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Cloud Offerings Grappling With QoS — Report

By Charlene O'Hanlon
August 20, 2010 - News

The cloud is making it easier for companies of any size to add on services without adding on to their infrastructure. But quality of service remains a hot-button issue for customers – an Achilles' heel that proponents of on-premise technology will continue to exploit, according to research firm Research and Markets.

In its latest report, “Cloud-Computing Quality of Service in Perspective," Resarch and Markets notes that cloud providers should expect and be prepared to counteract the fear, uncertainty and doubt that on-premise supporters are generating regarding cloud computing. QoS is a major arrow in their anti-cloud quiver.

“Public cloud providers claim superiority over on-premise IT infrastructures on two fronts: cost and QoS," noted the firm. “On-premise IT supporters counter-attack at both levels, but the brunt of their offensive focuses on QoS. Public cloud providers should expect the criticism (and FUD) to continue in its intensity."

Service-level agreements for the public cloud, in particular, are easy fodder for the anti-cloud crowd, according to the report. “The market is slow to trust that public cloud service providers will deliver on their RASS (reliability, availability, serviceability and security) promises." Right now the public cloud lacks any standard SLAs, so most companies using cloud services are opting for a private-cloud setup and even as SLAs improve in the public setting, “those with QoS requirement levels for which public clouds cannot cater will keep to private clouds (including shared or virtual private clouds, or both)," according to the report.

Public-cloud providers also are grappling with issues of security – or, at least, customer perceptions of security. “Security concerns are the most important obstacle to public cloud adoption, along with concerns related to regulatory compliance and data governance," the report stated. “However, public cloud risk can be managed like any other risk. It requires vendors, users, auditors and governments to cooperate — a process that has started but will prove slow-moving."

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