What Does “Cloud” Actually Mean?

We started talking about “the cloud” back in 2008 and although we’re all using it every day for business or pleasure, there seems to be some confusion on what exactly the term cloud means…

That’s because the idea of being able to use the Internet as if it’s your own computer platform is hard to wrap your head around. So, my company took it upon itself to survey more than 1,000 of the general public in the UK on the meaning of “cloud computing”.

After a careful analysis we discovered that 50 per cent of them don’t have a clue what the cloud is, almost two in five people (38 per cent) had little or no understanding of the term, while only a third (34 per cent) were confident that they knew what it meant.

What’s interesting is that even though most people use cloud-based services and cloud hosting every single day to save documents online, edit images or manage projects online, they don’t even realise it. What’s more, can you believe that the young generation, 18 to 24 year olds, who is in fact the biggest consumer of cloud-based services, has the worst understanding of the cloud?

They are the ones who are constantly using iTunes, Dropbox and other cloud-based products yet only 30 per cent of them think these are cloud services. For more interesting facts, check out our full infographic below to see just how many people are in the dark about this cutting edge technology.

If you’re one of them and want to find out how you can use cloud hosting or cloud virtual private servers for your business, then read on…

At the heart of the cloud

“Cloud computing” is a nebulous term used for when people prefer to “rent” online software and services instead of purchasing and installing them on their own computers.

When using cloud VPS hosting, you have access to all the resources you need to work or run a business online – starting from programs to the freedom to access your documents online, no matter where you are, thus removing the need to be at your own computer.

Imagine you’re starting a small business with 10 to 20 employees. Using cloud hosting can help you save money as you won’t need to pay a fortune for software when you can just “rent” it. Your employees will be able to save their work in your own cloud virtual private server, making it easy for them to work from anywhere in the world. Everything is online and you can access it all by simply opening your web browser.

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Tim Fuell only joined the Webfusion team last year but having been a customer of the group for more than 10 years, he knew all about their success in the Web hosting field. After writing his Masters thesis on the threat of cybersquatting way back in 1998, he has seen the Internet grow beyond even his wildest dreams. A journalist for over 16 years and a qualified Solicitor, Tim is one of a team of bloggers in the Webfusion stable aiming to educate, inform and assist their online readership.