Cloud Computing Services & Convergence for SMEs
2012.08.06   |   36 pages   |   Selling to & Supporting Business Users

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Despite the increase in the number of mobile and related services becoming available over the past few years, small and medium-sized businesses are still underserved by MNOs in terms of mobile communications products and services designed and built specifically for their use. Yet the SME market is potentially a very lucrative one, with large numbers of workers being employed in these types of enterprise across all geographic markets.

The rapid increase in ownership of smartphones and tablet devices has helped the move towards the consumerisation of IT with the merging of communications and IT products. In addition there has been increasing convergence of fixed and mobile services and a rapid increase in the availability of products and services being offered via the cloud. These trends mean that SMEs, despite their frequent lack of IT skills, can take advantage of relatively sophisticated software and services that are scalable to almost any size of enterprise, and at almost any price point they choose.

The provision of the mobile cloud is seen as a key component of mobile business propositions, although it is still at a speculative stage in many markets, and it is still unclear whether the mobile cloud is an opportunity or a threat for MNOs. In a bid to make it an opportunity, some MNOs have moved rapidly into providing cloud services, and are finding a role for themselves offering infrastructure, platforms and communications into the business community via the cloud. Many of the services on offer, however, are intended for large enterprises and multi-national companies, with offers for SMEs being more limited. A lot of MNOs have yet to commit to offering cloud propositions at all.

This report looks at the current situation in the SME market for converged and cloud propositions with a discussion and examples of how well some MNOs are addressing the opportunity. It concludes with findings and recommendations for MNOs aimed at supporting them in optimising their approach to the SME market.

Keywords: PaaS, Cloud Computing Services, Platform as a Service, Software as a Service, SaaS, Convergence SMEs. Cloud Computing Services SME, IaaS, Infrastructure as a Service, Cloud Services,

Table of Contents
1 Overview 1
2 Introduction 2
2.1 Background to the Report 2
2.2 Currency and Conversions 3
2.3 Further Questions and Feedback 3
3 Cloud Computing & Convergence - Some Definitions 4
3.1 Definition of Computing in the Cloud 4
3.1.1 Types of Cloud Service 5
3.1.1.1 Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) 5
3.1.1.2 Software as a Service (SaaS) 5
3.1.1.3 Platform as a Service (PaaS) 6
3.2 Convergence 7
3.3 SME Business Characteristics 7
4 Mobile Cloud Computing for SMEs 9
4.1 Introduction 9
4.2 Advantages 9
4.3 Disadvantages 10
4.3.1 Security 10
4.3.2 Service Level Agreements 11
4.3.3 Customisation 12
4.3.4 Connectivity 12
5 MNO Cloud Services for SMEs 13
5.1 Introduction 13
5.2 Turkcell 16
5.3 AT&T Cloud Services 17
5.4 Digicel 22
5.5 Maxis Cloud 23
5.6 NTT 25
5.7 Orange 26
5.8 Portugal Telecom 27
5.9 Swisscom 27
5.9.1 KMU Business Box 27
5.9.2 Saperion 28
5.9.3 Microsoft Office 365 28
5.10 Telecom Italia 29
5.11 Telefonica 30
5.11.1 Intel 30
5.11.2 VMware 31
5.11.3 Regional Cloud Solutions 32
5.11.3.1 Latin America 32
5.11.3.2 Spain 32
5.11.3.3 UK 33
6 Key Findings & Recommendations 34
6.1 Conclusions 34
6.2 Recommendations 35
  Appendix - Feedback Questions 37

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