The cloud storage and collaboration space is more competitive than ever before. Google recently rolled out its new cloud-based document and storage solution and faces competition not just from cloud companies such as Box and Dropbox, but from Apple, Microsoft and Amazon as well. Here’s a brief comparison of the big players:

Amazon Cloud Drive: 

  • Storage: 5GB free (purchases from the Amazon MP3 Store don’t count towards storage limit)
  • Mobile Integration: Cloud Player for Android, no official iOS app
  • Desktop Integration: Amazon MP3 Uploader/Downloader for music
  • Pricing: $1 a gigabyte per year
  • Collaborative Editing: No
  • File Size Limitations: 2GB


  • Storage: 5GB free, 20GB is $40 a year, 50GB is $100 a year
  • Mobile Integration: Built into iOS 5
  • Desktop Integration: Mac OS X 10.7.x and Windows 7
  • Pricing: $40/$100 a year
  • Collaborative Editing: No
  • File Size Limitations: No


  • Storage: 5GB free, up to 50GB for personal accounts, 1TB for business and unlimited for eneterprise
  • Mobile Integration: iOS, Android, and BlackBerry
  • Desktop Integration: Mac, Windows, web
  • Pricing: Personal accounts start at $9.99 a month for 25GB, business plans start at $15 a month (at least 3 users required)
  • Collaborative Editing: Yes, more robust editing for business accounts
  • File Size Limitations: 25MB – 100MB for free accounts, up to 2GB for business accounts, up to 2GB for business accounts


  • Storage: 2GB free and 500MB per referral, paid plans up to 100GB
  • Mobile Integration: Android, iOS, BlackBerry
  • Desktop Integration: Windows, Mac, Linux, web
  • Pricing: $100 a year for 50GB, $200 a year for 100GB
  • Collaborative Editing: No, but many cloud document services integrate with Dropbox
  • File Size Limitations: None for desktop, 300MB for web uploads

Microsoft SkyDrive:

  • Storage: 7GB free (25GB for users who signed up before April 22, 2012), Up to 100GB
  • Mobile Integration: Official apps for Windows Phone 7 and iOS, unofficial Android apps, mobile web access
  • Desktop Integration: Windows, Mac and web
  • Pricing: Additional storage available for $0.50 a gigabyte, 100GB of additional storage is $50 a year.
  • Collaborative Editing: Yes, with Office Live Web Apps
  • File Size Limitations: 2GB (300 megabytes for web uploads)

Google Drive:

  • Storage: 5GB free, up to 16TB
  • Mobile Integration: Android, iOS (coming soon)
  • Desktop Integration: Windows, Mac, web
  • Pricing: $30 a year for 25GB, $60 a year for $100GB
  • Collaborative Editing: Yes with Google Docs
  • File Size Limitations: 10GB

SAP moves into database space

Posted by David / Category: general, market

“Enterprise software player SAP has unveiled aggressive plans to grow its presence in the database software and mobile apps markets…” read the full post on siliconrepublic.



Posted by David / Category: market, tips

Talentopoly is a community for programmers, designers, developers, and IT professionals. The site provides a great platform for sharing resources, links, code samples, or networking online. The elevator pitch: “where talented people go to share their best links. No longer do you have to manage lists on Twitter, likes on Facebook or bookmarking in your browser. Talentopoly is about sharing information…” Read a review about talentopoly on


Cloud projects miss their mark

Posted by Steffanie / Category: market, trends

A great majority of the worldwide companies has identified the cloud as an effective medium to reduce their costs. However, after the implementation, disillusionment often follows.

Cloud computing is fundamentally changing the IT and the delivery methods of IT-services. The first step into the cloud is the virtualisation – the technical base. A recent study showed that virtualisation projects are already realised extensively and that expected goals like more efficiency and a better scalability can mostly be reached. The survey by Symantec among 3,700 companies worldwide also proved that a lot of cloud projects end up with results far away from the expectations.

Companies have the most of experience with server virtualisation – the technology is used by 45 percent. Additionally, 75 percent of the companies think about deploying private and hybrid clouds.

By taking a look at the expectations and the actual results of virtualisation- and cloud-implementations, you can see that there are some large differences between them: projects with server-virtualisation were the most successful, with a averaged lack of four percent between goal and result. The respondents had hoped for a higher scalability and lower running and investigation costs from the virtualisation technology. With similarly high expectations, cloud projects disappointed throughout: on an average, half of the expectations were not reached. The difference at the initialisation of extra resources is striking, too. While 76 percent of the respondents hoped for an easement of their workload by cloud technologies, better services could only be reached by 37 percent.

Now it´s your turn: What do you think would be the reasons for these circumstances? We are looking forward to a lot of comments.

Found at:


In 2010, 83 percent of the German enterprises were affected by data loss. Most common was customer data loss.

That is the result of the study “Understanding Security Complexity in 21st Century IT Environments” by the security service provider “Check Point Software Technologies” and the market research company “Ponemon”.

Worldwide, more than three quarters of the companies affected
At least 77 percent of the surveyed organisations in the USA, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Japan were concerned by the data loss.

In German companies, the following data was pertained most commonly:

  1. customer information and generic consumer data (both about 50%)
  2. other intellectual property, e.g. source codes (29 percent)
  3. employee data (28 percent)
  4. business plans or strategies (20 percent)

According to the respondents, the main reasons for the data loss were stealing of IT equipment or the simple, unintended loss of it.

Other causes were network attacks, unsecured mobile terminals, web 2.0 and file-sharing-appliances – and of course the accidental email-dispatch to a wrong receiver.

The companies do not think that their employees handle their data carefully enough: The respondents said that, on average, not even half of their employees have the awareness to think about terms like data security, compliance or security-guidelines.

The solution: Inform your staff and create transparent processes

The term of data security always has to rank first on the priority list of all IT-security officers, Jörg Kurowski from “Check Point Software Technologies” opines. But if one takes a look at the causes of data loss, it becomes clear that the biggest part of the incidents happen unintentionally. Companies should rely on a stronger awareness and a stronger involvement of their employees and at the same time establish associated processes in order to not just recognize the data loss, but to avoid it pro-actively. Like this, databases will become more transparent and easier to control, Kurowski continues.



A survey of the Center for european economic research (ZEW) in cooperation with Creditreform came to find that e-commerce is used rather for buying purposes than for sales. The survey concentrated on the association for sourcing of payment in advance.

Usually the term e-commerce refers to the selling and buying processes that are conducted via the internet.

The imbalance of selling and buying processes is especially apparent in the software and IT sector:

Nearly 64% of the companies working in the IT- and software sector say that they have ordered products and services on the internet last year. In contrast to that just 29% of these companies sold their products or services online. Mirna Sarbu, scientist at the ZEW announces: “The companies of the software- and IT-service branch are with 81% leading in buying via the internet.”

Considering the usage of e-commerce for selling products, providers of telecommunication services are leading. Nearly 58% of these corporations offer opportunities for their customers to buy their products online.

Generally the e-commerce processes peaked out in 2010. Market-leading companies like amazon, facebook, google or ebay as well as younger online-shops like shape the online trading.

What experiences have you made regarding e-commerce? Feel free to leave a reply!

Based on:


Skills shortage has been in the news for quite some time now. The VDI (Verband Deutscher Ingenieure – association of german engineers) has recently conducted a survey questioning 450 experts from various fields in the IT sector and came to the conclusion that the skills shortage in the IT sector is viewed as a serious problem.

According to the annual survey the biggest lack of experts is found in the field of software development, followed by IT-project management, IT-security, Consulting and Support. The hardware sector is not facing serious shortages in human ressources.

So what is done to counteract these growing shortages, that are thought to increase even further until 2015: Development programmes for young talents are essential on the long run. By now companies are already finding ways to solve the problem e.g. by hiring specialised staff from abroad, by providing professional training and development for their employees or by outsourcing of services.

Eventhough the skills shortage is likely to exacerbate over the next years, 2/3 of the respondents view the location of  Germany in terms of business and industry as good or very good.

The trend of skills shortage might be problematic for some, but especially for freelancing experts it might also bring full order books. Even better if those freelancers are specialised in the fields that are having a great potential for growth: cloud computing, IT-security, embedded systems and broadband infrastructure.

Based on VDI:


Fair wages and a decisive, unanimous project management are the main motivational factors for IT freelancers, so far the results of a survey of IT job boards among 99 IT professionals.

Additionally IT professionals tend to be more motivated at the end of a project than at the beginning. The reason for this is the prospect of the feeling of satisfaction, that occurs when completing a project. For 93% of the respondents, productivity means to produce as much as possible and not to finalize one thing that one can show off in front of the chef.

Another motivational factor is money (important for 46%). So is time pressures of colleagues who are waiting for results (57%). An early finishing time seems to be rather unimportant and was only mentioned by 16% of the respondents as a motivational support.

Many IT experts stated that writing to-do lists on a daily basis is very helpful to them. With those lists you would have a little success in every evening, you would have achieved something and feel more motivated..

The main motivational killers are ambiguous instructions according to 85 percent of the respondents.

However, loud noises or simply a bad mood can harm the motivation. Distractions such as reading e-mails or checking the latest posts in social networks slow down as well. Short breaks on the other hand should not be despised: Seventy-five percent of the respondents said that after a small break they would feel much more productive than before.

We are curious to hear your view on this study. What motivates you most?



According to the latest study of Lünendonk the freelance IT business is booming.
But instead of IT departments, IT-experts are booked by buying departments more often.

The crisis is over. The German economy grew by an average of 3.7 percent in 2010. Even for projects that were suspended during the crisis money seems to flow again.

Just good news for IT freelancers: Internal IT departments are overstrained and companies are increasingly reliant on external support. Compared to 2009, the demand for IT professionals increased by 11.5 percent in 2010.

The development over the last 3 years:

Due to Lünendonk there were a high number of project requests in 2008. The crisis in 2009, made the number of project requests drop. However, in 2010 the industry experienced a boom of project requests for IT professionals again.
Until 2015, experts for the IT freelance market expect an equally high, annual market growth of over 17 percent! For 2015 until 2020 an average growth of about 14 percent per year is expected.

Three ordering fields: the IT areas, the buying departments and other specific departments

The purchasing department is not only discussing charges. Increasingly they are the ones who are contacting the recruitment agencies of freelancers directly: 33.5 percent of the project requests are already made directly by the purchasing department.
Next to the IT and the buying department the individual departments already rank third when it comes to booking IT freelancers – with 19.2 percent.

Of course we would like to hear your experiences. What was the most interesting department you have worked for?


Highest investments in which IT projects?

Posted by Steffanie / Category: market

A study of PAC (Pierre Audoin Consultants)

More and more German companies rely on the Business Efficiency of IT technologies. The main factors here are Product Data Management (PDM), Product Lifecycle Management (PLM), Business Intelligence (BI) and Customer Relationship Management (CRM).

According to PAC, the use of IT experts could be crucial for the recovery or non-recovery of a company. Particularly affected by the economic crisis, the industry is now looking for new IT solutions. Support to reduce costs is now required more than ever. On one hand, the expenditure for IT employees is declining and on the other hand the business efficiency should be improved by IT tools.
Direct costs should be cut down by consolidating and standardizing the IT environment. In addition, the companies intend to rely more on outsourcing in the future. In order to further reduce costs, new contracts such as “pay-per-use” in which flexible pricing models are established should be made.

The PAC says that optimizing the business efficiency is particularly important at the product development stage. PLM and PDM are the appropriate fields. Using the Manufacturing Execution Systems (MES), the manufacturing process should be designed more economical.
However, not only during the development process but also at sales and after-sales IT solutions are important. It is gaining in importance in the areas of CRM, BI and service management. From these findings, one is able to make better decisions in operational and strategic planning.

The investment priorities are different in every industry

In the automotive industry, for example, CRM, After-Sales, BI, PLM and collaboration are needed the most. In the aerospace and defense industry however it is more important to have an efficient product development and already adopted solutions should be harmonized. Building tools in the repair and maintenance area and the integration of applications with ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) are common tasks of the IT employees.
Overall CRM, PLM and supply chain management (SCM) become increasingly important.

A detailed overview of the individual industries can be found directly in the study of PAC: Manufacturing Industry Germany 2010