I have stumbled on an interesting essay about cloud peering by Tom Hughes-Croucher and Carlos Bueno. The essay explains how cloud peering can provide better communications among cloud vendors while offering better cloud solutions to customers.
The essay has been presented at NYC Web 2.0 Expo back in 19 Nov 2009. It is about the cloud’s hidden lock-in in the form of network latency and how cloud vendors can solve that latency issues. We are not going through the technical issue of these network latency problems, but rather informing cloud users that the cloud can definitely be better for everyone.
What is the impact of network latency?
What’s all the fuss about network latency? Network latency, in layman’s term, is the time required for a packet of data to be “transported” from one location to another. This “transport time” translated into higher costs to both cloud vendors and cloud customers.
Now according Tom and Carlos, cloud vendors have put great effort in reducing the latency within their own cloud. However, between cloud vendors, data is transmitted via the open Internet, reducing performance and rising costs. The impact: Cloud customers are charged twice for the degraded service and exposing them to the infamous cloud vendor lock-in.
How those caused lock-in? Well, if a cloud user does things within a single cloud vendor, everything is cheap and fast. If you do things outside the particular vendor, everything is becoming expensive and slow.
One solution: Cloud peering
Check out this mini site about cloud peering. It’s a site administered by Tom and Carlos, presenting a map of known cloud data centers. Those cloud vendors’ data centers cluster together.
The fact that the cloud data centers are clustered opens an opportunity for cloud vendors to work out on peering agreements. This cloud peering is purposed to establish fast and cheap communications between the nearby data centers to reduce latency.
Check out the presentation about cloud peering here:
The benefits of cloud peering
The major benefit of cloud peering is that cloud customers can enjoy cloud solutions that allow them do to things better at lower costs.
For cloud vendors, cloud peering can leverage their resources, as well as offering competitive cloud services for customers. For instance, if Amazon and Google decided to go for a peering agreement, their customers can benefit cloud services quality that other cloud vendors’ customers can’t enjoy.
I have my doubts in my non-techie and non-cloud-savvy mind. One of my doubts: Will the big cloud vendors cease fire in their “cloud war” and opt for cloud peering partnership, instead?