Internet Solutions (IS) and its parent Dimension Data have launched the IT group’s managed cloud services platform in SA, operating out of a new IS data centre in Randburg or at clients’ own data centres, if they so choose.
The launch follows Didata’s acquisition last year of OpSource, a cloud specialist based in Santa Clara, California, and the group’s establishment of a centralised global cloud solutions business unit headed by former Didata Australia CEO Steve Nola.
The local cloud offering will provide companies with on-demand computer processing power, memory and storage. It has been designed to work with private, public and hybrid cloud-based systems.
The company says its prices are comparable to those of Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud service, but are also available with what it claims are more flexible options. Local hosting also deals with latency issues associated with managing cloud platforms abroad.
“There’s a lot more acceptance now in terms of clients saying cloud computing is a viable proposition,” Nola tells TechCentral. “They’ve seen the benefits of virtualisation and this is the next extension of that.”
Nola says buying IT as a service has become a “lot more acceptable” to big companies. “They are looking for a better return on their current IT investments,” he says. “It allows them to invest for an average level [of demand] rather than a peak level.”
Obstacles remain, though, mainly concerns about security, some of which is “real” and some of which is “perceived”, Nola says. “We spent a lot of time in designing our architecture, and security is heavily embedded in that.”
With the company’s new cloud management platform, companies can manage public and private cloud services using a Web-based self-service interface and application programming interface.
Didata and IS are also making the services available to third-party service providers that want to resell the offerings under their own brands.
The cloud services are already available in the US, using two data centres there, as well as from data centres in Amsterdam in The Netherlands and Sydney in Australia. A launch in Asia will follow in the next few months. In other parts of the world, Didata is making use of data centre facilities owned by its parent, Japan’s Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp.
“We are deploying [these services] consistently around the world, so the architecture is consistent no matter where you go,” says Nola. — Duncan McLeod, TechCentral
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