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Cloud computing storming (and obscuring) at all levels: SMB, Tier 1, IP Centrix (ugh)

Everyone is on the cloud computing bandwagon, making it the “it” marketing term for people explaining exactly what they do (and the UC people should be scared because cloud is overrunning “UC”).  Tier 1 service providers, including Verizon Business and France Telecom, are storming ahead while other people use more – shall we say – questionable language.

The biggest abuse of the cloud computing term seems to come from the hardcore TDM/telco crowd, who have said things like “IP Centrix was the first cloud computing service” and “The phone system was the first cloud service.”

All together now – UGH!

Now I’ve gotten that off my chest, Verizon Business (www.verizonbusiness.com) rolled out an Amazon-like pay-as-you-go cloud computing service earlier this month.

The addition to Verizon’s Computing as a Service (CaaS) portfolio is targeted at the SMB segment and independent departments in larger organizations that need to buy cycles starting at prices less than 4 cents per hour.

All you need is a credit card; just go to the web portal, get some basic verification of your identity, and you’re provisioned “within minutes.” No minimums required, no term plans, no hidden fees.

It uses Verizon’s VMware vCloud Express-platform, so you can get your flavor of Windows or Linux without breaking a sweat.

Across the pond, Orange Business Services (www.orange-business.com) announced its “global business alliance” to provide an enterprise cloud computing solution. Orange has partnered with Cisco, EMC, and VMware under the Flexible 4 Business banner to offer end-to-end cloud computing services for enterprises.

Orange will deliver four types of pay-per-use managed services, but only one looks like a “pure” cloud offering.  You can get a full “private cloud” akin to traditional cloud services. Orange has also crammed remote and managed backup solutions, security services (anti-virus and URL filtering), and access to a hosted UC solution under the cloud.

*sigh* Marketing departments.

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