The data centre threat and opportunity for telecoms carriers

Telecoms carriers need to make major changes to their data centre strategies if they are to remain competitive in the face of strong offerings from independents, according to Ovum.

In a new report, the independent telecoms analyst states that carriers need to learn lessons from data centre independents, which are viewed by many businesses as more agile, innovative and receptive to new trends, including the fast-growing migration to cloud services.

Mike Sapien, ovum analyst and author of the new report, believes that carriers need to up their game if they are to remain major players and become significant providers of cloud services.

He said: “Data centres have traditionally been used by carriers for basic hosting and collocation purposes. However their role has taken on a new importance with the advent of cloud-based services and virtualisation, and has changed to address this emerging demand.

“Independent data centre operators are winning business in this market and are building expertise. They represent a formidable challenge to carriers, who will need to up their game quickly, if they are to keep pace.”

According to Sapien, the independents are impressing businesses by showcasing the newest and best technology and systems, as well as introducing them to advanced data centre features and some of the highest quality facilities.

He said: “This has become one of the critical capital and investment challenges. Carriers need more focus in this area and are losing ground to independents as a result. However if they adapt some of the strategies of the independents to have global reach they can make it back and have a place with the major data centre and cloud service providers.”

Sapien believes carriers should also capitalise on existing customer relationships and channels, as this is where they have the advantage over independents. He added: “Carriers have many more strong relationships with large multi-nationals than the independents, who find this area a major challenge and disadvantage.

“In addition the government and education sectors are traditionally strong markets for large carriers and many organisations are now considering a move to hosted and cloud services. Carriers should take advantage of existing relationships, create new ecosystems and partnerships within their data centre portfolio and show clients that they can meet their needs.”

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