Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Chapter 1: What you need to know about cloud computing - Iaas, Paas, SaaS

What’s inside a cloud?

Imagine you could easily pick out, which cloud telephony vendors you needed to speak to according to your hardware or software requirements, simply because you understood how the cloud was structured and the prime benefit each part presented.
It’s not impossible…
A previous blog gave a brief definition of cloud computing.  The next question to tackle is “What actually makes up the cloud”.  Once you have an understanding of cloud structure, it will be far easier for you to absorb, which cloud telephony players you need to talk to in order to replace different ‘in-house’ or ‘on-premise’ systems and equipment. 

Friday, 13 May 2011

Introduction to cloud telephony: Part 1 - What is cloud telephony?

Google cloud telephony and your search is likely to return a whole raft of products, definitions and services that aren’t altogether similar – services you can buy or build, hosted applications, cloud communications, VoIP. The list is long and varied, but what does it really mean?  How can you tell a cloud service from any other telephony service?

Inspired by an Infoworld article five big questions about cloud computing the following five key points define a true cloud telephony service. These ‘checklist’ items apply to all forms of telephony-based applications, such as IVR systems, contact centre platforms and PBXs.

  • Self-service – the ability to access the telephony service you want, from anywhere you want, at any time you want, through the Internet.
  • Commodity pricing – taking advantage of on-demand resources, service providers have reduced costs and can pass these on to customers in the form of pay-as-you-go or pay-for-what-you-use pricing deals.
  • Transparent scalability – the telephony service can scale seamlessly to accommodate peak call volumes, business growth or the use of resource intensive features.
  • Shared infrastructure –  the ability to share compute resources through virtualization has fuelled the cloud revolution by reducing cost.  It also frees the customer from being tied to proprietary telephony hardware or installed software.
  • Machine addressability – placing the ability to tailor telephony applications into the hands of customers, through the provision of APIs.

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Why gateways are ‘how to’ answer to life, the universe …and Your problems

In the realm of digital communications, you could say that gateways are a necessary evil.

[By the way; that’s a gateway as distinct from a router, Proxy server, or some form of gatekeeper or firewall function at an entry/exit point to the network.]

Sure, gateways aren’t wicked or malevolent – like vampires. Come to think of it, though, if it wasn’t for vampires, neither Peter Cushing nor Christopher Lee, not to mention Buffy (who polished off many a vampire), would’ve had much of a career. You’d probably think they’d be inclined to say, “Evil is good!”

So gateways are a necessary evil, which means they’re a good thing. Let’s face it, nobody buys a gateway, because they want to. Gateways are purchased because they are needed. Gateways are the vampire slayers of the netherworld of communications. Gateways are purchased, because somebody, somewhere, in their own particular universe, has a problem to solve – because they are necessary. That’s a truism (close to being a fact). But, what’s the problem?

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Chapter 1: What you need to know about cloud computing - What is cloud computing?

On a clear day, I can see for miles

If cloud telephony has caught your attention you might be asking “What exactly is cloud telephony?” or “Why should I opt for cloud telephony?” and crucially, perhaps, “Why should I care?”

These are all good questions (to be addressed in later blogs), but first a more fundamental question must be answered – what is cloud computing? Because understanding the broad concept will help you absorb the essentials of cloud telephony and the benefits it can bring to you.