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back to article Why SoftLayer can't lift IBM into the clouds

There are only three major cloud companies, and try as it might, IBM isn't going to change that in the near-term with its acquisition of SoftLayer. This is because the three major public clouds – Amazon Web Services, Windows Azure, and Google Compute Engine – are each supported by a consumer internet giant. These internet …

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Anonymous Coward

IBM bought ..

customers. Plain and simple. Just like when SalesForce bought Heroku .. Providing public clouds is a difficult undertaking and it takes a long time to develop a customer base. Oh, sure, there are plenty of signups, but over 50% of those generally never come back and the remainder contains just a few percentage points of actually paying customers. So, it is more cost effective to buy somebody else that actually has paying customers than try to spend billions in marketing and sales to woo tightwads. Totally financial move and always necessary if you want to stay in the cloud game and entered late. Dell saw the reality and opted out. HP's effort is valiant but they are so far behind, it may not matter. If you haven't watched the TechEd 2013 videos on the secret stuff Microsoft is revealing to the public this week, you don't know the state of the game. And this cloud game is changing rapidly.

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Bronze badge

Re: IBM bought ..

Yeah and it can start pushing IBM servers into Softlayer whether they are the plane old 1u servers to anything specialised such as mainframes which they can now co-locate in more locations than IBM could before.

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Anonymous Coward

Ticking the boxes in an RFT

This isn't about market share, it's about being able to tick the 'cloud' box in an RFT. IBM don't want to be in the position of having to invite a potential competitor into the bid process so therefore they need a credible offering of their own. It doesn't have to be the best or biggest, just enough so that it ticks the box.

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This is also why vmware is dead, dead, dead

interesting that ibm is making the acquisition and I agree that it's for customers. HP is not relevant here at all, but the big kicker is that VMware isn't even a blip here. VMware and their new hybrid thingy isn't in the same league as even Rackspace. VMware is officially, now Novell. If you have vmw stock, sell it now.

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Re: This is also why vmware is dead, dead, dead

No, VMWare is dead 'cause you can do most of what VMWare does with other software. Novell at least made tons of money from proprietary software before MS bought their customer base away from them (okay, in addition to the world's worst marketing).

Most companies / governments have no intention of doing more "cloud storage" than email and offsite backup. The companies that might try cloud storage are those who use a NAS device now -- but IBM doesn't do small businesses, nor accounts that bill less that $1 million a year.

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Anonymous Coward

Internal IT utilization....

"each of these clouds is supported by a vast amount of guaranteed internal IT utilization," So, according to this article, IBM does not have internal needs? Cmon, IBM is a research company and its not just into PCs, mainframes or servers. With intelligent information processing, and the likes of 1000's of Watsons running, thats guaranteed to require huge resources.

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Bronze badge

Damn

So now softlayer will start to be more expensive, worse quality, etc.

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Anonymous Coward

peon

The stupid-funny thing is that "cloud" was the old Viseo symbol for "the Internet". At some point some dimbulb decided to make a marketing slogan out of it, consolidating and recycling a bunch of ideas that are either being done (for the last 20 years in some cases) or never caught on. Worse yet, IT management seems to like the phrase.....

IBM needs to do what HP did -- come to terms with the fact that a major restructuring and just tell investors that it will take years to pull off. Right now, they've done every trick to prop up the numbers they give Wall Street, but the structure of the thing has been badly weakened in the process. Restructure idea #1 is to change a culture that was built on mainframes and long-term employees, but now must cope with 75% contractor staff working on PC-based technology.

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