Cloud // Infrastructure as a Service
04:57 PM
Connect Directly
Repost This

IBM, AT&T Team On Secure Cloud Services

Business customers can opt for secure connection to IBM's SmartCloud Enterprise+ cloud services via AT&T VPN network.

IBM has teamed up with AT&T to offer a service that gives customers access to Big Blue's back-end infrastructure over the telecom giant's secure private lines.

"It's an integrated, end-to-end solution that provides access to cloud computing resources, and a secure pipe over which to access them," said Dennis Quan, IBM's VP for SmartCloud Infrastructure, in an interview. "It's going to unleash a lot of pent up demand for cloud computing because we've made the consumption of cloud a lot simpler."

IBM and AT&T plan to formally launch the service, which will be aimed at IBM's Fortune 1,000 enterprise customer base, in the first quarter of 2013.

"AT&T and IBM are delivering a new, network-enabled cloud service that marries the security and speed of AT&T's global network with the control and management capabilities of IBM's enterprise cloud," said AT&T Business Solutions CEO Andy Geisse, in a statement.

[ New security tools are popping up every day. Read RSA Launches Database Breach Prevention Tool. ]

The service is available only to customers who sign up for IBM's SmartCloud Enterprise+ service.

Quan declined to say whether customers would be charged a premium for access to AT&T's private VPN network, over which the service will run, but said that both compute and network resources available through the partnership would be sold on a "pay as you go" basis.

IBM's pitch is that the service will make it easier for enterprises to establish a secure, one-to-one connection to its SmartCloud platform, which include access to virtual machines and storage, as well as application and security services.

"When a customer requests access to these virtualized resources, the IBM back end is able to tap into AT&T's services and automatically set up all the necessary networking connections and deliver that as a single service," said Quan. "Some of these things would require an extensive amount of configuration and overhead to manually piece together in terms of networking and compute capabilities."

The partnership with AT&T is a sign that IBM wants to ramp up its presence in the cloud computing market.

Despite offering a wide range of cloud services, the company is often left out of vendor conversations that typically include Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) offerings such as Amazon Web Services and Microsoft's Windows Azure.

"We're offering a general cloud computing platform that supports enterprise applications running on a variety of platforms, Windows being one of them," said Quan. "But we're also including Linux, and other popular platforms for running applications, like higher-end Unix systems. We're providing a series of platforms that suit the large enterprise customer and the diversity of IT platforms that their applications need to run on."

Quan said IBM is committed to posting $7 billion in cloud-related sales by 2015, a year in which the company has also promised to deliver earnings per share of $20.

Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
2014 Private Cloud Survey
2014 Private Cloud Survey
Respondents are on a roll: 53% brought their private clouds from concept to production in less than one year, and 60% ­extend their clouds across multiple datacenters. But expertise is scarce, with 51% saying acquiring skilled employees is a roadblock.
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
White Papers
Current Issue
InformationWeek Elite 100 - 2014
Our InformationWeek Elite 100 issue -- our 26th ranking of technology innovators -- shines a spotlight on businesses that are succeeding because of their digital strategies. We take a close at look at the top five companies in this year's ranking and the eight winners of our Business Innovation awards, and offer 20 great ideas that you can use in your company. We also provide a ranked list of our Elite 100 innovators.
Twitter Feed
Audio Interviews
Archived Audio Interviews
GE is a leader in combining connected devices and advanced analytics in pursuit of practical goals like less downtime, lower operating costs, and higher throughput. At GIO Power & Water, CIO Jim Fowler is part of the team exploring how to apply these techniques to some of the world's essential infrastructure, from power plants to water treatment systems. Join us, and bring your questions, as we talk about what's ahead.