HP had a host of cloud computing-related news to reveal at their HP Discover Frankfurt event in Germany this morning, including upgrades to HP Cloud Services, new capabilities for HP Cloud Service Automation (CSA) and HP CloudSystem. The company also took the wraps off the latest updates to the HP Global Product Authentication Service (GPAS), a cloud-based service that helps companies track down counterfeit and imitation versions of their products.
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HP Cloud Services: Ready to Compete With Amazon?
I’d argue that the biggest news are the updates to HP’s public cloud services, which fall under the HP Cloud Services umbrella. HP Cloud Compute and HP Cloud Block Storage are HP’s answer to the pay-as-you-go cloud computing models championed with great success by the Amazon Web Service (AWS) offerings Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3), respectively. Updates to the HP Cloud Application Platform as a Service (PaaS) and HP Cloud Workload Migration Services round out the HP Cloud Services announcements.
According to Ken Won, HP’s Product Marketing Director for HP Cloud Software, the company is positioning their Cloud Services platform as an integral part of their converged cloud strategy, an approach which ties together public, private, and hybrid clouds using HP cloud automation and management services.
HP Cloud Strategy: Choice, Confidence, and Consistency
“We’re trying to give our customers a consistent experience across all types of cloud offerings,” says Won. “Whether they’re using private, public, or hybrid cloud services, our approach is to focus on choice, confidence, and consistency.”
Won explained that giving customers the freedom to take an open heterogeneous approach to their cloud efforts – such as mixing and matching vendors and services – has proven to be a successful approach for HP. Won also said that HP was taking an integrated approach to cloud security, and was also providing admins consistent tools to manage their heterogeneous cloud infrastructures.
“We’re simplifying the consumption experience, and we’re also simplifying the administration experience,” Won said. “This approach will give our clients greater IT agility and streamline management of cloud resources.”
Like HP, a number of other cloud vendors are attempting to challenge Amazon's dominance of the enterprise cloud services market: Microsoft's Windows Azure, IBM SmartCloud, Oracle Cloud, and other cloud computing vendors offer a variety of public cloud services, but Amazon is the clear market leader.
Cloud Adoption: U.S. Lags Asia, Latin America
HP's updates to their cloud strategy arrive in an IT market that hasn't quite fully embraced cloud computing yet, at least according to a recent report by Tata Consulting Services. According to Tata's analysis, cloud applications currently make up only 19% of all corporate applications in the U.S., but that ratio is expected to increase to 34% by 2014. The Tata study also points out that U.S. businesses lag other countries when it comes to cloud application adoption, with only 19% of U.S. corporate applications being cloud-based, compared to "28% in Asia-Pacific and a healthy 39% in Latin American companies." Despite the information from the Tata survey, Gartner is still predicting that cloud computing will increasingly be adopted by enterprises in the years to come, estimating that worldwide Platform-as-a-Service (Paas) revenue will increase to $2.9 billion by 2016.
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