Why Cloud? Cloud computing simply put is the practice of using a network of remote servers hosted on the Internet to store, manage, and process data, rather than a local server or a personal computer. This means when you do something as simple as posting on Facebook you're\u00a0in the cloud. When you check your bank balance on your phone,\u00a0you're in the cloud. So why is it then that so many organisations are still afraid of storing their data in the cloud? This fear normally comes down to the unknown. As an IT manager not being able to see the physical server where all your company data is stored can be\u00a0unnerving. The idea too of it being stored in a large data-centre can seem unsafe and hard to manage and control.\u00a0 However, that way of thinking is changing with public cloud adoption increasing to 92% in 2018 and with IDC research saying that by 2020, the Irish cloud market will be worth \u20ac468m.\u00a0 So what has changed IT managers minds? What has made the cloud more accessible? Well it's the fact that technology is starting to become a lot more than the server that just sits in the basement. With IOT and AI technology becoming a major factor behind business success, cloud computing is leading the way. What cloud solution should I choose though?\u00a0 With all this growth comes a lot of options of what the best cloud solution is? At Typetec, we take great pride in researching all our solutions and will always rigorously test new technology out before introducing it to our customers. Which is why we're confident 'tooting our own horn' when it comes to Azure. Having adopted our own internal systems to Microsoft Azure and migration all our servers to the cloud we've been delighted with the results. What is Azure? Think of Azure like a big toolbox. The best tools are constantly being developed and put in it so no matter what needs to be fixed or enhanced Azure has the tools to do it. A more defined definition of Azure is a growing collection of integrated cloud services - like analytics, computing, database, mobile, networking, storage and web - for moving faster, achieving more, and saving money. Applications, frameworks, platforms, operating systems, programming languages, databases, device and tolls - Azure support the broadest selection of technology and is constantly evolving. What can it do for me though? Sounds great but what does all the above mean? Well Azure can really be what ever you want it be! It allows you to create your own vision, creating your own personal cloud solution that will help to innovate and modernise your workplace. Here are some of the benefits of the Azure cloud for small to medium enterprises in Ireland. Benefits: Flexibility Working in the cloud doesn't have to mean always on time costs. For small business customers you can be savvy with your costs turning off non-essential servers at night on the weekend or during non busy periods. Opening up huge cost savings and the ability to have technology that can scale and grow with your business. Host and access your data locally: Microsoft has data centres as locally as Clondalkin so you don't have to worry about your data being sent half way around the world. You also have the advantage of these facilities being state of the art in terms of storage and protection given you peace of mind. Disaster Recovery & Business Continuity Businesses of all sizes should be investing in robust disaster recovery, but for smaller businesses who lack the required cash and expertise, this is often more an ideal than the reality. Cloud is now helping more organisations afford not only back-up and disaster recovery but options around business continuity too. So not only is your data safe in a disaster but your office is able to continue working through disaster with minimum downtime. Up-to-date technology With Microsoft's automatic updates you can stay in the loop on all the latest technology. Build website and applications Microsoft's tagline for Azure is 'your vision, your cloud' and this can't be more true than when it comes to the ability to build applications and even websites in the cloud. Typetec will help you create and deploy mission-critical web applications that scale with your business. OPEX V CAPEX\u00a0 Cloud computing cuts out the high cost of hardware. You simply pay as you go and enjoy a subscription-based model that\u2019s kind to your cash flow. Add to that the ease of setup and management and suddenly your scary, hairy Cloud IT project looks at lot friendlier. Increased Collaboration With Office 365 you don't only get access to a secure email but access to a suite of collaboration and communication tools that allows you to access edit and share documents anytime, anywhere together. Mobility With cloud computing, if you\u2019ve got an internet connection you can be at work. And with workplace culture becoming less the 9 to 5 and more about the work\/life balance employees can work from anywhere, anytime on any device with the cloud. The result? Businesses can offer more flexible working perks to employees so they can enjoy the work-life balance that suits them \u2013\u00a0without productivity taking a hit. Enhanced Security and Compliance The cloud helps safeguard your business from the growing threat of cyberattacks, like ransomware and viruses. Microsoft invests \u20ac1bn annually into their cloud security to create equipments, practices and personnel that will keep your data safe. Giving you industrial strength security on a small biz budget. Power of a large enterprise Moving to the cloud with Typetec gives you access to Microsoft's enterprise-class technology. Allowing for even the smallest start-up to act as fast and powerful as their established competitors. David now packs a Goliath-sized punch. Next Steps: So there you have it. The who, what, where, when and why of cloud computing. You're next step? To get in contact with Typetec to find out what your cloud vision looks like. Still not convinced? Check out our other articles about cloud computing below or find out more about Azure.