The US federal government is pushing a new cloud computing campaign which could bring a windfall to developers.
The US General Services Administration has launched a new service known as Apps.gov. The online storefront allows managers from other federal agencies and US government organisations to purchase and implement cloud computing services.
The Obama administration launched the site in the hope of lowering the cost of government IT operations. US chief information officer Vivek Kundra said in a posting on the official White House blog that the administration hopes to cut down on its $75bn (£45bn) annual IT expenditure by consolidating data to hosted services.
"Like a utility such as electricity or water, cloud computing allows users to consume only what they need, to grow or shrink their use as their needs change, and to pay only for what they actually use," Kundra wrote.
"With more rapid access to innovative IT solutions, agencies can spend less time and taxpayer dollars on procedural items, and focus more on using technology to achieve their missions."
The new service has received a warm reception from web services vendors. Craigslist founder Craig Newmark described it in a blog post as "really big", while Google Enterprise product management director Matthew Glotzbach lauded the efforts of the White house.
"Everyone benefits from cloud computing, though few stand to benefit more than the government," Glotzbach said in a blog posting.
"The cloud helps agencies at all levels increase productivity, cut costs, keep pace with technology innovation, and become more open and transparent with citizens."
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