The Cloud is Better at the Edge

The Cloud is Better at the Edge

Phillip Marangella, chief marketing officer of EdgeConneX, highlights how many of today’s CIOs are bringing their cloud strategies to the edge. 

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Phillip Marangella, CMO, EdgeConneX

Enterprises continue to confront challenges with the cloud: 62% report “failing” or “very difficult” cloud migration projects. Key sources of that struggle include performance and latency, cost (including network transport costs), cloud access security, and a need for in-house cloud expertise.

For most CIOs, these challenges are getting in the way of their top strategic priority – digital transformation, which isn’t possible without the cloud.

For service providers – including networks that connect enterprises into the data center; cloud access partners that connect them to the clouds; public clouds themselves; bare metal providers; and security, storage, monitoring, and other SaaS and cloud-based IT solutions – this is another inflection point in the evolution of the cloud.

A New Approach to the Cloud: The Hybrid Multi-Cloud Ecosystem at the Edge

CIOs are solving the performance, cost, security, and expertise challenges of the cloud by taking a bold new approach – a hybrid multi-cloud ecosystem at the Edge, which provides:

  • Flexibility to run some workloads on-premises, some in private cloud, and some in public clouds
  • Agility to choose the right cloud, for the right workload, in the right market
  • Choice of best-of-breed providers that can help optimize the enterprise cloud journey with an integrated cloud solution
  • Proximity – a hybrid multi-cloud ecosystem local to the enterprise that yields both the optimal low latency performance and cost savings benefits

For service providers, the hybrid multi-cloud ecosystem at the Edge represents an opportunity to both broaden and deepen engagement with enterprise customers as you help them overcome their biggest cloud challenges and realize their biggest strategic priority.

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(Source: EdgeConneX, The Cloud is Better at the Edge)

Cloud Performance Challenges – Solved

Enterprises are adopting more latency-sensitive technologies like real-time remote operations, video communications, SaaS services, IoT, and more. At the same time, increasing network traffic makes low latency from the enterprise Edge to the cloud harder to achieve. A hybrid multi-cloud ecosystem at the enterprise Edge provides the best of both worlds: economical low latency access to public and private clouds. It’s what Gartner calls distributed cloud computing – “the first cloud model that incorporates physical location of cloud-delivered services as part of its definition.”

For service providers, being part of the hybrid multi-cloud ecosystem at the Edge – being in close proximity to your enterprise customers at their local Edge, or accessible through a cloud gateway data center at the Edge – is essential to delivering the high-performance, low-latency service enterprise customers increasingly expect. For example, Zenlayer, which provides hosted private cloud (bare metal) services at the enterprise Edge, is making inroads with enterprises by offering a latency reduction of up to 40% versus virtual machines.

Cloud Cost Challenges – Solved

Of all the challenges enterprises face in cloud adoption, managing spend is consistently reported as one of the toughest. Unmanaged spending and shadow IT are culprits, but the most significant challenge is the high network cost associated with backhauling data from the Edge to the public cloud. In fact, recent research found a 1691% difference between transport costs getting to and from the cloud at the core versus at the Edge.

That’s tremendous savings that access providers can enable for their enterprise customers by bringing the public cloud to the enterprise Edge. It’s not about being the lowest-cost provider; it’s about cutting the distance between the enterprise Edge and the cloud. Megaport, for example, leverages its SDN to enable customers to rapidly connect their network to other services across the Megaport Network – saving money, improving performance and ensuring greater security for customer applications. Furthermore, cloud managed service providers like Rackspace benefit from being the trusted advisor helping enterprises figure out how to lower their cloud costs and accomplish their goals more cost-effectively.

Cloud Security Challenges – Solved

The cloud is not inherently less secure than on-premises deployments. In fact, cloud providers invest heavily in security and have whole teams to stay abreast of compliance requirements, so in many cases they provide better security than enterprises can provide themselves. What does cause security challenges for enterprises is getting to and from the cloud, governing cloud deployments, and application architecture.

A hybrid multi-cloud ecosystem at the Edge resolves security challenge for enterprises through:

  • Hybrid flexibility and multi-cloud choice to put workloads in the right place depending on security requirements
  • Ecosystem support from MSPs and others for whom cloud security is bread and butter
  • Processing data at the Edge and dedicated cloud access solutions

For service providers, being part of the hybrid multi-cloud ecosystem at the Edge can mean more enterprise business as businesses look to accelerate cloud adoption while mitigating security risks and continue to need help to make it happen.

Cloud Expertise Challenges – Solved

Most enterprises are not in the cloud business. They’re in the financial services business, or healthcare, or gaming, or retail, or manufacturing (the list goes on, of course). Therefore,  there is often stiff competition for cloud expertise, both among enterprises but also with public cloud providers like AWS, Microsoft and Google or cloud MSPs like Rackspace and Zenlayer.

When cloud expertise is hard to identify or retain, despite the best efforts of any business, the resulting inconsistency often leads to performance, cost, and security issues for enterprises, as deploying applications in the cloud requires very different considerations than on-premises in order to ensure optimal performance, economics, and security. Enterprises can solve these challenges by relying on MSPs and other service providers (such as Akamai for security and Zadara for storage). For service providers, being part of the hybrid multi-cloud ecosystem at the Edge is an opportunity to become enterprises’ trusted source for cloud expertise.

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(Source: EdgeConneX, The Cloud is Better at the Edge)

Now serving: Hybrid flexibility, Multi-Cloud Agility, Ecosystem Choice, and Edge Proximity

Being part of the hybrid multi-cloud ecosystem at the Edge is an opportunity for service providers to both broaden and deepen relationships with enterprise customers by helping them overcome their biggest cloud challenges (performance, cost, security, expertise) to realize their biggest strategic priority (digital transformation).

Service providers and CIOs who want to learn more about the hybrid multi-cloud ecosystem at the Edge can check out our enterprise-targeted interactive EdgeBook. You can also sign up here to be notified when we release the service provider version of the EdgeBook.

Phillip Marangella is CMO of EdgeConneX, the data center provider that partners with service providers to bring the hybrid multi-cloud ecosystem local to enterprises around the world. 

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