Although cloud computing has been talked about for at the past decade and a half, it wasn’t until last year that cloud platforms were introduced to consumers en masse by companies like Amazon, Google and of course, Apple each with their respective cloud services. As the cloud catches on and begins to spread, we’re beginning to see more products that facilitate the lofty ideas of the cloud popping up on the Apple Store and Android Market.
The cloud has always been based on the promise of creating accessibility on the web, and a new app from Rackspace adds a little weight to that promise. The cloud app was recently released to the masses and gives users virtual access to their Rackspace servers through an iOS device. (you can download the cloud from here)
You can do standard things like access files hosted on your cloud server through your iPhone, but the app also gives you access to more granular functions like creating and deleting servers on the cloud and resizing or rebooting those servers of the fly. The app also allows you to make changes to user access and password information should you need to address a login crisis. Need to optimize the server but can’t make it into the office? You can configure your servers remotely with an SSH client and get everything up to speed. This app is a literal server management system in your pocket.
Of course, one of the selling points of the cloud is the ability to balance loads by distributing resources throughout the server network to execute tasks faster. The cloud usually does that automatically and the cloud app lets you remotely create, delete or otherwise tinker with your cloud load balancers.
For those who don’t need remote control over tiny facets of their servers, the cloud app also handles basic protocols like accessing and managing files you have stored in the cloud. You can upload content (i.e. photos, videos, etc.) directly from your iPhone or iPad 2 to the cloud through the app as well. We do live in a sharing age, so after uploading the system gives you a link to both Twitter and Safari so you can immediately view and publicize created content on the web.
Another area where the app wins is its interface. Some iOS apps can be shrunken versions of their web app counterparts but the Cloud app is optimized for iOS and so shares in its clean design and usability. The UI is intuitive, simple to navigate, and makes managing the myriad minutiae of cloud servers look deceptively easy. If you’re already a client of Rackspace hosting services, the cloud app adds a layer of security and quite a bit of functionality to the existing platform.
The steady rise of the smartphones and tablets has led to growth in the mobile Internet, and its growth that is moving incredibly fast. Cloud apps are available at the consumer and enterprise level and for the latter category, this Cloud app pulls the disparate pieces of server management and consumer behavior and rolls it into this handy application.