Let's bring this full circle from Part I and II. With regards to the future viabilty of cloud computing .... there are questions to be answered and there are issues to be considered. But there also advantages and opportunities too. You need to understand the whole picture to draw an informed conclusion.
Repeating the questions from Part I:
* With so many companies rushing to announce their development in cloud computing /SaaS/PaaS in 2009, is cloud computing really economically viable in the long-term?
* Will large enterprises and Small and medium businesses actually go in for cloud computing and virtualization?
* What will be the benefits and problems associated with the same?
* Which industries are more likely to be the front-runners in cloud implementation?
I believe as more companies continue to develop and push lots of money into cloud computing technologies .... we will see both large and small businesses sign on. As the supply increases, smaller companies can take advantage as the costs will decrease. For larger companies, they will see other benefits of this such as disaster recovery, uptime requirements, and quicker delivery to worldwide customers.
When looking at the benefits and risks of this technology I think it largely depends on whether the cloud is public or private. Private clouds offer lower risk for companies but at higher cost due to the entity footing the entire bill for the technology, while public clouds such as Amazon offer lower costs but more risks due to private information being saved on public systems. The benefits of both are similar, if done right. Companies will be able to take advantage of better uptime, reduction of downtime due to failures, and improved availability to customers.
Any industry that pushes information to mass communities spread around the world will be the front-runners. These would mostly be media companies such as news outlets, with their main focus of getting information out to the customer the fastest. In an example of the news, the company who can spread a story the fastest will get more readers. So using this technology to get the story to the customers around the world the fastest will have more readers and benefit from cloud computing.
The advantages of this new model are clear and massive. The customer still has full control of their services via various web admin portals, but they now don't need to buy the hardware outright, house it in a rack, pay for the power, the air cooling, the upgrades, the maintenance, the expensive engineers to support them, the replacement of hardware, the list goes on.... They get to pay for what they want, when they need it. Just like water from a tap, or electricity from the socket.