|Backblaze storage appliance, CC-BY Flickr user ChrisDag|
In the UK we have around 100 universities using either the Google Apps or Office365 products, which Jisc has brokered national deals for through our cloud services activity. A “decent” Storage Area Network with Fibre Channel, 0.5PB-1PB of mirrored SAS storage [*] and tape backup starts at around £500K, so this potentially represents savings to the sector of as much as £50m. Good news as we head towards Austerity 2.0? But I think we will see much more radical change in the future, as the corporate IT function is increasingly “hollowed out” by these kinds of services. Watch Microsoft’s promo video above for their RemoteApp technology and ask yourself whether in the future we will get most of our Windows applications from a corporate instance of the Microsoft Store – with all those nasty software packaging, licensing and billing issues handled for us. Perhaps we have only just started to see the disruptive effect of cloud computing on corporate IT, and in years to come we may find ourselves looking back at June 25th 2014 as the day it all changed.
[*] Such as you might require to establish a Research Data service, or users’ home drives.
[This piece originally appeared on the Jisc Technology Foresight blog]