Cloud computing is exploding worldwide. Consider the following facts:
- The world’s biggest datacenters occupy more than 1 million square feet, enough to house 17 football fields.
- 5.75 million new servers are installed annually just for online services.
- 36 percent of all data centers use cloud computing.
- Cloud users report saving 21percent on applications moved to the cloud.
The primary impediments to the adoption of cloud computing, in order of importance to consumers of cloud services, are: security, interoperability, vendor lock-in, regulatory compliance, reliability, complexity, privacy and pricing. These concerns raise contract drafting issues for cloud computing contracts. Part 1 will cover security, interoperability and vendor lock-in. Part 2 will address the remaining issues.
Interoperability refers to the ability of the cloud service to interact with other services. There are two aspects of interoperability for cloud computing: interoperability within a single cloud (vertical interoperability) and interoperability between clouds (horizontal interoperability). Interoperability within a single cloud is how the cloud software integrates with other applications or devices that the customer uses. Interoperability between clouds refers to the ability of the customer to transfer data to or switch to another cloud provider.