What is cloud service?
Cloud services are any resource provided on demand over the internet from the server of a cloud computing provider as opposed to be provided from a particular company’s own servers. The different cloud services are designed in order to provide easy and scalable access to services, applications and resources and thus they are entirely managed by a cloud service provider.
Types of cloud service:
- SaaS – It refers to Software as a service. It is a service distribution model in which the applications are hosted by a service provider and are made available to the consumers generally over the internet network. The consumer enjoys capability to use the provider’s applications running on a cloud infrastructure. The cloud applicationsare accessible from various client devices via a thin client interface such as a web browser.
- PaaS – It refers to Platform as a service. It is the delivery of operating systems and various associated services without requiring any download or installation, over the internet. The consumer enjoys capability to deploy onto cloud infrastructurecreated using different programming languages as well as the relative tools supported by the provider.
- IaaS – It refers to Infrastructure as a service. It involves the outsourcing of various equipment used to support operations such as hardware, storage, servers as well as networking components- all made accessible over a network.The consumer enjoys the capability of provision processing, networks, storage along with other fundamental computing resources where the consumer gains ability to deploy and run arbitrary software as well as operating systems and applications.
The benefits of Cloud Services to the operators:
Architect the cloud infrastructure- It helps the mobile service providers analyzing the VAS infrastructure in order to determine their readiness for cloud computing and also to identify the top services for a transition to cloud. The cloud services help understanding the implications of different types of cloud services and mobile content delivery models. The final result of the engagement is the pain vs. gain analysis, recommendations for the service to be moved to the cloud and a roadmap for migration to cloud computing along with a plan of required VAS improvement to implement a cloud computing environment.
Migration and Optimization Support– The cloud services help the mobile operators to migrate from a traditional environment to the cloud platform. During the process, the operator’s existing applications are optimized in order to attain a better performance and security while moving to the cloud platform.
Management of the VAS ecosystem– The management of the VAS ecosystem becomes important following the migration of the VAS services to the cloud. The managed VAS services assist in managing the overall health and performance of the VAS environment. The cloud services offer active monitoring of the VAS application and managing the cloud with deep understanding of the systems.
Some of the defined advantages of managed cloud services are:
- Well-defined, measurable service level
- In-detail monitoring and management
- Regular communication with regularly scheduled meetings and meaningful reporting mechanisms.
The cloud services mean turning the computer power into a utility that will be available to be bought or sold. In the telecommunication sector, cloud services are essentially outsourcing information. The consumers of cloud services don’t require owning any equipment or network. They rent desired usage from a network provider and consume the offered material as a service on pay or subscription basis.
Cloud services deliver ICT resources in a utility model. The main technologies enabling this are- ever-present broadband connectivity and virtualization for enhanced data center utilization. For the mobile service operators, there is an opportunity to target and reach for new revenue streams. In order to do so, they take the role of delivering ICT resources to enterprises along with the opportunity to utilize the cloud technologies and services for improving their operations.
The mobile cloud computing moves processing and data storage away from the device, delivered through web technologies:
- QOS- The QOS mechanisms in the radio access technologies for securing efficient delivery of the mobile cloud services.
- Handset and Service adaptation- Most of available customer care services require some adaptation in order to fir aptly to the mobile device characteristics and different form factors.
- Security- The information exchanged over the cloud demands privacy and confidentiality.
- Cloud Provider & MNOs cooperation- The mobile access networks pose greater challenging requirements than the fixed networks for delivering the cloud services
How should the operators take advantage of cloud services to build a profitable business?
The service operators provide telecommunication services and thus, are established entities in every country they operate service. During the initial days of cloud computing, the homogeneous service offerings were considered ideal, the mobile operators’ local presence was considered to be handicapped but gradually, it has turned out to quite opposite. The mobile operators should make their local/regional presence a key component of their cloud business’ strategy. Particularly, a key area is for the cloud applications to be customized for those SMEs which haven’t heavily invested in IT until now. The cloud service should not be simply a copy of the general application designed to serve the needs of the large enterprises but they should also take into account their business characteristics & conditions. Furthermore, what else is required is keeping a close eye on the latest trends in cloud computing.
The mobile cloud service is a growing business arena with tremendous growth opportunities. The telecom operators are far behind in the cloud computing business and they still require a decent amount of growth to catch up with its pace and utilize the opportunities being shelled by it. Cloud computing extends multiple ways to relish growth for the mobile service operators and thus the operators are free to choose different lanes through cloud services depending on their individual interests and targets.