QTS Realty Trust announced at Cisco Live this week that it is now offering solutions built on Cisco Intercloud Fabric. QTS has a longstanding relationship with Cisco; it’s Infrastructure-as-a-Service is already Cisco-powered, so joining Intercloud is a natural progression.
Intercloud is essentially a federated cloud, with Cisco acting as a neutral traffic cop of sorts as these disparate cloud providers hook up on what it calls the Intercloud Fabric. Applications can move between clouds in the Intercloud Fabric, and the security framework comes along for the ride.
Cisco is making progress in becoming a key federation point thanks to its focus on the network. There's a desire for federation in the market, according to the company, because it helps different clouds compete and extend, but providers have been hesitant to federate for the sake of federation alone. Cisco is acting as a trusted gateway for enterprise cloud activity and keeping security consistent across clouds within its fold.
QTS offers cloud services in what it calls the 3 Cs portfolio: C1 is wholesale, C2 retail colo, and C3 cloud and managed services. It also recently boosted its cloud offerings with the acquisition of Carpathia Hosting, a big player in the government space. The company has a big stake in secure, compliant solutions, and Cisco Intercloud gives it capabilities to extend beyond its provider cloud securely. QTS can offer extended, validated services easily and deliver SLA commitments.
In terms of service providers, there are over 30 Intercloud members, with a few other notables in the data center world being Sungard Availability Services and Peak 10. Other members include big tech vendors, systems integrators, and end user enterprises. Cisco recently invited cloud application providers to the Intercloud party.
Intercloud also acts as a selling point for Cisco to come in and help service providers build their clouds. Joining Intercloud is a perk from building an IaaS offering on Cisco, as one smoothly leads into the other. Cisco has been bulking up its enterprise private cloud capabilities through acquisitions of Metacloud, and, most recently, Piston Cloud Computing.
"As our customers' IT needs continue to evolve, QTS is dedicated to elevating our hybrid cloud offering and providing the most flexible, scalable IaaS solutions available to support their applications," said Frank Eagle, vice president of business development at QTS, in a release. "Integrating Cisco Intercloud Fabric into our solution portfolio is one way that we are acting on that dedication."
QTS wrote on its blog about the three big lessons service providers have learned about cloud. Lock-in is bad; solving business problems is the main driver; security and integration are the big pain points. With enterprise cloud, don’t be a walled garden but be secure. They are elements that often contradict one another, but that's a contradiction Cisco is hoping to address with its Intercloud strategy.