The Mobile Cloud: Where Mobile Traffic Really Moves

Stefan Raab


ResearchandMarkets forecasts the global mobile cloud computing (MCC) market will grow from $9.43 billion in 2014 to $46.90 billion by 2019. MCC is how mobile applications are built, powered and hosted using cloud computing and mobile devices running cloud-based Web apps rather than, or in addition to, native apps.

This amalgamation of cloud computing, mobile devices, wireless networks and app/content providers is a result of the perfect storm among a number of trends including:

  • enterprises and consumers using mobile devices to connect in real-time
  • continuous developments (e.g., security, reliability) in the mobile technology for businesses
  • cloud technology improving scalability to mobile partners and service delivery to mobile users
  • cloud-based apps being used to enhance limited memory/power mobile devices

It’s becoming clear to many providers that the scale and pace of adoption of their mobile apps/content can only be met by cloud services. For example, Netflix leverages some of its cloud partners to do double duty. According to a recent Wall Street Journal article, Netflix increasingly using services from Amazon Web Services (AWS), Google Inc., Workday Inc. and Box Inc. to provide various parts of its IT infrastructure. Netflix combines cloud processing with content delivery networks (primarily their own Open Connect) to achieve Internet leading scalability in the delivery of video.

For maintaining secure mobile payments during peak, holiday purchasing times, such as Black Friday or Cyber-Monday, companies rely on multiple authentication and validation services to approve transactions and avoid fraud. Many online payment services, such as American Express’ recently announced token-based service, are moving to the cloud.

The Mobile Cloud Mashup

MCC is a mashup of Internet, networking, cloud, and app/content technology and services providers to meet the mobile data capacity challenge. A recent infographic developed by 4GAmericas lays out the trends in Mobile Connectivity Innovation and what is needed to support the explosive data growth coming our way. Next to greater innovations in mobile technologies, increased network efficiency is one of the top priorities.

History repeats itself

Mobile and cloud computing have gone from being niche to mainstream, foundational technologies. Business and consumer applications both need to reside on phones, tablets and PCs. If cloud has a role in mobile infrastructures is not the issue, but rather how large a role cloud plays.

We’ve been here before. When the Internet first became available to the public in the 1990s, Equinix realized that the exchange of information was what made the Internet successful. The carrier-neutral, IBX locations where networks and ISPs interconnected, mirrored major international airports with their hub and spoke transport model.

Fast forward to 2014:

– Mobile now makes up a majority of Internet traffic, approximately 60% in the U.S.

– Mobile consumed services are increasingly being stored and moved through the cloud to the tune of $46.90 billion by 2019

Just as Equinix provided a vendor-neutral interconnection platform for network and ISP providers, mobile and cloud service providers are also residing peacefully under the same roof.

Learn more about Equinix mobile services.