Investing in the Cloud

Autodesk and Microsoft Increasing Cloud-Related R & D Spending

After tightening their belts in 2009 and 2010, big-name software companies like Microsoft, Autodesk, Intuit, and EMC are all reporting increased R & D spending for 2011 and into 2012.

So far, the biggest R & D spender is Autodesk.  Autodesk, an engineering and design software developer, has a reputation for investing heavily in research and development.  The company has recently announced plans to shift its R & D spending to focus primarily on the cloud.  A spokesperson for Autodesk says that the company expects most of its core products to be available via cloud within the next three years.  The company is already using the cloud to deliver several web-based products and serivces.  Autodesk is also using the cloud for its smartphone apps, including the popular SketchBook app, which is available for the iPad, iPhone, and Android.

Autodesk isn’t the only developer investing in the cloud, though.  Microsoft, Intuit, and EMC are all investing in the transition to cloud-based products. In fact, software and Internet companies are expected to increase their research spending more than seven percent, according to a 2010 report by the nonprofit Battelle Memorial Institute and R&D Magazine.

Why is this important?  I think this is just one more indication that the cloud is here to stay.

What do you think about the shift toward cloud-based software?  Is your organization planning to transition in the next few years, or are you taking a wait-and-see approach?  What do you see as the major benefits of the cloud?

Leave a comment and let me know what you think.

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