Apps.gov Arrives

Cloud services has arrived as a G2G platform thanks for GSA and the folks at OMB's e-Gov office. Apps.gov allows agencies to purchase "business apps", "productivity apps", "cloud IT services", and "social media apps" straight from GSA.

For instance, the social media apps section allows agencies to access the social media apps that have a signed relationship with GSA. Apps such as AddThis, Socrata, SlideShare, and Facebook can be accessed for use within an agency. This approach will save time and money in that agencies will not have to navigate the legal waters of social media use on their own. GSA has navigated these waters and makes these apps available for immediate use.

Besides social media apps, the big item gaining attention is the "cloud IT services" section of the Apps.gov site. Although these services are "coming soon", it is exciting to see the service offerings that will be offered as commodities: cloud storage, software development, virtual machines, and web hosting.

All of this will certainly change the way that these services are procured. Additionally, if this breaks down the procurement barriers for these services, there could be a quick exodus of these services being offered within agencies but rather agencies might be providing policy and/or guidance to point programs to these commodity environments.