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Cloud 2.0: The SaaS Opportunities

PaaS offerings acting as middleware will gain adoption quickly

One of the most powerful as well as practical ways to demonstrate the trend of Cloud 2.0 and how it will re-invent IT areas like CRM, is to consider the SaaS opportunities this presents.

Greenfield Applications First

In summary this is best captured from the Canadian E-Health Cloud strategy, where it calls for:

“We expect greenfield implementations to dominate in the near term, with the exception that some productivity applications such as office software, email, ERP and supply chain management will be introduced in public cloud implementations. However, even in these cases, this will be less a porting of existing systems to cloud-based provisioning than replacement of these capabilities locally with cloud-based services.”

  • Cloud and Mobile Computing Integrate – Acquiring cloud services to provision and manage mobile applications and devices.
  • Cloud and Social Networking will Experiment – Provisioning of social networking applications for health through cloud-based services will emerge, experimental initially but with potential for a ‘killer app’.
  • Niche Middleware will Expand Rapidly – PaaS offerings acting as middleware will gain adoption quickly.
  • In short this is a complete suite of software that i) connects to and enables community with the social media world, and ii) interfaces this to back-end legacy systems.

    GovCloud 2.0

    The big opportunity for Cloud Providers is that much of this software is fairly generic and would be equally valued for the same functions in other areas of the public sector like Municipal Governments.

    With a common theme of ‘citizen empowerment through online communities’ then hosted web software that provides social media forums, document co-authoring, e-petitions and e-voting and so forth will find a ready market in all of these different vertical sectors, where it can be further tailored.

    For example last year I reviewed this RFP for building a ‘Community Cloud’ for hospitals to operate a shared services model running Microsoft Sharepoint and Dynamics on a VMware vSphere private Cloud, to implement the eHealth Ontario eReferral process functionality.

    At the time of this RFP it also built in requests for future developments that the Infoway strategy document now articulates in detail, specifically the Federated Identity & Consent Management capability.

    This would enable the Sharepoint app to be better integrated with the IT environments of the staff involved in the eReferral process.

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