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Cloud hosting continues to explode : Expect law firms and legal publishers to use

Barb Darrow (@gigabarb), a Senior Writer at GigaOm, reported yesterday, ‘Amazon posts (what else?) huge S3 storage gains.’

In case anyone thought the Amazon cloud was losing steam, the company published new data showing that the number of objects stored in Amazon’s S3 service soared to 905 billion in the first quarter of 2012, up from 762 billion for the previous quarter.

More than one billion objects are now being added to S3 storage daily.

Amazon Cloud Growth Law Firms

As way of explanation, Amazon S3 (Simple Storage Service) is an online storage web service offered by Amazon Web Services. Amazon launched S3 in the United States in March 2006 and in Europe in November 2007. Law firms, legal publishers, and legal services providers have traditionally used dedicated web servers, their own rack or room of web servers, or their own data center (very rare).  You can see and hold the servers, we have a room of Apple Xserves at LexBlog that have sheet metal value. Today, the scalability, redundancy, and cost make a cloud environment, with Amazon being by far the largest, near impossible to resist. Driven by efficiences and attempting to grab greater market share, Amazon’s prices are only going down. Legal services providers are already using Amazon:

  • Nextpoint provides trial preparation and evidence management for Fortune 100 corporations and AmLaw 100 law firms via its Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) applications utilizing the scalability of the Amazon cloud.
  • LexBlog provides custom blog and social media solutions for over 7,000 lawyers and other professionals utilizing the Amazon cloud. Over two-thirds of the AmLaw 200 law firms’ blogs run on this LexBlog platform.

Expect law firms to follow. Certainly there are concerns of security and privacy with the cloud. Plus you need to have engineers who feel comfortable working with cloud environments. Overtime though, because of the dollars and human resources being thrown at the cloud along with its cost savings, I expect most firms and publishers to use the cloud.