Light Reading

CenturyLink Takes On Amazon in the Cloud

Carol Wilson
11/5/2012
50%
50%

Eighteen months after buying cloud services provider Savvis (Nasdaq: SVVS), CenturyLink Inc. (NYSE: CTL) is launching a new business unit that will directly challenge Amazon Web Services LLC in the commodity cloud business.

savvisdirect was launched last week, offering self-service pay-as-you-go options for software, infrastructure, platform or storage clouds, all available in under 10 minutes, according to the company. (See CenturyLink Clouds Up With Savvis Buy.)

Savvisdirect was built from the ground up during the past year. It's a combination of CenturyLink's fiber optic network resources and data center infrastructure front-ended with a user interface that draws on Savvis's IT and cloud expertise, says Andrew Higginbotham, president of savvisdirect. Its services will be “competitively priced” with existing commodity cloud offers.

"This is part of a plan of both management teams and a part of the acquisition strategy to go do this," Higginbotham says. The move reflects work within CenturyLink to be more focused on IT services and to realign its sales force to sell more than network services into the broader business community.

To compete with Amazon and others that have been in the commodity cloud business much longer, savvisdirect built its user interface to be simple, robust, offer more features and provide pricing transparency, says Martin Capurro, director of product management, development and marketing.

The service offers a catalog of standard IT apps -- Microsoft Exchange, Sharepoint and more -- on a one-click basis, along with compute, storage and other standard cloud services. It also has click-to-chat with both sales and support capabilities.

"We know what people have been looking for in terms of service and support and we are making it easy for them to get that," Capurro says.

Savvisdirect is expected to be the gateway service for a more extensive range of Savvis cloud offerings, but that's not its main function. "We mostly see this as a way to reach a broader market," Higginbotham says. "CenturyLink has 1.7 million SMBs on its network and we think we can reach many more of those."

Pricing is one area where savvisdirect will look to compete, on both transparency and overall cost. Higginbotham says his firm's analysis of the market has found that many cloud service providers offer initial services that look inexpensive but layer on charges for add-ons such as email that can create "sticker shock" for small businesses that were looking to save money from using cloud services.

"We are very transparent in our pricing and, in our analysis. We are right out there competing with all of the market," he adds. "We think we have a unique value -- sales, scale and reputation."

— Carol Wilson, Chief Editor, Events, Light Reading

(2)  | 
Comment  | 
Print  | 
Newest First  |  Oldest First  |  Threaded View
Bayou Mtn
50%
50%
Bayou Mtn,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:18:02 PM
re: CenturyLink Takes On Amazon in the Cloud


A sizeable chunk of the SMBs are in the medical industry.  Does the new offer include options for HIPAA compliance?

joanengebretson
50%
50%
joanengebretson,
User Rank: Light Beer
12/5/2012 | 5:17:59 PM
re: CenturyLink Takes On Amazon in the Cloud


Interesting post Carol. There seems to be a growing recognition of the importance of the network to cloud offerings. Amazon realized that & is partnering with various network operators around the world -- including Exponential-E in the U.K. -- to add value to their cloud offerings.


Perhaps CenturyLink/ Savvis will be able to leverage the fact that the combined company can offer both cloud services and network connectivity.

Flash Poll
From The Founder
The Swedish vendor has undergone a significant transformation during the past few years, adjusting to the demands of next-generation communications companies.
LRTV Documentaries
The 3GPP's Road to 5G Standardization

4|17|15   |   4:43   |   (0) comments


Satoshi Nagata, chairman of the 3GPP's TSG-RAN group and a manager at NTT Docomo, explains the standardization process for 5G, as well as the biggest challenges and opportunities.
LRTV Documentaries
AlcaLu CTO Makes the Case for a New 5G Air Interface

4|16|15   |   3:54   |   (0) comments


Michael Peeters, CTO of wireless at Alcatel-Lucent, explains why 5G will require a new air interface to meet its diverse performance targets.
LRTV Documentaries
AlcaLu + Nokia: The New Uber-Vendor

4|15|15   |   2:42   |   (4) comments


Heavy Reading Senior Analyst Gabriel Brown discusses the technological and competitive opportunities and challenges if a merger between Alcatel-Lucent and Nokia comes to pass.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei's Data Center Power Play

4|15|15   |   6:22   |   (0) comments


Huawei has developed industry-leading energy efficiency capabilities for its indoor and outdoor data center solutions, explains Dr. Fang Liangzhou, vice president of Huawei's Network Energy product Line.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei’s Routers, Switches Get the Green Mark

4|15|15   |   2:02   |   (0) comments


TUV Rheinland's Frank Dudley explains how Huawei's routers and switches have been successfully tested by energy efficiency experts and have gained Green Mark Certification.
LRTV Documentaries
A Finn, a Frenchman & a Guy From New Jersey Walk Into a Merger...

4|15|15   |   3:17   |   (0) comments


Stop us if you've heard this one before... Light Reading CEO Founder & CEO Steve Saunders weighs in on the technical and cultural implications of a Nokia and Alcatel-Lucent merger.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Accounting for Better Solutions

4|10|15   |   02:31   |   (1) comment


Murad Yousuf, CTO at Saudi Arabia's Ministry of Finance (Dept. of Zakat & Income Tax), talks about the benefits of deploying router technology from Huawei.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
What's in Store for Huawei & DataCore?

4|10|15   |   05:44   |   (0) comments


At the CeBIT trade show in Hannover, Germany, George Teixeira, CEO of software-defined storage (SDS) specialist DataCore Software, explains why he has just signed a partnership agreement with Huawei Technologies.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Du Puts Its Faith in Huawei's Routers

4|9|15   |   3:42   |   (0) comments


Adnan Masood, director of Enterprise MS Solutions Marketing at du, the United Arab Emirates (UAE) operator also known as Emirates Integrated Telecommunications Company, explains why his company chose to use Huawei's multifunctional AR routers as part of its managed enterprise services.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Huawei Gets Active in the Data Center

4|9|15   |   3:17   |   (0) comments


With enterprise users looking to maximize the use of their data center assets, Huawei’s Chief Architect & Technical Director of IT Data Center Solutions, Bruce Su, explains how the company's six-layer active-active data center solution is eradicating the need to deploy passive, redundant data center assets.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Blue Consult & Huawei for a Better Solution

4|8|15   |   4:01   |   (0) comments


Martin Rott, CEO, and Marc Metzler, head of sales virtualization, from Germany's Blue Consult discuss their collaboration with Huawei and TrendMicro to develop a secure, scalable IT platform that can meet the needs of the most demanding enterprise users.
LRTV Huawei Video Resource Center
Beach Petroleum on eLTE & Mining

4|8|15   |   3:09   |   (0) comments


Network systems integrator Jeremy Hamlyn explains how Huawei's secure packet-based trunking communications system, eLTE, can help remote communities and companies in the mining, oil and gas sectors, deploy efficient communications networks that are perfect for video and data as well as voice.
Upcoming Live Events
May 5, 2015, Hyatt McCormick Place, Chicago, IL
May 6, 2015, Georgia World Congress, Atlanta, GA
May 12, 2015, Grand Hyatt, Denver, CO
May 13-14, 2015, The Westin Peachtree, Atlanta, GA
June 8, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9-10, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 9, 2015, Chicago, IL
June 10, 2015, Chicago, IL
September 29-30, 2015, The Westin Grand Müchen, Munich, Germany
November 11-12, 2015, The Westin Peachtree Plaza, Atlanta, GA
All Upcoming Live Events
Infographics
Network Instruments, a JDSU division, shares results from its 2015 State of the Network, a global survey on security.
Hot Topics
Verizon Scores New OTT Content Deals
Mari Silbey, Independent Technology Editor, 4/16/2015
Can WiFi Calling Find Its Voice?
Iain Morris, News Editor, 4/13/2015
Senator Proposes New 'Title X' for Net Neutrality
Carol Wilson, Editor-at-large, 4/13/2015
Nokia, Alcatel-Lucent in Merger Talks
Iain Morris, News Editor, 4/14/2015
Nokia & Alcatel-Lucent: What's Going On?
Ray Le Maistre, Editor-in-chief, 4/15/2015
Like Us on Facebook
Twitter Feed
Webinar Archive
BETWEEN THE CEOs - Executive Interviews
Data Center Interconnect, or DCI, is one of the hottest sectors in telecom currently. Since coming back to Light Reading last year, prodigal-son style, I've ...
LR CEO and Founder Steve Saunders sits down with the head of Qosmos to talk about the changing state of the art in deep packet inspection technology, including its role in SDN and NFV architectures.
Cats with Phones
Steve's Phone Click Here
Steve Saunders's personal phone.