interview


Shaping the cloud to meet business needs

Costas Leonidou, Engineer for Value Added Services, Planning and Development Networks at CYTA

Costas Leonidou, Engineer for Value Added Services, Planning and Development Networks at CYTA will be giving a presentation at May’s Telecom Cloud Services Summit in Berlin. Telecoms.com talked to him about running a successful cloud services business within a telecom operator environment.

Cloud means many things to many people. What is your definition?

For me, cloud means something fuzzy and dynamic that can hide complexity. Ideally, a cloud in a computing context offers robust functionality when required within the capacity needed.

Where do you believe the greatest opportunities are in terms of cloud technology adoption?

I see great opportunities for cloud telecoms adoption in government and public utilities applications/services/infrastructure. I believe that the cloud environment is ideal for hosting large computing environments such as government applications. There will be economic as well as operational advantages to using the cloud model for governmental and/or public authorities as well.

Are you aware of any challenges to the adoption or deployment of cloud services?

As always, the greatest challenge is choosing the right applications to use. In the case of cloud, the correct applications should not only fit the cloud concept but also meet user specifications in terms of functionality, availability, reliability, scalability and, of course, cost.

Should cloud primarily be used to optimise in house processes – such as optimising your data?

It really depends on the case. Before adopting a cloud approach, organizations need to decide on the scope of the project. A decision could be made based on strategic and functional requirements, as well as cost, before deciding how far to go with a cloud implementation.

Which key markets do you see cloud as a good fit for? Is it restricted to vertical markets?

Government and public administration services are ideal markets for cloud. In addition to that, commodities services such as web hosting, email, storage, office suites, collaboration and productivity tools could also be considered key markets.

How important are partnerships in the cloud space?

Partnerships are always important. A good partner’s total offering should increase the overall value of any project, including cloud.

With regards to technology – is cloud a mature model?

I would argue that cloud is still an evolving computational model, although recent developments have seen some standards and benchmarking becoming available. Maybe in a few years we’ll see the number of standards increase and become more robust. The good thing about the current evolutionary situation is that it allows for the expression of flexibility and creativity.

With regards to business model – how does cloud change the game?

It’s clear that cloud has introduced new business models to the market. The philosophy behind it is one of allowing organisations to focus on core business by removing the burden of managing IT and telecoms issues. The concept moves one step further by facilitating organisations in the optimisation of costs and benefits through the enhanced used of IT resources within the business.

Which companies do you see as pioneers in cloud adoption?

Start-up and newly founded companies often use cloud services to minimise investment in IT resources while scaling IT infrastructure to meet their business needs as quickly as possible. It’s easier for organisations like these to adopt the cloud model as, unlike established businesses, they have no legacy systems to migrate to the new environment.

Costas Leonidou is speaking on the development of cloud services businesses within a telecom operator environment on the first day of the event.

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