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Report: Cloud revolution could be "as big as computing itself"

The cloud revolution could be as big as that created by the impact of data processing on business itself, industry experts have claimed.

A report by the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), the research and analysis division of the Economist Group, goes well beyond the claim that cloud is a replacement for older computing platforms - and is in reality completely changing business practices.

According to the research, the growing use of cloud will continue to “disrupt markets, spawn new business models and revolutionise information sharing and business management for years to come.”

The Impact of Cloud claims that cloud computing is already making “huge waves” in both enterprise IT and people’s everyday lives, as consumers use services such as iCloud, Google Drive and Dropbox to change the way they handle their digital content.

Wide variety of people contribute to report

Thinkers who contributed to the analysis include Professor Ian Bitterlin of the Green Grid Association, Dr Jonathan Liebenau of London School of Economics, Reed technology director Mark Ridley, Dr James Mitchell of Strategic Blue and Dr Tua Huomo of the European Institute of Innovation and Technology.

The group set out to fully explore the impact of cloud, from enterprise IT to the economy and the environment - exploring areas such as customer delivering, pricing, energy use and business development.

The conclusion? “The impact of cloud computing has barely begun,” says the report - adding that cloud is becoming the preferred delivery option for digital tech, no longer a niche one.

In response, “Executives should also pay close attention to how cloud computing is enabling new business models, transforming business process, changing market dynamics and, in some cases, creating new markets together,” the study warns.

“It is here that the true revolutionary impact lies,” it concludes.