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Posts Tagged ‘No Jitter’

We’re about to enter the third phase of the cloud,
one that will fundamentally change the way we live.

Most technologies go through some period of being overhyped and failing to live up to inflated expectations set forth by the vendor community. Cloud, however, has been the exception.

Cloud services have become ubiquitous — you’d be hard-pressed to find a company today that isn’t using at least a little bit of something from the cloud. And many organizations have directives to utilize cloud services first, when available. Make no mistake: The cloud era not only has arrived, but is taking over.

However, we are on the tip of a cloud transition point. In fact, I think we are about to hit the third phase of the cloud — one that will fundamentally change the way we live, allowing us to do things we couldn’t do without the cloud.

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As compelling as this network option might be,
some questions need further exploration.

Not only has WAN transformation been talked about for decades, but SD-WAN in particular has been a red-hot topic for the last couple of years. Investors seem to believe the market will stay this way as well; over the past couple of months both VeloCloud and Aryaka have raised additional funds to be able to meet the explosion in user demand for SD-WAN.

One of the core tenets of my research is that the best opportunity to gain customer share is when markets undergo transitions, which is why we see so much startup activity in this market right now.

Why Is the WAN in Transition?

That’s an easy answer. Legacy WANs are broken and have been for decades. Prior to becoming an analyst I was in corporate IT, and back in the ’90s we discussed WAN transformation. However, unlike today, there really wasn’t a viable alternative at the time. Also, traditional WANs were inflexible, inefficient, and overly expensive. It wasn’t holding the business back so most IT departments took an “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” attitude regarding the wide area network.

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When thinking about the ramifications of Avaya selling
off its networking business, take the long view and relax.

The Green Bay Packers, led by struggling QB Aaron Rodgers, started off the 2014 season 1-2. The always-calm Rodgers told the panicked Packers’ fans to R-E-L-A-X, and the team ended up finishing 12-4 — winning its division but losing in the NFC title game to the Super Bowl-bound Seattle Seahawks.

Rodgers’ message to fans not to panic so early in a long season resonates with me as I think about the news coming out of Avaya yesterday regarding the sale of the data networking business.

We’re obviously very early in Avaya’s bankruptcy cycle, with the Chapter 11 filing coming about six weeks ago. Another piece of the puzzle fell into place last night, when the company announced that Extreme Networks had offered to buy Avaya Networking for $100 million. I see no need for Avaya customers or channel partners to panic; making rash decisions so early in a prolonged cycle can end up bad, so take a breath and see what happens.

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Cisco Umbrella’s ease of deployment combined
with openness and analytics should make it
appealing to a large number of organizations.

The cloud is now a way of life. It’s possible for many users to spend their entire day using cloud applications. Email, social networking, expense management, CRM systems, file sharing applications, the Microsoft Office suite, unified communications, and anything else a worker might need on the daily is available from the cloud. It’s not just the number of cloud services in the market that has grown, but also the use of them. Many organizations I’ve interviewed have told me that cloud usage has doubled in the past two or three years, making it easily the fastest growing part of IT today.

Why is cloud adoption so strong? The answer is that it fits our workforce better than traditional, on-premises applications. What I mean by that is that when workers were in the office at a fixed location, static applications were fine. But workers are now more distributed and work from everywhere, and cloud-based services are much easier to deliver to a mobile workforce so it’s the delivery model that suits workers best.

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Adds enterprise-focused private cloud to ‘Powered By’
hosted and Zang pure-cloud options.

People love having options depending on their preferences or environment. Patriots QB Tom Brady always has a second play to run if his primary one isn’t going to work, I drive either my pick-up truck or car depending on where I’m going, and my kid likes to play some video games on Xbox and others on PlayStation.

When it comes to cloud communications, businesses are no different. Small organizations have different needs than large enterprises. A company that has a 10-year-old platform would be more open to a rip and replace than one that has a two-year-old system. Companies in regulated industries have more stringent security requirements than ones in verticals that don’t have the same compliance mandates. The fact is that no two businesses are the same, and their cloud needs will be different.

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