Edging Toward the Cloud Future

Amy Larsen DeCarlo
Amy Larsen DeCarlo

Summary Bullets:

  • While the majority of public and private sector organizations are employing cloud services to support at least a percentage of their IT needs, more conventional approaches to technology still dominate.
  • Although questions about service stability, security, and compliance remain, maturing delivery models and some promising partnerships could signify the start of a more productive phase in cloud computing.

It is the season to take stock of the year gone by and look forward to the one ahead, trying to anticipate what is on the horizon.  With respect to the cloud, we have seen both forward momentum and some unfortunate backsliding.  Arguments and challenges remain around all of the issues that have been the steepest obstacles to entry: stability, security, compliance, complexity, and to some extent, cost.  Outages, breaches, the lack of common standards for effective security, and hesitation over the difficulty and expense of migrating legacy application workloads into an on-demand environment are keeping some organizations on the sidelines – at least for now.  Continue reading “Edging Toward the Cloud Future”

Brokering a Better Cloud Position for the Enterprise

Amy Larsen DeCarlo
Amy Larsen DeCarlo

Summary Bullets:

  • With the emphasis on cost competitiveness and transparency, distinguishing features can quickly fall away in the cloud.
  • Some providers respond by stepping up to strategic roles as chief advocates for their clients, aggregating services and supplying mechanisms to streamline provisioning and management.

In an environment where providers trumpet similar pricing models and comparable feature sets based on technology from common vendors, it can be hard to distinguish one cloud service from another. Enterprise IT decision-makers tend to select providers that have earned their trust through work in other projects. However, there is still room for rival providers to compete for new accounts by offering a compelling solution. The most savvy of these service providers recognize that a change as inherently complex a change as the move to the cloud presents opportunities for them to position themselves as  strategic partners in guiding clients through this transition. Continue reading “Brokering a Better Cloud Position for the Enterprise”

Beware the Cloud Service Provider Shell Game

Jerry Caron
Jerry Caron

Summary Bullets:

  • Cloud services imply a new type of sales and support ecosystem that is still very complex and relatively unstable at the moment
  • This should not put buyers off, and should be welcomed—but all customary, cautionary warnings apply

The dynamics of cloud services have caused a fair bit of healthy upheaval in the way technology and software suppliers deliver and support their goods. In fact, that would be an understatement. Beyond the obvious difference between a network-based infrastructure or a software service versus goods sold or licensed for installation on-premise, there is a fundamental shift in the go-to-market plan for suppliers that takes the notion of so-called co-opetition to an entirely different level. Continue reading “Beware the Cloud Service Provider Shell Game”

Beware of Public Clouds Bearing Too Many Gifts

B. Shimmin
B. Shimmin

Summary Bullets:

  • Public cloud services break the typical 18 month product revision cycle down into smaller, more rapid releases, a practice that varies widely among vendors in terms of frequency, focus (bugs vs. new features) and flexibility.
  • To avoid heavy deployment, training and support issues stemming from quick revision cycles, customers must demand options typically found in on-premises software.

Last week brought an animated and often heated blow up between Oracle’s Larry Ellison and Salesforce.com’s Marc Benioff over the best way to deliver a public cloud offering. The argument, which played out publicly across keynotes given by both men during Oracle’s OpenWorld 2011 conference in San Francisco, centered upon whether or not Salesforce.com’s cloud was indeed open and whether or not Oracle’s newly launched Public Cloud platform was in fact a public cloud. Such a public debate can only serve to ultimately make things easier for enterprise IT departments by exposing many of the often overlooked issues associated with cloud-borne software such as partial multitenancy or API-induced data siloing. But to this analyst’s mind, the debate missed what is the biggest hidden ‘gotcha’ – the breakneck speed at which cloud-centric vendors revise their software.

Continue reading “Beware of Public Clouds Bearing Too Many Gifts”