Most people & organisations I speak to love the idea of ‘pay-as-you-use’ cloud offerings. But, as I wrote about in this previous blog, they really don’t like the idea of being ‘locked-in’ to one cloud provider, have both legitimate and perceived security concerns and they are increasingly worried about the growing issue of Shadow IT (IT bought by individuals, business units outside the control and governance of the IT department). They want access to open, yet secure hybrid clouds. With the ability to securely manage, govern, and efficiently transport applications and data across those clouds. And ultimately focus on improved service delivery to their end customers.
At Cisco Live in Milan this morning Cisco announced an expansion of their Cloud strategy and more specifically Cisco InterCloud. This is a significant announcement from the world’s largest networking (and fastest growing server) vendor. Especially as all of us in the IT ecosystem try to work out how to help IT departments move from being builders of data centres, to brokers of services. This has to be based on the ability to offer a choice of hybrid cloud services to users, both owned (Private), borrowed (Public) and combinations of these (Hybrid). NetApp is one of Cisco’s partners for the launch of InterCloud (see Phil Brotherton’s blog post for more details), together with Citrix, service providers including BT (who announced their intention to integrate InterCloud into their Cloud Compute portfolio, based on FlexPod) and others.
In other news, again together with Cisco, we also announced 6 new FlexPod converged infrastructure designs including for Microsoft Private Cloud, Citrix CloudPlatform (powered by Apache CloudStack), VMware vSphere 5.1, and the recently announced Cisco 9000 series – the building block for Application Centric Infrastructure (ACI).
Based on this evidence, will 2014 finally be the ‘Year of [Hybrid] Cloud’?