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Accelerating into the cloud

Brian Karlovsky | June 25, 2015
As the Cloud sector grows ever more rapidly and different solutions and plays seem to appear almost daily, the question becomes one of detail and matching need with the correct package. Brian Karlovsky looks at how the market is developing and what the channel should be doing for its clients.


Get niche or get big seems to be the current mantra in Australia as Cloud adoption accelerates from Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) to Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS), through to Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) and back to complex SaaS. But while companies large and small become more comfortable with the idea of Cloud, there is still an entrenched distrust of public Clouds whisking precious data overseas.

While local players gained the early advantage with on-shore datacentres, Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, VMware and IBM's Softlayer all now having on-shore options available.

However, latency and the increasing multitude of regulations around data protection and privacy are offering some interesting niche plays for the channel.

Dimension Data general manager of Cloud, David Hanrahan, said he was seeing a significant acceleration of the Cloud market, where organisations were looking for seamless orchestration across public, private and hybrid Clouds. "In the hybrid Cloud world, closely locating colocation facilities is important to ensure application performance does not impact the overall business outcome," he said. "In Australia, the overriding need to ensure data stays onshore -- whether from regulatory or privacy concerns -- means that local Cloud platforms with contracts governed by Australian law are increasingly important to organisations making the move to hybrid Cloud."

Hanrahan said Australian organisations were, in many cases, erring on the side of caution and looking to consume services from local Clouds under local contracts, while still looking for substantial economies of scale to be reflected in pricing.

"This is leading to organisations turning to local instances that are part of a larger, global Cloud ecosystem," he said. "Many are finding that separating sensitive data [which should remain onshore] from non-sensitive data [which could reside anywhere] to be particularly challenging. "As a result, they are managing that risk by ensuring all data remains onshore. This is likely to continue until such time as the ability to apply information security policy once, and have it be effective across the internal and external service delivery models, is more mature."

Local performance

He said many Dimension Data clients were taking advantage of the company's global Cloud platform to deploy the applications and services their business depended on to the nearest region or country to where their users are.

"Providing local performance with global scale and consistency of experience is critically important and the ability to deploy front-end application servers on a global basis, while keeping back-end data onshore, is also a rapidly accelerating deployment model."

However, the move to hybrid Cloud, and a rapidly accelerating move away from in-house datacentres, will see datacentres that can host in-house managed assets close to highly connected Cloud services become more important, according to Hanrahan.


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