Welcome to The Cloud 5, our weekly feature where we scour the web searching for the five most intriguing and poignant cloud links we can find.
Before we jump into this week's links, please have a look at one of our most recent blog posts, The New IT Imperative: Building Engagement and Humanity Into The Business. In a typical IT driven implementation, they install a system with little input from the people actually using it, so it's little wonder that in the end people don't want to use it. When you build engagement into your systems and include the employees involved, Gartner says, good things follow.
And without further delay, here we go with this week's links:
A Closer Look Inside IBM's Cloud Challenge | New York Times
IBM sees the market is shifting and it's trying to reinvent itself as a cloud company. From buying SoftLayer and Cloudant to launching a new cloud marketplace to sell products directly to lines of business, they are pivoting the way they do business, and they are doing all the right things. But will it be enough and can they make the same kind of money in this model?
Microsoft picked a bad week to release its new cloud music service. That's because it was the same week that Apple reportedly bought Beats (although that's still not official). Under the best of circumstances, Microsoft was late to the game, but to do it the same week Apple bought Beats was a classic case of bad timing.
If you believe what you read about Alibaba, which is a Chinese computing giant that includes search, social and cloud, they are about to do an IPO in the US that could give them the cash to expand outside of China. For starters, they are building a data center in Hong Kong to house their cloud computing initiative. They definitely bears watching.
Climbing the Enterprise Cloud Ladder | The Next Web
Time waits for no industry, no not even the cloud, to paraphrase an old Rolling Stones song. As the cloud industry matures, it's going to head into a natural period of consolidation just as other industries have before it and there are some things to consider before you make a move with a cloud purchase.
There is always a great deal of FUD when it comes to moving to the cloud, but as more companies like Whirlpool go all-in on a project of this scope, it's going to get easier and easier to refute. This comes on the heels of a deal between Box and GE to provide Box for 300,000 GE employees worldwide. The deals are getting bigger and it's getting harder to ignore.
Photo Credit: Ron Miller. Used under CC 2.0 license.