What cloud solutions do you recommend?
Are there more to this cloud software list? Skype, Xero, SharePoint, BaseCamp, Asana, Office365, GoogleDrive, Amazon, Rackspace, Salesforce, Worketc, Zen Desk, Desk.com, OneNote, Evernote?
SAASU as alternative to Xero.
Mailchimp for email marketing.
Zoho for entry level CRM capabilities.
Just to name a few...
A lot of cloud services available to the market today can be installed on your own servers so you have full control over the data plus have the advantage of using cloud.
A lot of people will say you have to give up something for convenience. Most common thing people give up is privacy, however in the business world the only thing you need to give up is money, and that is only if you don't want to use the free software. If you want the benefits that come with cloud services then you can simply host them yourself.
Dropbox: can be replaced with Owncloud
Skype: can be replaced with an opensource voip platform
Facebook: I have my own version of Facebook running on my servers for testing and development
Salesforce: Very easily replaced as there are heaps of alternatives. I have an alternative to Salesforce running on my servers, clients can login, see updates on their accounts and interact with me. All on my servers.
Desk.com: Yep there are even alternatives to this lovely piece of software.
The truth is opensource is very popular with the general public but not as popular as it should be with the business sector. The beauty with opensource is the community of developers working around the clock to improve the software. In a lot of cases you will find opensource software more stable and reliable than commercial software.
Microsoft Windows/Linux is a good example. Another more well know opensource project is called Android. Chances are if your not using a iPhone you are using an Android phone, in fact Android has market share over the smart device market. More people are using Android then iPhone, more people use Android devices than any other smart device competitor.
So when it comes to cloud solutions it pays to have a look around at what is available. In most cases if not all cases, an opensource version will be available. Enjoy the benefits of cloud and enjoy retaining ownership of your own data.
Jef Lippiatt ,
Owner at Startup Chucktown
I would also add,
Slack, Dropbox, Box, Trello, Adobe Creative Cloud (Design / Marketing), Invision (Design), Join Me (video conferencing), Mail Chimp. I may think of more later.