Cloud computing could generate as much as $US6.2 trillion globally in economic value over the next 12 years driven by a doubling in the internet population worldwide and the major shift in enterprise IT towards the cloud.
Most of this value will be captured by consumers via cheaper and better services, while enterprise IT will benefit by as much as $US700 billion in productivity improvements.
These are among the key findings in a study by management consultants McKinsey and Company into disruptive technologies.
The author's note, however, key impediments remain including network capacity, which they describe a critical enabler.
Consumer and enterprise trust remains a significant hurdle, as do regulatory frame works which currently place jurisdictional constraints upon companies.
But just as important is cultural resistance from with IT departments, “cloud deployment represents a significant shift in IT management practices, from in-house to lower cost outsourced solutions, raising concerns about loss of control.”
The study also notes that cloud will require new budget disciplines and skill sets.
“Another factor is the complexity of migrating enterprise IT systems with multiple platforms, network protocols and programming environments into the cloud.”
Cloud will also level the playing field for smaller companies, ”Cloud computing lets SME’s avoid tying up capital in IT and frees them from IT infrastructure management and demand planning, giving them the ability to compete more effectively with big companies.”