Interconnecting Clouds: Creating the Interconnected Enterprise

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When you think of disruptive technologies that have emerged in the last couple of decades, cloud computing is one of the most transformative. According to the Cisco Cloud Index, by 2018, global cloud traffic will nearly quadruple to 6.5 zettabytes (ZB) per year, representing over three-quarters of total data center traffic (8.6 ZB).

In this, the third post in our interconnected enterprise blog series, we’ll be focusing on the reasons interconnection can make or break your cloud vision and strategies for interconnecting clouds.

It’s no surprise that enterprises are flocking to the cloud, many for the following reasons:

  • Chief Information Officers see no benefit to reinventing technology services that already exist in the cloud marketplace.
  • Migrating difficult-to-manage IT services, applications and data to a more agile and pay-as-you-go model is self-funding.
  • The magnitude of different cloud services available enables enterprises to gain new capabilities and add new value to their customer offerings.

Clouds enable ubiquitous service delivery and, as global enterprises are finding out, one-to-one cloud connection is not enough – they need multi-cloud, multi-region connectivity for both public and private clouds. Users – employees, partners and customers – also need to be able to access these services from multiple devices to fully take advantage of all of the benefits that the growing variety of cloud services offer.

In an interconnected enterprise, these and many other cloud adoption challenges can be eliminated in the following ways:

  • Interconnecting and scaling multiple cloud services – Interconnectivity among multiple clouds needs to be as agile and dynamic as the cloud services being connected. In the interconnected enterprise, fast virtual connectivity provisioning enables on-demand access to networks and multi-clouds and the ability to turn services up or down more cost-effectively. A distributed interconnection-oriented platform that provides seamless, low-latency connectivity to multiple clouds across sites or geographies can deliver “local” performance, regardless of where the cloud service resides.
  • Multi-cloud workload management – There is no need for “backhauling” increasing amounts of cloud traffic to the enterprise data center within the interconnected enterprise, because the data is distributed to locations closer to the users. Dynamic bandwidth allocation is possible within an interconnection-oriented platform that is API-based and supports virtual, rather than physical, connections, to better manage cloud traffic, anytime and anywhere. It is also possible to integrate the operational management tools required to prevent outages and performance degradation when interconnecting to multiple networks and clouds.
  • Eliminating cyber-security exposure – The Internet’s unreliability and the associated business and reputational damage that security breaches pose have been well documented. In the interconnected enterprise, you have the ability to bypass the public Internet and connect directly and securely to multiple clouds, giving your enterprise the full benefit of hybrid and multi-cloud services without security concerns. In addition, an API-based platform enables you to layer on custom security services geared to protect your sensitive customer corporate assets in the cloud.
  • Tapping into dense cloud interconnection ecosystems – Because the interconnected enterprise enables more dynamic, secure and easier-to-manage interconnection, there is a natural tendency for network and cloud providers to collaborate and innovate and, ultimately, provide more value-added cloud services to their customers. Enterprises can leverage these rich ecosystems to find the best network and cloud providers to support their specific workloads and business processes, which may require a number of different interdependent services.

We feel that cloud computing and the interconnected enterprise are inseparable. Each needs the other to succeed.

Our next blog in the interconnected enterprise series looks at how interconnecting data has become more challenging because of two highly disruptive technologies: big data and the Internet of Things, and explores what you can do about it.

Read more about the interconnected enterprise from Equinix.com and check out some white papers, case studies and an infographic.

Read all five parts of the Interconnected Enterprise series.