Everywhere we look these days things seem to be cloud based. What does this really mean? Many companies give you free space on the cloud to store files such as photos. It seems the idea is that you get a small amount of storage for free and are then enticed to purchase more space as you need it.

Some companies use the cloud as a transportation method. If you have ever had an issue moving larger files, there are many companies that will do this for you. There are even hard drives that will provide your own personal cloud around the home or office enabling you to move and view data easily. The cloud will remain part of our lives, much of it remaining invisible.

The cloud is also influencing us on-site and in the office. Some epos companies are utilising technologies to deliver data and information and using the cloud to store information securely.

CBE, for example, utilises the cleverness of cloud-based computing to deliver parts of its innovative head office solutions.

From your perspective cloud-based solutions will mean better access, any time and wherever you are.

Just take a look around your neighbourhood electrical store these days to see the plethora of gadgets, widgets and worthwhile tools that are becoming a part of our lives.

Toys that you can programme via a smart phone that will drive spheres around the floor to your design and innumerable smart watch devices that can measure everything from heart rate to temperature, speed of walking, calorie usage and weight burn.

Our lives will change if we let them, you can even buy a programmable light bulb only £70 each. So, I leave you to decide which gadget and widget to buy.

The most amazing thing is the seeming speed of production of these new products. I guess technology has just reached the point where all of these ideas are now turning into reality. I like the latest thermostats that can be programmed from your smart phone.

One pos vendor recently announced that it was now offering telephone top-ups through its pos, something CBE has been offering for over six years. Horses for courses.

Now, of course, as busy retailers you have another dimension to consider when specifying your generation system, can the system keep pace with the technology?