When it comes to cloud services you’ll find most people have an Idea of what it is. The thing is, a lot of these ideas are far from the truth. One person even told me that the cloud is a cluster of information floating in the air above our heads. Once you change your perception of the topic, you can find it’s quite a simple concept.
Before the cloud, most people would store their data on their own in-house servers. For example, let’s talk about Bob’s office. His office has 10 PC’s in which they all connect their emails to his server. Back in the day, Bob would send an email from his PC, which would travel through his server to arrive at his PA’s PC telling her to make him a cup of coffee.
Now I’m not sure if you know how much servers cost… but they aren’t cheap. Ranging at around 5 grand. You also need to have a maintenance fee signed to an IT company just like us that could set you back hundreds per month, and you have to replace that server every 5 years! The reason being, if you think about it, that server is always on every minute of every day for 5 years.
Don’t despair, I’ll tell you a super cheap cloud alternative in a minute.
Using the cloud is essentially using an external (and third party) server to store your data through a service, rather than an in-house server. We’ve all most likely used a cloud service before. Think about old email providers such as Hotmail and AOL. This stores your emails on their servers, and you access them through the internet on any PC around the world by simply logging in to your account. Netflix is a cloud service. You stream its data (movies) from their servers via your internet connection. Bob’s server can only be accessed by the Computers in his office though, so if he ever needed data when he wasn’t at work he was in a bit of a pickle.
What if the internet goes down? I’ll be glad I had my own server then.
Well, if the internet was to go down then you would only be able to use your server to email the people in your office. You still need the internet to email clients and people out of house anyway.
What’s the point in the cloud then?
The point of the cloud is essentially for security, (drastic) cost reduction, and to make access to your data available from anywhere you want and on any device, rather than just your work PC like Bob.
Here’s a definition of the cloud:
The cloud is IT services and products delivered through the internet.
Now, let’s talk about a cheaper alternative to Joes email problems. We at Ingenio Technologies could make a lot of money by keep recommending servers for your emails, but we have strong integrity and want the best for our clients – we recognise that the cloud is coming.
As technology evolves, so does the demand for greater flexibility.
You don’t need an expensive in-house server to use emails, because when you use Office 365, you are using Microsoft servers. All your calendar and emails are stored on these servers and you access them through the internet. This means you can log into your account anywhere around the world and access your files. This also means you can do this on any device. You can ‘sync’ your contacts to your phone too.
The benefit of using a cloud service like Office 365 is not just for dramatic cost reduction, but also for increased security. The Microsoft servers Bob now uses for his emails are heavily protected, guarded and secure. That’s a bit more reassuring for Bob as he’s come to realise anyone could have broken into his office to access his server. When the data is sent over the internet from the server to his PC (or the other way around), the information is encrypted, ensuring its safety over the internet.
The problem with cloud services like Pop 3
What’s different to the way Pop 3 works rather than Office 365 is rather than accessing your emails from external servers, Pop 3 cuts your emails from their servers and paste’s it into your email when you open it.
This means if you were to open an important email from your work PC, and later on when you get home you need to go over it again, you won’t be able to see this email because it has been cut from the server and pasted into your computers work inbox. The email is now non-existing on the server and only exists on your work PC.
There is a way to make it so Pop 3 doesn’t delete the email off its server once you’ve collected it onto one PC however, but the problem with this is Pop 3 doesn’t know if you’ve read it or not, as only your PC can tell this not the server. This would mean every time you were to open your emails on a different device, those emails would always be sent again and would be marked as ‘unread’. This could potentially flood your inbox.
In conclusion, Ingenio Technologies believe and trusts that Office 365 is the best email cloud service to use for small to medium businesses on the market right now. It has so much more useful features we use on a day to day basis that we haven’t mentioned in this blog. If you want to find out more of its features such as syncing calendars with your colleagues and easily marking important tasks then we would be more than happy to explain it to you. Feel free to call us on 01273 806211. We recommend Office 365 for the most efficient and optimum use of office work. Here’s a short review we had recently about Office 365:
“I use office 365 on a daily basis now, and have a large amount of OneDrive space. This is extremely important to drive my business forwards. Thanks Simon, James and the rest of the team!”