In California, Elon Musk dreams of retiring to Mars, perfecting high speed Hyperloop travel pods, reroofing the world with solar tiles and digging a tunnel to who knows where beneath his SpaceX HQ.
Closer to home, autonomous vehicles are already being tested on some UK roads. The internet of things is taking shape, linking infrastructure, devices and pinging information from pillar to post. Smartphones are replacing our wallets and we’ll soon travel the world without leaving our armchair thanks to our virtual reality devices.
From the way we relax to how we travel, communicate, run our business and do our banking, virtually every area of our lives is touched by advances in technology.
No wonder today’s rapidly evolving technology become known as the fourth industrial revolution.
Vive la rèvolution
Industrial revolutions tend to involve clunking great steam engines, electricity and mass production, and computers in place of typewriters and ledgers. What’s different about this particular revolution, is that there’s really not a lot to see.
Instead most of the action is relatively ethereal and fleeting – like a cloud.
Indeed, it is cloud technology that’s at the very core of this industrial transformation.
Many smart businesses have already embraced its benefits, tapping into the power of Google Cloud Platform virtual machines when they need extra capacity to develop complex programmes, to create new apps and websites, to manage their day to day business on as big or small a scale as they want and to analyse customer trends.
It’s clearly working: big brand names from Netflix to Spotify are cloud-based, running their entire background tech using cloud systems they ‘hire’ from the big name platform suppliers.
But the cloud’s potential goes far deeper than that.
In the future, the power of the cloud will infiltrate virtually every element of our lives and completely transform the world of business.
What’s happening today?
There’s no room for complacency. The cloud has enabled innovative start-up businesses – agitators and disruptors – to eye up your traditional marketplace, turning the way your product or service is delivered, on its head.
Little wonder the power of the cloud has been likened to the wheel, the light bulb and the printing press in its potential to completely overhaul how we all live and work.
Workplaces will need faster data, but will enjoy smaller overheads as staff work from home using the cloud.
Artificial intelligence, machine learning and big data – all elements of cloud computing – have already changed the world. Consumers already expect instant access to products and services. Businesses which fail to keep up with their demands may well be doomed.
At the same time those that adopt and use the cloud effectively, will be armed with real time tools to influence their customers’ choices, will operate more efficiently, be more agile in their response to trends and have access to a wealth of big data that provides vital insights and opportunities.
Far from a fleeting business trend, the cloud’s impact on commerce and industry is here to stay. Just look at Snapchat which handles 7bn videos every day, and has just pledged to spend $2bn over the next five years consolidating its presence with Google Cloud.
Cloud Technology Solutions is Google’s only cloud Premier Partner in Scotland. You can find out how the power of the cloud can be used by businesses of all sizes at their events across Scotland. Click here to register your place.