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The outage is an indictment not just of Google's services but of the general proposition that businesses can rely on the cloud, according to blogger Larry Dignan. In recent weeks, Apple's MobileMe service proved to be a disaster and Amazon's S3 storage gird suffered substantial problems. "These growing pains, which are more evident each day that we rely more on service-based software efforts, indicate that you can't really trust the cloud at this juncture. It's too early and providers are learning as they go," Dignan wrote.
While the idea of outsourcing IT to Google is appealing, the reality is that companies -- even very small companies -- need redundant systems. "Given that our company relies on Google's Gmail and GTalk service, our operations came to a standstill this afternoon," blogger Om Malik wrote on his site. "We aren't a large company, but the losses are very real, especially in productivity."