Consistent, Tailored, and Reliable Performance Matters in the Cloud
by Maria Rodriguez
Cloud performance has long topped headlines and remains an important topic of conversation among cloud providers, IT organizations, and the media. As businesses increasingly use the cloud for critical production applications, the attention paid to performance levels will be long-lived. The 2013 Verizon State of the Enterprise Cloud Report revealed that businesses rated availability and performance as the most important characteristics in a cloud environment.
Since its inception, cloud performance was considered a 'best effort' proposition. However, different enterprise use-cases are forcing cloud providers to rethink the way resources are provisioned in order to provide a certain level of performance, while allowing users to select the level of performance for each virtual machine. The recently announced Verizon Cloud will do just that, opening the cloud to countless application possibilities and adaptable to all performance requirements.
Consider a department store website in mid-December. Millions of shoppers getting ready for the holiday season, and the site starts having latency issues between clicks. The delays cause frustration and force shoppers to close the browser and start their shopping cart again. While some shoppers may be up for some "déjà vu," many are not and redirect themselves to another website that works better. Every second of latency means this department store isn't making a sale. This is the living proof of an online store application requiring high-performance for its cloud applications.
However, not all applications running on the cloud require high-performance similar to the needs of electronic commerce sites. There are some applications that work well with the lowest levels and even intermittent performance, as long as it's consistent. Think about a department store, and a sales associate closing the register after a long day of business. For this purpose, he or she only needs the batch processing application to be active at the end of the shift and as long as it is posted by a certain time, it would be acceptable. There isn't a business need for this department store to pay for a high-level performance when it doesn't need it.
Cloud performance and consistency should go hand in hand. Regardless if the application requires high, low - or somewhere in between - performance levels, it always needs consistency. By providing consistency and allowing users to tailor performance levels for each application, cloud providers have the opportunity to lift limitations and open this technology to millions of possibilities, while allowing the user to take control of their environments.