Welcome!

Agile Computing Authors: Elizabeth White, Karyn Jeffery, Liz McMillan, Jeev Trika, Yakov Fain

Related Topics: @CloudExpo, Containers Expo Blog

@CloudExpo: Article

Cloud Computing Expo - Cloud Spotting

Microsoft's forecast - and its margin implications - is nothing to sneeze at

Since Microsoft’s forecast – and its margin implications – is nothing to sneeze at, we asked industry analyst and cloud spotter Amy Wohl what she has been seeing.

 

 

“The first thing to keep in mind is that we have some semantic confusion, as is usual at this stage of a new market, around just what is a cloud. We are now pretty sure that what we used to call grids and what we now call clouds is the same thing. But we also have things called “platforms” that seem to be very much like a kind of cloud (and are sometimes called clouds) and then there is SaaS itself which looks very much like a cloud with some application software (and some SaaS vendors describe their offering just that way). I’d say we can agree that a cloud is managed computing power, often with applications, accessed across the Internet. And I’ll agree that a company can have its own cloud, if it wants one.

 

 

 

“IBM has finally enunciated a vision for its cloud computing that makes sense for IBM and its customers. It offers a very high-end version of cloud computing (virtually unlimited amounts of power, up to and including mainframe systems, backed by its Tivoli system management. These clouds can be used as part of a large shared infrastructure, where the customer has access to a large pool of computing resources to handle peak activity but doesn’t need to pay for all of this infrastructure all of the time. Some customers (the governments in China and Vietnam, for example) are buying and implementing their own Blue Clouds, which they will use to support particular projects such as university research or computing for high-tech start-ups. And, of course, IBM can create a Blue Cloud for an individual Very Large Enterprise, managed by IBM outside the firewall or by IBM or the customer inside the firewall. The choices are broad.

 

 

 

“IBM actually offers even more choices that may be less obvious. IBM provides a platform to ISVs who want to offer SaaS applications. In that it is very much like other platform vendors like Salesforce.com, eBay, Google or Amazon. A major difference here is whether the platform owner is also an application provider (like Salesforce.com), whose ISVs are related to his application offering or whether the platform provider is simply offering managed computing, perhaps with some technical assistance and/or some marketing oomph. (IBM offers both.)

 

 

 

“It was reported last week that Microsoft is moving to the cloud. In this case, Microsoft means it is going to offer at least one of its applications, Exchange, as a hosted application (SaaS) from its own cloud. Microsoft intends to continue on the road of “software-plus-service,” meaning that you to use a PC on your desk with Office to make use of the Internet-based services that Microsoft also provides. What seems to be moving to Microsoft Clouds are not personal productivity apps (a la Google or Yahoo’s Zimbra), but shared services (mail, collaboration, customer relationship management). Microsoft has been quick to note that this is a big initiative and that in five years they would expect half their customers to use Exchange as a service. This is not just something for smaller customers, either. Microsoft already has some large enterprise like Coke, with 75,000 seats.

 

 

 

“Microsoft has other online (perhaps cloud) services such as its Live services and new Live Mesh service for synchronizing devices of every kind. It is also testing a consumer version of Office that will combine a basic version of desktop Office with an array of online services.

 

 

 

“Last Friday, I spoke with Workday, a SaaS ERP company I’ve been tracking since its start. It’s stirred up quite a bit of attention, boldly claiming last April that its feature set would be at parity with SAP by next fall. So far, it’s on schedule with its product plans, with hefty HR offerings, including payroll and expenses, and a substantial portion of its financial offerings. Look at its latest Workday 4.0 offering at its web site. More interesting is the fact that although it didn’t expect to move beyond the mid-market into the enterprise until more of its product was completed, it already has a number of large enterprises and more in their pipeline.

 

 

 

“Recently I attended a Digital Transformation Forum at Penn State. Clouds and SaaS were definitely subjects of discussion. There was a lot of lively commentary on whether SaaS was for big companies and whether it could provide the customization and security they needed (SAP was an attendee). I believe companies like Workday and Salesforce.com are going to prove that SaaS is about what the application does (the solution) and not the size of the customer. But I think we shall see – and soon.

 

 

 

“Think of it this way:

 

  • “You can access a cloud as pure computing power, a place to load an application that needs lots of computing or requires cyclical peaks
  • “You can find a cloud that provides a platform with APIs to support an ecosystem of ISVs who provide software that you find appealing
  • “You can choose a cloud whose platform includes an application (Salesforce.com) that attracts other ISVs to surround it
  • “You can simply find a SaaS vendor whose application is appealing – you don’t care about the cloud behind it, just the application
  • “You can build your own cloud, managed by a vendor or your own IT staff for some large-scale purpose

 

 

“And no doubt, someone, somewhere, is dreaming up some other things to do with clouds.

 

 

 

“I sense several likely outcomes:

 

  • “A messy period with many clouds, many of them not interoperable because they’re not build to the same standards
  • “An interim period of standardization
  • “A period of consolidation because we really want to buy our applications in a way that they can be aware of each other and use them in a common environment. The easiest way to do this is for each of several vendors to provide a cloud with all of the applications you need and some level of integration. Remember that nothing keeps a cloud/platform vendor from being one of several vendors who offers a popular application if the ISV agrees
  • “A higher level of standardization where (just as we do on the Internet today) any application can be used with any other application on the platform and through the portal of your choice.”

More Stories By Maureen O'Gara

Maureen O'Gara the most read technology reporter for the past 20 years, is the Cloud Computing and Virtualization News Desk editor of SYS-CON Media. She is the publisher of famous "Billygrams" and the editor-in-chief of "Client/Server News" for more than a decade. One of the most respected technology reporters in the business, Maureen can be reached by email at maureen(at)sys-con.com or paperboy(at)g2news.com, and by phone at 516 759-7025. Twitter: @MaureenOGara

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


@ThingsExpo Stories
SoftLayer operates a global cloud infrastructure platform built for Internet scale. With a global footprint of data centers and network points of presence, SoftLayer provides infrastructure as a service to leading-edge customers ranging from Web startups to global enterprises. SoftLayer's modular architecture, full-featured API, and sophisticated automation provide unparalleled performance and control. Its flexible unified platform seamlessly spans physical and virtual devices linked via a world...
SYS-CON Events announced today that ContentMX, the marketing technology and services company with a singular mission to increase engagement and drive more conversations for enterprise, channel and SMB technology marketers, has been named “Sponsor & Exhibitor Lounge Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York. “CloudExpo is a great opportunity to start a conversation with new prospects, but what happens after the...
Companies can harness IoT and predictive analytics to sustain business continuity; predict and manage site performance during emergencies; minimize expensive reactive maintenance; and forecast equipment and maintenance budgets and expenditures. Providing cost-effective, uninterrupted service is challenging, particularly for organizations with geographically dispersed operations.
SYS-CON Events announced today that BMC Software has been named "Siver Sponsor" of SYS-CON's 18th Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7-9, 2015 at the Javits Center in New York, New York. BMC is a global leader in innovative software solutions that help businesses transform into digital enterprises for the ultimate competitive advantage. BMC Digital Enterprise Management is a set of innovative IT solutions designed to make digital business fast, seamless, and optimized from mainframe to mo...
The IoT is changing the way enterprises conduct business. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Eric Hoffman, Vice President at EastBanc Technologies, discuss how businesses can gain an edge over competitors by empowering consumers to take control through IoT. We'll cite examples such as a Washington, D.C.-based sports club that leveraged IoT and the cloud to develop a comprehensive booking system. He'll also highlight how IoT can revitalize and restore outdated business models, making them profitable...
IoT generates lots of temporal data. But how do you unlock its value? How do you coordinate the diverse moving parts that must come together when developing your IoT product? What are the key challenges addressed by Data as a Service? How does cloud computing underlie and connect the notions of Digital and DevOps What is the impact of the API economy? What is the business imperative for Cognitive Computing? Get all these questions and hundreds more like them answered at the 18th Cloud Expo...
SYS-CON Events announced today that EastBanc Technologies will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. EastBanc Technologies has been working at the frontier of technology since 1999. Today, the firm provides full-lifecycle software development delivering flexible technology solutions that seamlessly integrate with existing systems – whether on premise or cloud. EastBanc Technologies partners with p...
SYS-CON Events announced today Object Management Group® has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Commvault, a global leader in enterprise data protection and information management, has been named “Bronze Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Commvault is a leading provider of data protection and information management...
In his session at 18th Cloud Expo, Bruce Swann, Senior Product Marketing Manager at Adobe, will discuss how the Adobe Marketing Cloud can help marketers embrace opportunities for personalized, relevant and real-time customer engagement across offline (direct mail, point of sale, call center) and digital (email, website, SMS, mobile apps, social networks, connected objects). Bruce Swann has more than 15 years of experience working with digital marketing disciplines like web analytics, social med...
SYS-CON Events announced today that Tintri Inc., a leading producer of VM-aware storage (VAS) for virtualization and cloud environments, will exhibit at the 18th International CloudExpo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, New York, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA.
The IoTs will challenge the status quo of how IT and development organizations operate. Or will it? Certainly the fog layer of IoT requires special insights about data ontology, security and transactional integrity. But the developmental challenges are the same: People, Process and Platform. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Craig Sproule, CEO of Metavine, will demonstrate how to move beyond today's coding paradigm and share the must-have mindsets for removing complexity from the development proc...
What a difference a year makes. Organizations aren’t just talking about IoT possibilities, it is now baked into their core business strategy. With IoT, billions of devices generating data from different companies on different networks around the globe need to interact. From efficiency to better customer insights to completely new business models, IoT will turn traditional business models upside down. In the new customer-centric age, the key to success is delivering critical services and apps wit...
Join us at Cloud Expo | @ThingsExpo 2016 – June 7-9 at the Javits Center in New York City and November 1-3 at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA – and deliver your unique message in a way that is striking and unforgettable by taking advantage of SYS-CON's unmatched high-impact, result-driven event / media packages.
In his keynote at 18th Cloud Expo, Andrew Keys, Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise, will provide an overview of the evolution of the Internet and the Database and the future of their combination – the Blockchain. Andrew Keys is Co-Founder of ConsenSys Enterprise. He comes to ConsenSys Enterprise with capital markets, technology and entrepreneurial experience. Previously, he worked for UBS investment bank in equities analysis. Later, he was responsible for the creation and distribution of life ...
As cloud and storage projections continue to rise, the number of organizations moving to the cloud is escalating and it is clear cloud storage is here to stay. However, is it secure? Data is the lifeblood for government entities, countries, cloud service providers and enterprises alike and losing or exposing that data can have disastrous results. There are new concepts for data storage on the horizon that will deliver secure solutions for storing and moving sensitive data around the world. ...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MobiDev will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. MobiDev is a software company that develops and delivers turn-key mobile apps, websites, web services, and complex software systems for startups and enterprises. Since 2009 it has grown from a small group of passionate engineers and business managers to a full-scale mobile software company with over 200 develope...
WebRTC is bringing significant change to the communications landscape that will bridge the worlds of web and telephony, making the Internet the new standard for communications. Cloud9 took the road less traveled and used WebRTC to create a downloadable enterprise-grade communications platform that is changing the communication dynamic in the financial sector. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Leo Papadopoulos, CTO of Cloud9, will discuss the importance of WebRTC and how it enables companies to fo...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MangoApps will exhibit at SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on June 7-9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY. MangoApps provides modern company intranets and team collaboration software, allowing workers to stay connected and productive from anywhere in the world and from any device. For more information, please visit https://www.mangoapps.com/.
SYS-CON Events announced today TechTarget has been named “Media Sponsor” of SYS-CON's 18th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on June 7–9, 2016, at the Javits Center in New York City, NY, and the 19th International Cloud Expo, which will take place on November 1–3, 2016, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. TechTarget is the Web’s leading destination for serious technology buyers researching and making enterprise technology decisions. Its extensive global networ...