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The crowded cloud marketplace

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There is now a huge range of cloud computing providers to choose from and it is quite a task to list and categorize these providers. Figure 5.1 provides a visual map of example cloud vendors that were around in 2010, which was inspired by Peter Laird’s ‘Cloud Vendor Taxonomy, May 2009’ (Laird, 2009). The figure serves only to illustrate the breadth and depth of the cloud computing market; it is by no means comprehensive, nor does it represent a completely accurate indication of which providers were most popular at the time. Fortunately, however, there are a number of web directories to help us find providers of Software, Platform and Infrastructure as a service.

How to find SaaS providers

If Software as a Service (SaaS) looks like the right option for you then there is an independent directory of SaaS providers
at http://www.saas-showplace.com/ where you can search for providers by industry sector or application category – see Figure 5.2. Other online directories include GetApp.com (http://www.getapp.com/) and SaaS Directory (http://www.saasdir.com/). And last, but not least, there is the Cloudbook.net directory of application (SaaS) providers
(http://www.cloudbook.net/products-applications), which is broken down into the following functional categories:

  • Collaboration ;
  • Sales ;
  • Data & Analytics ;

example cloud providers

  • Service & Support ;
  • Operations;
  • Office & Communications ;
  • Marketing ;
  • Financial ;
  • Human Resources ;
  • Vertical.

SaaS ShowPlace

How to find PaaS providers

There are directories of Platform as a Service vendors on Cloudbook at http://www.cloudbook.net/products-platform where they list providers under the following subcategories:

  • Horizontal Development;
  • Vertical Development ;
  • Media Platforms ;
  • Cloud Services Management;
  • Middleware & Applications ;
  • Data Integration;
  • Test Environments.

How to find IaaS providers

The Cloudbook website also lists Infrastructure as a Service providers in its directory of cloud products and services
under the category of ‘Compute & Storage’, which has the following subcategories.

  • Infrastructure as a Service ;
  • Backup & Disaster Recovery ;
  • Managed Hosting ;
  • Infrastructure Software ;
  • Physical Cloud Resources ;
  • Security Resources;
  • Operations Software & Services .

Building your own cloud

Cloudbook.net is also a useful resource if your business is considering building its own cloud and, perhaps, even becoming a cloud computing provider. Firstly, as the name of the website suggests, there is a free book called Cloud:
Seven Clear Business Models that is available to read online. Secondly, unless your business is an established enterprise, and maybe even then, you will need a data centre, network connectivity and perhaps some help from third parties. At http://www.cloudbook.net/directories/productsservices- directory Cloudbook provides lists of ‘cloud enablers’, including consultants, system integrators and analysts; co-location service providers; and network service providers. You may not be able to find a local provider in this directory but you will gain an understanding of the kinds of services offered.

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