While not the only barometer of the embryonic, the escalating and the potentially important, Google Trends does illustrate evolving developments better than most. Search for the term “hybrid cloud” on Trends and you’ll see a mountain of public interest rise from sea level in early 2010 to today’s current peak.
There have been significant milestones along the way, yet interest in hybrid cloud has never been greater than it is today. According to our recent IDC research report, 53 percent of European enterprises currently or plan to use a hybrid cloud solution for their corporate IT. Why?
Hybrid cloud offers a number of benefits to your business, chief among them the ability to take control of corporate IT assets in the service of business objectives, such as growing into a new market or improving service to existing customers.
Importantly, hybrid cloud helps you better address one core IT consideration that has direct relevance to the customer experience and service delivery: connectivity. For those still not sold on the idea, here’s a quick primer on hybrid cloud and its impact on connectivity.
Hybrid cloud refers to an IT deployment model that combines a data centre or private cloud with public cloud from a commercial provider such as Amazon, Microsoft or Google. The former is private infrastructure used by a single organisation behind a firewall. The latter is public infrastructure. Workloads move between these private and public clouds as required over an encrypted connection.
There are lots of good reasons to explore hybrid cloud. To start, there’s the “best of both worlds” argument. It’s the idea that hybrid cloud gives you the security and control of private IT combined with the agility and flexibility of the public cloud. You can quickly launch new apps and services from the public cloud, without having to invest in the hardware or infrastructure to build or acquire your own private facility.
Secondly, hybrid cloud allows you to plan your IT architecture strategically. You could choose to deploy some applications within a data centre shared by peer businesses you want to work with. For example, if you’re in financial services, a London-based data centre would put you near relevant businesses in one of the world’s top financial markets.
How does hybrid cloud improve connectivity? It goes back to the concept of control. By deploying from the hybrid cloud, you can control your IT in a way that improves the latency and reliability of your services. To achieve that control, you need the right hybrid cloud environment.
Colocation is an important part of the hybrid cloud story, because it’s the best environment to ensure high-quality connectivity between private and public clouds. Colocation involves leasing space in a facility from a third-party data centre provider. These providers offer fast, secure interconnections to the top public cloud services, which effectively gives you a fast lane to exchange information between your private and public IT.
It’s better than using the public internet, where connections between public and private clouds can suffer from high latency, inconsistent throughput and poor security. It’s also better than extending your corporate wide area network, which has both scalability and cost issues – especially when you are running high volume workloads and need to connect to multiple clouds.
Top colocation data centres also offer a high degree of choice in internet service providers. With more ISPs to choose from, you can be sure that no matter what the circumstance, you can always deliver services to customers with the lowest possible latency. You can also established direct connections between leased data centres to ensure consistent, quality connectivity throughout your cloud environment.
That’s how colocation helps hybrid cloud deliver on the promise of high-quality connectivity.