Enterprise applications and the data they require are moving off on-premises IT infrastructures and into the cloud at a rapid clip. But to do so effectively will require the increased use of network edge storage, according to a new whitepaper from 451 Research, titled “Getting Competitive at the Edge.”
In the next two years, the percentage of organizations who deploy the majority of their workloads on on-prem IT systems will drop from 46% to 21% — less than half the current rate, according to 451 Research. Meanwhile, the percentage of organizations for whom the majority of workloads are in the public cloud will nearly double from 9% to 17%. Enterprise workloads are moving and, as a consequence, so is data storage.
That’s a huge shift in a very short time. But if those projections are to come true, the enterprise will need to take advantage of the edge, as 451 Research points out in the report:
The cloud’s promise of scalability and reduced cost appeals to organizations looking to keep up with the pace of the hybrid cloud world. What they can’t afford is cloud’s unpredictable performance and egress costs. With the growth of endpoints beyond the data center and out to the edge, new approaches are allowing organizations to keep data close to users, optimize efficiency and capitalize on the power of the edge for success.
— 451 Research, Getting Competitive at the Edge
Those performance issues, in particular, are caused by the enormous distances between cloud data centers and customer sites. ClearSky’s solution is to cache hot data on-prem and both hot and warm data in a point of presence at the metro edge no more than 120 miles away. And while ClearSky has had a hybrid service model for years, the market is moving towards our position. And it’s not just analysts and other thought leaders who are coming around to our way of thinking.
Big Clouds are also Working with the Edge
As we’ve noted recently, even the big storage clouds are recognizing the need for the edge to provide high-performance cloud services. Amazon and Microsoft are focusing on the Internet-of-Things, with AWS rolling out AWS IoT SiteWise and Microsoft Azure following in short order with Microsoft IoT Edge. Now Google’s getting in on the edge, but from a gaming perspective.
At the Game Developer’s Conference in March, Google announced Stadia, an on-demand streaming platform that will deliver gameplay across the internet. To ensure that lag isn’t a factor, Google is deploying 7,500 edge nodes around the globe so that game data and processing happens as close to the player as possible.
Read the full Business Impact Brief from 451 Research: Getting Competitive at the Edge
With all three of the biggest cloud service providers making strong moves on the edge, it’s clear they see the direction that enterprise data storage and application delivery are going and want to make sure they don’t get shut out.
ClearSky customers are certainly enjoying the benefits using the cloud combined with the edge for primary storage, backup and DR. However don’t take our word for it. Listen to Nick Bruno, CEO of Barrister Digital Services, a legal e-discovery services firm that uses ClearSky to store, protect and provide access to sensitive client data.
“I saved on capital expenditures [with Clearsky Data], and it’s flexible enough to where I only pay for what I use,” Bruno said. “The encryption aspect of the backup and the disaster recovery has been a huge plus.”
As Bruno points out, application performance isn’t the only reason to make the edge part of your IT infrastructure. Business continuity in the form of nearly instant data recovery is key to most enterprises. By combining an on-prem cache, a presence in a data center at the metro edge and the public cloud, ClearSky Data has made data protection an automatic process that’s built into the storage service. As a result, ClearSky can deliver an RPO (recovery point objective) of essentially zero seconds and an RTO (recovery time objective) measured in minutes.
Read about how ClearSky customers have benefited from achieving Backup Independence
Finally, there’s the cost savings the enterprise can enjoy by using ClearSky’s hybrid cloud service. Not only does it move the cost from CapEx to OpEx, but it enables the customer to pay for only the cloud data capacity that is needed at any given time without worrying about hidden egress or other charges. ClearSky customers typically save at least 50% on the total cost of ownership for storage compared to their prior, on-prem model.
The public cloud is a powerful technology that’s already reshaping the way enterprises approach and architect their IT infrastructure. But only by pairing it with the edge can they realize the full promise of what public cloud has to offer.