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Microsoft, University of Nairobi release cloud computing study findings

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University of Nairobi with the support of Microsoft and ICT Authority, has released a baseline survey on cloud computing and its impact in Kenya.

The aim of this research project is to engage stakeholders in Kenya to understand the status of cloud computing and it’s supporting technologies.

The study has established that there is relatively low awareness of cloud computing policy framework in Kenya by respondents and that government will need to fast track the enactment of key policies addressing cyber security, data protection and privacy in order to increase confidence in the adoption of cloud services in the country.

Speaking during the event, Kunle Awosika, Microsoft Country Manager noted that an increasing number of companies and government organizations are turning to cloud services to increase the productivity of their workforce.

“We are seeing widespread adoption of cloud-based email services and productivity tools like Office 365, which enable “always-on” access to emails and files from virtually anywhere. Businesses are also running CRM, HR, accounting and custom enterprise applications in the cloud.Cloud computing can benefit governments in three areas:  increasing national competitiveness, enhancing citizen services and driving down costs.”

90% of the respondents thought the cloud services market were ready but there are a lot of misunderstandings about the technology. Some technical skills are seriously lacking.

The research was unveiled by Ministry of ICT Principal Secretary Joseph Tiampati represented by Brown Otunga Deputy Principal Secretary who said the government would champion the adoption of cloud computing by organizations.

“By adopting the cloud, the government would set pace for a better uptake by the private sector. By providing services through the cloud, the it is likely to improve overall quality of service delivery”, said Tiampati,

The research was done by the University of Nairobi – School of Computing and Informatics, under the leadership of its faculty Prof. Timothy Waema and Dr. Tonny Omwansa.

Despite cloud computing being a few years old in Kenya, numerous organizations have adopted the technology. Private cloud is more popular than public cloud. 57% of the research respondents indicated they adopted cloud technology in either 2010 or 2011. More organizations utilized pure private cloud (39%) compared to utilizing a public cloud (22%).

Cloud computing is changing not just our personal lives, but the world of work as well. From a global scenario, various organizations like Facebook holds data for over 800 million users on the cloud, the same for Skype with 663 million users and 200 million files saved daily on Dropbox.

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