With its Enterprise Cloud Portal German Telekom subsidiary T-Systems presents its first cloud service-wide offering for corporate customers. On the portal, companies can inform about the cloud solutions from T-Systems, test them and order directly. The currently offered services include solutions for mobile device management, Dynamic Services for Infrastructure and the Enterprise Marketplace. A look at the site shows that great emphasis was placed on the compatibility with tablets.
Past the IT department
With its cloud portal T-Systems want to enable also non-technical users in large companies to access specific cloud solutions. The cloud provider refers to a study by Gartner, which says that up to 2015, about 35 percent of IT spending are selected and managed outside the IT department. Be mentioned here, for example, marketing, purchasing and accounting.
Mobile Device Management
The mobile device management from the cloud should help businesses in the administration of mobile devices with different operating systems, such as iOS and Android via a standardized web platform. In addition to security settings, control access rights to functions and applications can be made. In case of loss of the device, the data can be deleted remotely. A test of the mobile device management is free for the first four weeks for up to three mobile devices.
Dynamic Services for Infrastructure
For infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) two offerings are ready: On the one hand, the „Dynamic Services for Infrastructure“ (DSI) from a hosted private cloud. Secondly, the „DSI with vCloud Datacenter Services“ as a hybrid variant. The management of the resources does the client itself via a web-based portal or using its own VMware management software. Clear pricing models to make the cost of the infrastructure transparent. Thus, for example, a server from the hosted private cloud costs from 9 cents per hour in the package „Small“. For the hybrid solution the package price for a virtual data center in the smallest version is exactly at 999,84€ per month.
The Enterprise Market Place includes, among other things, further IaaS solutions including operating systems for Linux and Windows Server, platform-as-a-service (PaaS) solutions, including Tomcat and Microsoft SQL Server as well as a growing number of software-as-a-service (SaaS) offerings like Doculife, CA Nimsoft TAXOR, TIS, WeSustain, Metasonic, ARAS, Tibco Tibbr, Sugar CRM, Microsoft Enterprise Search and Microsoft Lync. In addition, companies should therefore be given the opportunity to apply a variety of applications highly safe in need-based formats, but also can migrate to host their own applications. The full availability of the Enterprise Market Place is planned for this summer. Currently, there is already a preview on the cloud portal.
With the Enterprise Cloud Portal T-Systems summarizes his entire cloud portfolio together under one umbrella. I had analyzed „The cloud portfolio of T-Systems“ in an article for the German Computerwoche in 2011. At that time the offering was made of single and independent services. However, already at that time I came to the conclusion that T-Systems has a very well sophisticated and well-rounded cloud portfolio. This can be seen now in the consolidated Enterprise Cloud Portal. From SaaS over PaaS to IaaS and other solutions for mobile devices can be found. With it T-Systems is one of the few providers that have a full cloud stack and which is now even bundled into a single portal.
Especially in the Enterprise Marketplace is a lot potential. At this year’s CeBIT, I could take a first look at it which was in my opinion at this time still in an alpha state. Some basic and necessary essential functions for an IaaS offering, automatic scalability and high-availability may be mentioned only, were still missing. But that was in March and I’m assuming that T-Systems has already made more progress here. In addition, I have already heard from a reputable source, that T-Systems/ Telekom will gradually change their cloud infrastructure to OpenStack, which will also give the Enterprise Market Place another boost in compatibility.
Where T-Systems sees an advantage for non-technical users in enterprises, should cause worry lines for IT managers. Indeed, I am also of the opinion that the IT department will become and even need to be a service broker. However, I think it is quite questionable if each department can simply run off and buy IT services externally as desired. Certainly, the blame lies with the IT departments themselves because they have built up a bad reputation over the years and are considered as slow and not innovative. I have philosophized about it here two years ago in detail (cloud computing and the shadow IT).
A certain supervisory authority in the form of a service broker is still necessary, because otherwise it is an uncontrolled proliferation of external services about which one will lose track. This can be controlled, of course, if one obtains the services from a single provider. And that is exactly the goal of T-Systems and its extensive Enterprise Cloud Portal. A customer should explicitly and across departments, refer the services from the T-Systems Cloud in order to avoid sprawl and to keep track. The question is whether this can be set internally by the customers that way. Because there are plenty of other services in the sea.
In the end I would like to address a topic that is currently causing a stir in the end customer market, but offers corporate customers a great advantage. The end-to-end offering of services. T-Systems is due to its situation, to be a subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom, one of the few cloud providers who can offer a service level from the services at application level or even virtual machine level in the data center, including the data line. This enables customers to maintain a continuous Quality-of-Service (QoS) and a comprehensive Service Level Agreement (SLA), which many other cloud providers can not afford.