Tag: Cloud

Huawei wants to build cloud alliance

grandpa_simpson_yelling_at_cloudHuawei wants to build “one of the world’s five clouds”, and take on the public cloud giants Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, Google and IBM.

Huawei’s rotating and spinning CEO Guo Ping said the cloud is a cornerstone of the intelligent world.

Talking to the assembled throngs at Huawei Connect 2017, in Shanghai, China. Ping pointed to Huawei’s “long-term, strategic investment in public cloud”.

Ping said the vendor was partnering with carriers Deutsche Telekom, Orange and Telefonica internationally to provide public cloud services. This would work with partners “99 percent of the time” to bring its products to the non-Chinese market.

He compared the new “cloud alliance” to airlines’ partner alliances, “which take passengers wherever they need to go in the world.

“These telcos have established trust and relationships with governments and large enterprises. That’s the model we will build on. Huawei has never taken shortcuts and we never will… It’s the same for Huawei Cloud. We will work with partners to build a cloud alliance.”

Ping believes Huawei differs from its rivals in that it doesn’t look to monetise its customers’ data.

“In 2015 we launched our cloud strategy and we said our public cloud wouldn’t touch the customer’s applications or data. We commit to that again, that without the consent of the customer, Huawei Cloud won’t monetize their data. “We won’t turn their data into our own and profit from it.”

Zheng Yelai, president of Huawei Cloud BU and IT product line, admitted Huawei wasn’t yet “the best player, but we are the fastest moving player making progress. Huawei is not a great talker about ideas, but we are a great doer in making them happen”,  he said.

Microsoft makes more money from clouds

lightning-cloudMicrosoft is starting to make significant piles of cash from its cloud thanks to the efforts of its channel.

This year Office cloud revenues surpassed traditional licences for the first time and Richard Ellis, Microsoft Office Division lead, says much of the impetus behind the growth in the company’s cloud business has been driven by the success of its cloud solution partner (CSP) programme.

“The CSP framework is a great example of the huge opportunity for partners,” he says, “giving them the ability to bill, invoice and provide managed service and support to Office 365 customers using our infrastructure. It allows partners to set their own pricing, their own support contracts and work with ISVs to add value.”

There are 35,000 CSP partners globally and the number is growing at the rate of 6,000 a month. “CSP is enabling partners to grow their revenue share with customers,” Ellis claims, revealing that CSP partners enjoyed 10 percent year on year average revenue per user growth.

Ellis said most partners were aware of Vole’s shift to the cloud and are taking advantage of it. “It’s for every partner to assess what their own services are and what their value proposition is to their customers. That’s always been crucial and it will be crucial going forward. Partners need to be very clear what value they are adding.”

Google offers second tier cloud

MI0002204246Search engine outfit Google is offering a cheaper and cheerful version of its GCP cloud network.

While it will have lower specs than the real deal, Google insists that it matches those offered by its public cloud competitors.

Writing in his bog, Google’s SVP of technical infrastructure  Urs Hölzle, said that the search engine was the first major cloud provider to offer a tiered network service, breaking its Google Cloud Platform (GCP) into a Premium Tier and a Standard Tier.

“Over the last 18 years we [have] built the world’s largest network, which by some accounts delivers 25 to 30 percent of all internet traffic. You enjoy the same infrastructure with Premium Tier. But for some use cases, you may prefer a cheaper, lower-performance alternative. With Network Service Tiers, you can choose the network that’s right for you, for each application.”

The Standard Tier is available at a lower rate because it uses ISP networks to deliver traffic to a user’s cloud applications, rather than its own private network – which is used for the likes of Google Search and YouTube, Google said.

Google is unlikely to find many takers to opt for the lower standard, but that the move will be used to market the high performance of its network. The move is being touted in the channel as clever marketing.

Google lags in the size and number of datacentres but it can say its rivals don’t have the same quality.

 

Cloudy Elastifile signs up BigTec

cloud (264 x 264)Hybrid cloud storage start-up Elastifile has signed BigTec as its first European distributor.

The Israeli vendor, which claims its software can help firms move to the public cloud and prevent cloud lock-in, has raised $65 million in funding over the last year, and launched a UK office in January.

Elastifile’s sales director Eddie Galvan said that BigTec’s success building sales for other storage start-ups made it a natural ally.

“We want to successfully penetrate not just the UK market but the European market: we’ve signed an agreement with them across Europe. I’d describe them as an unconventional distributor, meaning they roll up their sleeves and actually generate opportunities and really assist in the sales effort.”

Elastifile’s software is designed to remove barriers for businesses moving to public cloud, and prevent cloud lock-in, by providing a menu of integrated public cloud access.

Resellers with customers that are moving to the public cloud are finding that one of the biggest inhibitors is that they have to re-factor their applications in order for them to run in AWS or Google, or move to a new application, which can be costly and time consuming.

“We enable their customers to move those workloads to the public cloud without this, then save them money on resources in the public cloud when running those applications there, and thirdly, enable them to avoid getting locked into cloud vendors like AWS, by providing the ability to seamlessly move back if needs be,” he said.

Elastifile is backed by Dell, Cisco and Lenovo and has the bandwidth to take on 10 reseller partners across the region. The vendor wants to have another round of funding at the back-end of 2017 aimed specifically at scaling out its sales and channel teams.

French data outfit OVH opens in London

bhs_second_8French cloud computing mega-firm OVH has opened its first UK-based data centre in London.

OVH, has a million customers around the world, 22 data centres worldwide and a bandwidth capacity of 11Tbps.

The new London facility comes as part of OVH’s €1.5 billion five-year global expansion plan. The plan involves increasing the company’s European  operations while building up global presence.

In the last year it has built new data centres in Australia, Singapore, Poland and most recently Germany.

Hiren Parekh, director cloud for EMEA at OVH, commented: “This marks a significant step forward for OVH in supporting UK customers with a local dedicated gateway into our worldwide network.”

The new €1.5 billion investment plan received a €250 million capital increase from the two investment funds KKR and TowerBrook in 2016.

The data centre in south-east London provides increased speed, reliability and security for its UK customer base, reinforcing its commitment to the country despite all the controversy surrounding Brexit.

“We are offering low latency, guaranteed bandwidth and enhanced DDoS protection for all of our customers. It is particularly beneficial for those working in the finance sector or public services, where hosting data in-country is a key requirement in order to be compliant with data protection and governance, and the protection standards of their customers,” added Parekh.

The site of the new London facility was previously owned by a telco and it is near two substations. It is also close to OVH’s point of presence and is directly connected to the company’s global network of data centres. It houses 40,000 servers as well as custom engineered components such as a water-cooling system.

 

Amazon web services growing strongly

amazonAmazon said that Amazon Web Services revenue is continuing to grow strongly and should make it $16 billion a year.

The company added that revenue growth for the public cloud giant had slowed down a bit.

AWS was critical to Amazon’s profitability in its 2017 fiscal second quarter. Operating income for the cloud business, $916 million, was up 28 percent year over year from $718 million. Meanwhile, operating income for all of Amazon was $628 million.

Amazon’s chief financial officer, Brian Olsavsky told investors during a short question and answer session that AWS’s run rate, which stood at $14 billion in the previous quarter, rose to $16 billion.

“We saw the largest quarter-over-quarter expansion in revenue for that business,” Olsavsky said.

Amazon supported that growth with a 71 percent year-on-year increase in investment to accelerate services and geographic expansion, including the opening of five new sites around the world, Olsavsky said.

In addition, the growth in the number of engineering and salespeople at AWS outpaced that of Amazon’s entire workforce, which numbers about 340,000, he said. AWS revenue for the quarter reached $4.1 billion, up 42 percent over the $2.9 billion reported for the second quarter of 2016, Amazon said.

However, that rise continues a trend of slower growth for AWS. Amazon figures show that revenue growth has slowed for the last six consecutive quarters. However, financial news site CNBC said Thursday that the growth has slowed for the last eight straight quarters, falling from a peak of 81 percent in the second quarter of 2015.

Currys told off for cloud exaggeration

345307Currys PC World has been told off for exaggerating the capability of its Knowhow Cloud backup.

A misleading advert on currys.co.uk was banned by the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority after it ruled that “the impression created by the ad was not that the product was singularly for cloud storage, but that it provided some sort of additional security”.

“This”, continued the ASA, “was suggested by the claim ‘Complete Security … All your data is protected and backed up in our military grade encrypted UK based data centres’.”

The advertising regulator said this meant consumers “would understand this claim to mean the product would provide additional security benefits beyond those of a standard cloud storage service”.

But a Knowhow Cloud customer tried to use the service to restore his backups after a ransomware attack. However he found that his data could only be restored if files “were individually recovered through a time-consuming manual process”.

Currys claimed its cloudy backup service was “not intended to cover files that were virus infected, which created a rather complex situation for restoration”. It blamed the customer, suggesting that getting caught in a ransomware attack was his own fault for having “inadequate virus protection” the ASA said.

Dell EMC enhances its channel

i_love_enhancements_tshirtDell EMC has released a set of “enhancements” for its channel partners.

As you might expect, cloud computing featured heavily in the programme revisions. Dell EMC is keen to encourage its partners in the area, which is making it a bomb.

The Dell EMC Networking X-series will also become the vendor’s first distributor-exclusive product line. The X-Series is a family of web-managed 1GbE and 10GbE switches, designed for SMBs.

The outfit has expanded its client incumbency programme for the commercial segment, claiming that it will protect partners’ relationships with historical look-back for revenue and deal registration.

Virtustream has added its enterprise cloud solution platform to the partner programme. The idea is that it will provide “customers with public cloud consumption with private cloud performance”.

Dell EMC has been talking up its “flexible consumption models” through the channel with Cloud Flex, storage offering Flex on Demand and PC-as-a-service packages on certain product portfolios.

It expanded 2017’s Cloud Service Provider and Strategic Outsourcer track, alongside offering rebates based on sell-in revenues.

Michael Collins, senior vice president, channel at Dell EMC EMEA said that the developments underline Dell EMC’s strategy to position its partners as strategic advisers that enterprises can trust.

“We want our customers to know that Dell EMC’s partner ecosystem is steadfastly committed to understanding their immediate and future business IT needs.

“We believe that our latest updates to the Dell EMC Partner Programme make us the leading long-term technology provider of choice to help channel partners satisfy their customers and guide them along their IT infrastructure transformation journey”, added Collins.

iManage’s cloud is in the hands of lawyers

billboard_dogsiManage announced that a big firm of European patent and trademark attorneys has selected iManage Cloud for its operations.

Potter Clarkson LLP chose iManage Cloud to move from paper-based files and an existing in-house document management system to a modernised and efficient cloud-based solution.

iManage Cloud will improve workflows and cross-firm collaboration. Future integration with Potter Clarkson’s planned business process application will allow the firm to pull together its different data sources including client, matter and operational information to help achieve business insight and value from their data.

Potter Clarkson Practice Manager Philip Morris said that iManage Cloud will significantly improve efficiency throughout its business, enhancing its  Microsoft Office 365 investment and providing the capability to work securely with matter and client files from anywhere on just about any device.

“The mobility, collaboration and resilience delivered by the product is incredibly important to us, while iManage’s UK-based data centres ensure the integrity and security of our data.”

iManage partner Phoenix Business Solutions is assisting Potter Clarkson with the implementation. The firm plans to roll out the solution by the beginning of November 2017, with an expected 160 users throughout the organisation.

iManage EMEA General Manager Geoff Hornsby said deploying iManage Cloud, Potter Clarkson will provide its patent attorneys with tools that enable them to deliver more responsive service to their clients without compromising security.

Microsoft admits partners are more cloud savvy

Ominous Clouds over Dublin CityMicrosoft has admitted that it has not kept pace with the speed that its partners have moved to the cloud.

The software king of the world has revealed more details of its newly formed One Commercial Partner business, which brings together all partner-facing teams across the organisation.

One Commercial Partner was first announced in January, as Microsoft revealed plans to bring together its enterprise and SMB teams, and more details have now been announced.

Ron Huddleston commercial vice president of One Commercial Partner, said the new business will incorporate Microsoft’s offerings in technical, marketing, business development and programmes. He declared that the new team is “not just partner led, it’s partner first”.

Microsoft is appointing dedicated channel managers for the first time, which Huddleston claimed will help to fit the right customer with the right partner.

“We’re investing $250 million in connecting partners to customers,” he said. “We’re starting with one new role, globally – the channel manager who specialises in connecting partners to customers. This will feel very different. This is not a partner account manager, they’re focused on customer success.”

Gavriella Schuster, Volish corporate vice president, said that Microsoft has in the past been guilty of asking its partners to ready themselves for digital transformation but, from a sales point of view, had not done so itself.

Schuster realised Microsoft was falling behind its partners and had innovated its engineering, services and business models, but had lagged in the innovation in our sales model and it shows.

She realised that partners had changed and Microsoft had not kept up, and now we were getting in their way.

Microsoft has committed to giving its internal sales teams 10 per cent commission on an Azure solutions that are co-sold with partners. Microsoft account teams will also, for the first time, be aligned by industry – to develop specialisations in specific fields.

Microsoft claims hybrid cloud infrastructure is the winner

grandpa_simpson_yelling_at_cloudSoftware King of the World, Microsoft’s Satya Nadella has been insisting that the private versus public cloud debate is over and hybrid infrastructure is the ultimate winner.

Nadella said that the battle between private cloud and public cloud has ended with neither emerging victorious.

Talking to the assembled throngs at the Microsoft Inspire partner conference in Washington, Nadella said that the hybrid infrastructure was the only winner in the private versus public cloud duel.

Vole announced more details of its Azure stack – with integrated systems on hardware from Dell EMC, Hewlett Packard Enterprise and Lenovo set to start shipping from September.

Nadella said: “It’s clear as day that what is needed is more distributed computing infrastructure – that true hybrid computing fabric – so that you can manage your smart city, smart factory, smart car as well as take advantage of the public cloud.”

Nadella said that Microsoft will reshape everything it does into four solution areas: modern workplace, business applications, applications and infrastructure, and data and artificial intelligence.

He also opened up on the partner benefits of Microsoft 365, which rolls up Office 365 with Windows 10 and other enterprise products.

“When it comes to partner opportunity, it’s tremendous for you to be able to really serve the needs of these customers across the entire depth and breadth of the employee base, and hopefully you even caught that it’s not just about the knowledge worker, it’s even about these first-line workers in retail and other industries,” he said.

Opsgility doubles in Dublin

Ominous Clouds over Dublin CityMicrosoft cloud expert Opsgility has opened a new subsidiary office located in Dublin, Ireland.

Dr. Jonathan Tuliani has been appointed as the Managing Director of this new office, effective July 1. Tuliani will report to Michael Washam, CEO, and will oversee the rapidly expanding European market.

Tuliani comes to Opsgility after spending more than nine years at Microsoft, most recently serving as the Principal Program Manager on the Azure Networking Team. As part of a global team, he led the development of multiple Microsoft Azure services, including Azure DNS and Azure Traffic Manager.

“Not only are we excited to be opening this new office, we’re also thrilled to bring such a strong technical leader to Opsgility,” said Michael Washam, CEO of Opsgility. “The cloud readiness market is rapidly growing, and this new office, paired with Jonathan’s skillset, presents us the opportunity to better service our global clients.”

He said: “This new role will allow me to act as a bridge between Microsoft’s Cloud technology and Opsgility’s breadth of customers. I was drawn to the direct line between the work Opsgility does and the value that’s delivered to their customers. While Opsgility is a small team, they have seen tremendous growth over the past several years, and they are a powerhouse when it comes to Microsoft training. I am excited to be a part of this fast-growing company and eager to see where we go over the next several years.”

Prior to Microsoft, Tuliani was the Technical Director at Cryptomathic Limited, a specialist security software vendor. Reporting directly to the CEO, he was responsible for all UK technical activities. Tuliani earned his Ph.D. in Mathematics from the University of London and serves on the board of The Children’s House, a local school in Dublin.

Cloud giants need channel for next phase

ae75610647df615b38555f1bc5ac6896Market analyst outfit Canalys says that the cloud giants such as AWS, Microsoft and Google are embracing the channel as they look to capitalise on the “next phase” of cloud adoption.

AWS, Microsoft and Google grew their cloud infrastructure revenues by 43 percent, 93 percent and 74 percent respectively in Q1, year on year, as the overall market rose by 42 percent to $11.4 billion, Canalys said.

But the big three have worked out that building an indirect business will be the only way to maintain that order of growth,

Canalys principal analyst Matthew Ball said that the next phase of cloud adoption means that they are looking at corporate and mid-market accounts, and for that they need greater reach and scale, and to do that they need the channel.

Big cloud providers, AWS and Google have not come from an enterprise IT background so they are starting to mature their partner programmes and channel engagements.

They are looking to focus on that more because they recognise that the channel has those relationships with customers.

Canalys thinks the channel will be a part of their go-to-market strategies, especially if they want to maintain their high levels of growth each quarter and year.

Canalys pegged AWS’ Q1 cloud infrastructure sales at over $3.5 billion but the market leader’s success need not be at the cost of the channel, said Ball, who argued that the rise of cloud has in some cases expanded the role played by resellers.

Ball said that the channel has made good business selling datacentre infrastructure in the past, and will do so.

Cloud is another choice for customers in terms of how they operate their IT environments and, for sure, it’s a concern for channel partners. Some partners have been affected by cloud and others changing their business model to develop consultancy or professional services to help their customers define a cloud environment.

Magento sees cloudy growth

image_zps7ea521eeCloud digital commerce outfit, Magento, said that it was seeing significant growth and adoption of its next generation cloud platform and solutions across Europe.

The outfit had a record-breaking year and significant growth in its flagship platform with 42 percent year over year growth in new licence revenues in Europe.

Magento CEO Mark Lavelle said that merchants must anticipate and deliver exceptional customer experiences that are true to their brand, and distinguish themselves from the competition.

“The Magento Commerce Cloud offers merchants the agility they need to innovate and stay ahead in a rapidly evolving and competitive environment,” he said. “Over the past year, we’ve seen increased demand and accelerated adoption of our commerce suite across B2B and B2C merchants in the region, and more than 60 percent of our new customer deals are with our cloud-based digital platform.”

Magento increased its presence in the UK and across Europe, Middle East and Africa regions with dedicated sales, marketing, customer support and development personnel.

Lavelle said that Magento is actively growing strategic partnerships in the EMEA region with technology vendors such as Amazon Pay, Vertex and Nosto, to name a few. These local partnerships with the added local staff have expanded Magento’s footprint and has contributed to Magento’s growth in the European market.

Magento also announced the rebranding of its commerce suite, and will now be called the Magento Cloud, to better align to customer needs and reflect the growing adoption of its technology platform.

The company is simplifying the names of its flagship digital platform and order management products to Magento Commerce (formerly Magento Enterprise Cloud Edition and Magento Enterprise Edition) and Magento Order Management (formerly Magento Commerce Order Management). Magento is also recognizing the contributing of its global ecosystem beyond a single product and renaming Magento Community Edition to Magento Open Source.

Magento was recently named a leader by Gartner in the April 2017 Magic Quadrant for Digital Commerce.

“More than $1 trillion in IT spending will be directly or indirectly affected by the shift to cloud during the next five years. This will make cloud computing one of the most disruptive forces of IT spending since the early days of the digital age.

 

Oracle predicts half of businesses will be cloud based

Oracle-Announces-X5Oracle thinks that nearly half of companies plan to run their business on cloud infrastructure within three years

James Stanbridge, Vice President Iaas Product Management at Oracle said businesses were rapidly embracing cloud infrastructure (IaaS) to boost performance and innovation levels, new research from Oracle has revealed. While negative perceptions around security, complexity and loss of control still present barriers to adoption, they are shown to be outdated myths, with those that have moved to IaaS proving the reality is far more positive.

Two thirds of businesses that are already using IaaS to some extent, say it makes it easier to innovate. The same proportion says moving to IaaS has significantly cut their time to deploy new applications or services. Furthermore, 64 percent say IaaS has significantly cut on-going maintenance costs and 59 percent of all respondents believe businesses not investing in IaaS will increasingly find themselves struggling to keep pace with businesses that are.

The research also found that experienced users are almost twice as likely to believe IaaS can provide world class operational performance in terms of availability, uptime and speed, compared to non-adopters. Although some fear the move to IaaS may be complicated, 64 percent of experienced IaaS users say the move was easier than they expected.

Most respondents agree IaaS will have a role to play in their business within three years, with 44 percent saying they will run most – or all of their business IT infrastructure on IaaS. Only 10 percent of respondents believe IaaS will still have little or no role in their business in three years.

Stanbridge said: “When it comes to cloud adoption there has always been a case of perception lagging behind reality. Cloud is still relatively new to a lot of businesses and some outdated perceptions persist. We are now seeing high levels of success and satisfaction from businesses that are saving money, cutting complexity and driving exciting innovation thanks to cloud infrastructure. Those resisting the move need to challenge the perceptions holding them back because the longer they wait, the further ahead their competitors will pull.”