Why you won’t hear about the cloud three years from now

Today, the term “cloud” seems to permeate every discussion and every bit of writing on the subject of contact center and business communications. It is the fastest growing segment of those industries by a long shot. Well-respected analyst firm, DMG Research, recently published in their comprehensive 433 page Cloud-Based Contact Center Infrastructure Market Report, that the cloud contact center market will grow 45% in 2012. That compares with single digit growth for its premise-based counterparts. If you look just at Interactive Intelligence as an example, our cloud based contact center business has been the fastest growing segment of our business for the past two plus years. Okay, so I’ve made my introductory point – the cloud is red hot.

Now go back to the title of the post – “Why you won’t hear about the cloud three years from now.” That title doesn’t seem to jive with my first paragraph text, now does it? But here’s an analogy that hopefully helps. Most remember when DTMF was first introduced and began to replace rotary dial telephones. Outside the telecommunications industry, DTMF wasn’t a well-known term. Instead, the world referred to it as “touch tone.” And the common phrase we heard for years in auto-attendant greetings was, “press one on your touch tone phone.” Now when was the last time you heard a reference to touch tone? Quite a while is my guess. The reason is that touch tone is now the norm, so there is no reason to call it out in a phrase any longer. Okay, so back to the relationship to the title of the post… same idea. With the dramatic shift toward the cloud, it will be the norm relative to how business communications, and even the broader IT applications, are consumed. The cloud will be the assumed deployment method. And if that is the case, the term will be dropped from our vocabulary. So the term goes away because of the dominance of the cloud, not because of the lack of it. That’s the magnitude of the shift the market is going through.

What are your company’s plans for moving to the cloud? Please comment and share your thoughts.

Joe Staples – CMO and cloud surfer