• Cisco Study Reveals Trends in a Maturing Cloud Market

    The Service Provider Practice of the Cisco’s Internet Business Solutions Group (IBSG) interviewed more than 80 enterprise IT decision makers from 43 organizations in the U.S., Europe and India to identify trends in the public cloud.  The complete results are available in a White Paper called Network Service Providers as Cloud Providers.

    Survey questions focused on cloud value proposition, approach to cloud migration, applications that are likely to be moved to Cloud and capability of Network Service Providers (NSP) to add value to Cloud technology.

    The results indicate that enterprises of several sectors like manufacturing, retail, professional services, financial services and public sector organizations have a favorable outlook on cloud computing and the majority of these organizations are planning to migrate current non-critical applications to cover all applications in future. Enterprises will use both private and public Clouds to mange IT resources in the near future.  By the end of 2013, approximately 12% of workloads are likely to run in the Cloud, yielding service revenues of $43 billion.

    Applications of cloud vary widely within several vertical markets.  Infrastructure as a service (IaaS) encompasses application development, disaster recovery, data warehousing and analysis. Software as a service (SaaS) is CRM, email, web application and desktop environments.   IaaS delivers on demand as well as automated provisioning of infrastructure elements for data center and wide area network with end-to-end class SLAs, performance and security.  SaaS delivers on-demand application and performance guarantees across applications and networks with value additions like click-to-chat and video calling. Communication features are provided for integration of SaaS and deployment of application at data centers near end user for low latency.

    The study several key issues that Cloud migration addresses, including workload variability, the need for agility and application functionality.  Specifically, workloads with variable or unpredictable resource requirements and customer based applications like online sales would likely be the first to migrate to the Cloud.  Second would be applications with quick setup of functionality like sales and marketing campaigns.  Additionally, applications like process interfaces to business partners and data entry across public sector divisions perform well in the cloud. The survey found Cloud services have the greatest potential to quickly benefit midsized organizations with 250 to 10,000 employees.

    A few constraints of moving to the Cloud are security and privacy, legacy architectures, high bandwidth, fear of vendor lock in and sunk costs.  Cost of software and customization is another deterrent factor, though enterprise decision makers believe the rapid maturation of Cloud innovation and technology will quickly overcome these barriers to rapid migration.

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