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Ethernet’s growing role: From the ground to the cloud

April 22, 2013

Camille Mendler   

Head of Enterprise Verticals at Informa Telecoms & Media

It is our pleasure to have Camille Mendler from Informa Telecoms & Media (@Informatm) share her thoughts with us in our first video blog. Camille talks about growth drivers in the ICT space, what’s revving up the numbers in the revenue streams, changing dynamics of business needs and the opportunities in its wake. Happy watching.
You can read the transcript below.

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My name’s Camille Mendler. I run enterprise and cloud research at Informa Telecoms & Media. I’m based in London and I’ve been an analyst for about ten years. Today I’d like to talk to you about really where growth is happening and change in the communications market and its two very inter-related areas and they are carrier ethernet and cloud computing.

So I’ve been watching the evolution of the cloud computing market and the carrier ethernet market for a number of years, working with enterprises, service providers and also equipment vendors- so looking at the entire ecosystem and these two technologies, this group of technologies are coming closer and closer together. Recently we did some work with a number of service providers asking them what was really driving growth in their revenue streams and two things came up really high on the list and they were carrier ethernet and cloud, and related to that of course, is the drive for datacenter to datacenter interconnect. So what’s transformational in the ethernet market is it’s less a story now about migration to enterprise from enterprise TDM to carrier ethernet, but new applications driving communications investment. So for the transition of the ICT wallet share to a virtualized environment, service providers and enterprises are increasingly looking at investments in cloud computing that are of a completely different nature so a number of enterprises have decided to minimize their datacenter infrastructure and work with third parties and to make these different infrastructures  work together you need not just on-demand digital resources from the cloud but you need also support from on- demand communications. And that’s where ethernet comes in. It is the most appropriate, efficient, dynamic communications mechanism to distribute and consume and facilitate the consumption of digital assets.

A lot of the work that we’ve been doing is looking at new vertical industries and how they’re transforming their own communications infrastructure and again bandwidth needs are growing and ethernet is finding a strong role. Let me give you an example: We’ve done lot of work in the oil &gas industries. We’ve done work in utilities. And for all of these industries which you might describe as blue collar industries they’re not considered quite as often as financial services for their low-latency needs but these industries also have enormous bandwidth needs and data processing needs that are growing and growing digital oil fields, smart grid type of environments where ethernet and indeed cloud computing work together very well indeed. And the surveys that we have done with those organisations in those types of blue collar industries demonstrate some very strong priorities which are to simplify  their communications infrastructure  and manage growth more effectively with a work force that is not necessarily technologically literate so simplicity and flexibility are primary primary needs. Now for companies like Tata Communications that are playing both in the communications environment and the digital asset trading space shall we say in cloud computing there are some enormous opportunities that I think lie beyond the industries that one usually thinks about as the major consumers of communications services. Yes we care about financial services, yes we care about manufacturing. But the market is growing in new industries that, or not new industries, but industries that at least have been, perhaps not considered, as ICT literate and the transformation of ICT infrastructure and business needs are changing to allow a number of new industries to consume services like carrier ethernet.
Any buyer of communication services today seeking the right type of supplier for digital asset, distribution and consumption services be it ethernet or cloud has to be very very careful in a very crowded marketplace and the only issues that really matter are: simplicity and flexibility. Absolute clarity in terms of commitments, in terms of performance, security, the flexibility and survivability of the communication services must continue to be the priorities in buying new services. And even though something like cloud computing might seem new and challenging , fundamentally when you look at a contract, when you scratch below the surface it is these fundamental issues that have not changed.

And my suggestion to the market of buyers and suppliers is to continue on clarity and being rational and clear in explaining what is on the table.

I really like talking with people but I don’t like doing it via email. It’s one of my big hates. So if you ever want to talk to me or get hold of me there’s one really easy way other than the phone and that’s via twitter. It is the best way to communicate, the most dynamic and I invite you to get hold of me and have a chat with me on twitter at @cmendler. Thank you!