As part of Communications Service Providers (CSPs) effort to arrest the decline in revenues resulting from the stiff competition from Over-the-Top (OTT) applications is to seek innovative means by which they can leverage their existing subscriber base, both consumer and retail and existing infrastructure and connecitivity solutions to roll out new services in the market place. While CSPs have made bold moves into unchartered territories such as digital services, providing music and movies as well as a whole lot of other real-time and contextual content and commercial offerings, some others are beefing up traditional services and reintroducing richer and more sophisticated offerings to their customers. Hosted cloud services is one such area that CSPs are zooming into and via partnerships with established cloud-based service providers, are bundling cloud offerings and connectivity services into a complete solution suite that meets the needs of today's enterprises.
Allot Communications, a leading global provider of intelligent broadband solutions, takes a deep dive into the worldwide evolution of managed cloud services offered to enterprises and SMBs by communication service providers (CSPs) via a survey from over 100 communication service providers (mobile, fixed and converged) globally.
Allot CloudTrends Report H2 2014 highlights the fact that many CSPs today view cloud-based software-as-a service (SaaS) enterprise applications – such as unified communications, virtualized office suite offerings, cloud storage and enterprise CRM/ERP – as a substantial revenue opportunity. At the same time, the most innovative CSPs surveyed have addressed enterprise CIO concerns around security and performance by responding with specific cloud-based visibility, control, quality of service (QoS) and security managed service offerings.The report finds that enterprise-managed services for greater visibility, control, QoS and security of cloud applications are on the rise.
Key statistics from the Allot Cloud Trends Report include:
Over 45% of CSPs are offering public cloud applications and services for enterprises ranging from basic email and storage to full-fledged unified communications, CRM and ERP solutions. According to Yaniv Sulkes, AVP of Marketing at Allot, one of the key pre-requisites for CSPs to move higher on the value chain and to be able to offer more complex offerings is the acquisition of necessary infrastructure, capabilities and talent which requires higher investment in this segment. Investment is entailed by the need for CSPs to build their internal capability to address the diverse needs of enterprise clients across cloud-based applications, where customization becomes key service differentiator.
Microsoft Office 365 is the most prevalent office suite offered by CSPs to SMBs and Enterprises with over 33% of CSPs surveyed offering the Microsoft platform. Office 365 represents over 90% of the virtualized office suite type offerings, while Google Apps offering comes in at a distant 8%.
QoS management for cloud services lags behind in adoption. Just 23% of CSPs are currently offering QoS and/or visibility solutions for mission-critical applications and only 32% of CSPs offer some form of cloud-based security service such as anti-DDoS or URL filtering.
QoS management for cloud services is much more prevalent when unified communications, Office, and Microsoft Lync are involved, indicating the need to actively manage access for these critical applications. With unified communications, 32% of CSPs offer QoS management, 48% offer Office applications and 50% offer Microsoft Lync .
Yaniv Sulkes, AVP Marketing at Allot Communications
Workforce productivity and mobility needs are causing CIOs to reevaluate their network infrastructure and operations. At the same time, CSPs are responding by evolving their SMB and enterprise cloud services to reach beyond classic connectivity and IT solutions traditionally provided. The market trends surfaced in our report reflect what we are seeing with our CSP and enterprise customers. CSPs around the globe are increasingly delivering valueadded digital services that can help enterprises overcome their toughest adoption challenges and achieve the cost and efficiency benefits promised by the cloud.