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It’s a Cloud World: Are Hosters Doomed?

Flying around Europe this fall, I met a lot of worried hosters. In the cloud computing era, what kind of future does a relatively small local hoster have? Given that they’re now competing against behemoths like Amazon Web Services and Windows Azure, do they even have a future?

Hosters definitely have a future, but it’s different from their present in some ways. Here are some of their challenges:

But hosters will survive–they also have some advantages. These advantages include:

Should hosters welcome the rise of global-scale cloud platforms? Probably not–they’re strong competitors in some parts of their business. But are the countless local hosters scattered across the world doomed? No. They have some advantages that the big guys don’t. Even in a cloud world, hosters have a significant role to play.

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