud based service providers grew at a much faster rate than any other kind of technology company worldwide. The prerequisites for this phenomenon is the erosion of what were high end technologies into every commodities. High speed networks, large data centers and mass virtualization all work in concert to bring down the incremental cost of moving, storing and processing a data packet. The turn towards the data center (after a turn away from it using desktop computers) is becoming profitable as the big data cloud providers differentiate their assets. New services like Spotify pop-up on the back of Amazon Web Services, because they need the infrastructure but don’t have the capital to do it themselves. This would not have been possible in the old days of the Internet bubble when Sun Microsystems and Cisco ruled the day.
And finally the entertainment industry too feels the tug of the Cloud through content delivery services which at one time were only a high end option for the very well-heeled companies that could afford it. Now CDNs are a commodity as well, though maybe not as inexpensive as say a simple web-mail inbox. Still if you need something to move reliably to the endpoints of the Internet and you cannot afford to provision the data network and co-location servers ’round the world you just get someone else to do it. And not just someone who only does content delivery networks no, the specialization of these cloud providers isn’t that narrow. They are like big utility companies providing much more integration between all these pieces. Akamai and Limelight were the go to guys, but now if you’re already using AWS why not just tack-on the CDN service too while you’re at it (that lower friction is a tremendous value add). All of these utility computing services and the heavy lifting required to make them scale are what will drive further growth in hiring in the future no doubt and will make the Cloud providers much richer than the guys owning and operating the Point-of-Presence nodes on the Internet.
- Just how big is the Amazon cloud anyway? (gigaom.com)
- Newvem pulls back the curtain on Amazon cloud usage (gigaom.com)
- Virtual Application Networks (hazimsos.wordpress.com)
- Content Delivery Network – Primer (techbiztrends.wordpress.com)