While cloud is transforming the way businesses adopt and deploy technology, many organizations struggle with cloud adoption challenges. According to a recent Frost & Sullivan survey, only 14 percent of U.S. businesses use public cloud Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). And while there is concrete evidence that public cloud services deliver cost savings, offer greater scalability, and speed time to market, IT decision makers remain wary. A full 70 percent cite data breaches as their top concern, and 64 percent are reluctant to use the public Internet to access cloud applications.

Lynda Stadtmueller, Program Director for Cloud Computing Services at Stratecast, a division of Frost & Sullivan, predicts that 2014 will usher in a new attitude as businesses rethink the role of the public cloud in their hybrid IT strategies. (See link below.)

The reason for growing acceptance? The cost-efficiencies, speed, and scalability are becoming even more important as businesses seek new competitive advantages. At the same time, as providers strengthen their offerings, security and performance concerns are fading.

In evaluating options for cloud services in 2014, businesses should consider the nuances of provider offerings. Pricing units, security, backup procedures, and service level agreements differ among providers, as do associated costs. The provider’s data center is essential to the performance and reliability of cloud applications — not to mention security. The network is equally important, so businesses should choose a network-enabled cloud rather than rely on the public Internet.

Is your organization implementing a hybrid IT strategy? Additional considerations are outlined in the report below.
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The public cloud has come a long way since the wild and woolly test/dev environments of a few years ago. As providers introduce clouds that are more reliable, redundant, secure, and network-enabled than in the past, enterprises are taking a fresh look at the public cloud. In 2014, we expect the enterprise-grade public cloud to...