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Cisco Storms Into The Cloud Market

CloudVerse, a framework that combines unified data center, cloud intelligent networks and cloud applications, is Cisco's cloud coming-out party, say company officials. Code-named Hurricane, CloudVerse is one of the company's top five priorities. Cisco sees hundreds if not thousands of cloud providers--what it calls "the world of many clouds"--and it wants to ensure it gets more than its fair share of the cloud infrastructure market.

The math is simple, says the networking giant: Global cloud computing traffic will grow 12-fold from 130 exabytes to reach a total of 1.6 zettabytes annually by 2015, a 66% compound annual growth rate (CAGR). According to Cisco's inaugural Global Cloud Index (2010 to 2015), released in late November, cloud is the fastest-growing component of data center traffic, which itself will grow four-fold at a 33% CAGR during this period. Today, cloud is estimated to be 11% of data center traffic, growing to more than 33% of the total by 2015, at which time 76% of data center traffic will remain within the data center itself as workloads migrate between various virtual machines and background tasks, 17% leaves the data center to be delivered to the end user, and an additional 7% is generated between data centers through activities such as cloud bursting, data replication and updates.

Cisco says CloudVerse delivers a business-class cloud experience within the cloud, between cloudsand beyond the cloud to the end user, adding that it has already signed up a number of enterprises, service providers and governments, including ACS, Fujitsu, Orange Business Services and Verizon Terremark. The company says more than 70% of leading cloud providers are using Cisco CloudVerse on their journey to the cloud.

The company says the untold story of the cloud is the network, and unfortunately it doesn't occur to people that the network is critical until it fails. Cisco sees its big opportunity to enable customers to build clouds, with tailored solutions for building clouds, a "rich" ecosystem of integrated solutions and innovative cloud services.

Dana Cooperson, VP, network infrastructure, Ovum, likes Cisco's explicit connection between the resources inside the data center and the interconnection resources. "If service providers can use their network assets as a key part of their cloud offer to enterprise customers to create a secure, robust set of cloud services, then the cloud services market will expand and they will gain a healthy share of the private/hybrid cloud services market. I think that Cisco’s go-to market, which includes Cisco certifications, is very interesting and could be a big advantage. The various management bits, including Cisco Unified Management and, specifically, Cisco Intelligent Automation for Cloud and Cisco Network ServicesManager, are comprehensive and intriguing and will make or break the end-to-end nature of the solution."

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