Amazon & The Enterprise

The following is an excerpt from the recently published SolidFire whitepaper, Beyond Test & Development: What virtualization can teach us about the next phase of cloud computing. This is the fourth post in a six part series that will be published each Monday. The whitepaper in its entirety can be found here.

Beyond the opportunity at stake, perhaps the more interesting question is whether or not Amazon can maintain its stronghold on the market through the transition to the production era. VMware was able to nimbly expand its reach from predominantly test and development to production. Can AWS successfully navigate this transition point in the cloud infrastructure market with the same elegance?

As the undisputed leader of the test and development era, AWS is starting from a position of strength as we enter the next phase of the cloud market growth. The bad news for competing service providers is that Amazon is churning out new features and services weekly to accommodate the requirements of increasingly more demanding workloads. The introductions of DynamoDB, Provisioned IOPS, Glacier, and high-capacity instances throughout the last year are all examples of this effort. The good news for other cloud providers is that enterprises are less likely to relinquish all of their data, computing and storage to one single vendor in the same manner they allowed VMware to virtualize all of its x86 workloads on premise. Risk aversion and varying IT environment complexity will dictate a more diverse range of cloud providers servicing each enterprise.

But cloud providers are not only competing with Amazon and other cloud providers for the right to host these workloads. In fact, probably the biggest threat to public cloud adoption is the incumbent provider: on-premise IT. Despite the increasing “cloud first” mandate proliferating across IT departments, cloud providers must prove capable of catering to the performance, reliability, and privacy demands of business and mission critical applications. If enterprises lack the confidence to entrust cloud providers with their most performance-sensitive workloads, then these applications will remain on-premise.

In our next post in the series, to be released July 8th, we will continue to examine some of the key challenges that Amazon, and other service providers, must be able to address in order to ensure the cloud computing market can continue on its current growth trajectory

-Dave Cahill, Director of Strategic Alliances

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