Yesterday, fellow Channels blogger Alex Krasne hosted a live Channels Chat video broadcast called Tapping the SMB Opportunity in the Cloud: An Interactive Discussion for Service Providers.
During the broadcast, Steve Hilton, Principal Analyst at Analysys Mason, and Ellen Berlan, Director, Global Service Provider SMB at Cisco shared cloud trends and offered advice on how Service Providers can capitalize on the growing market within SMBs. Steve also offered several recommendations, from how Service Providers need to approach the growing cloud market, to the ways in which Service Providers can launch a cloud offering.
For those of you who prefer to read about the broadcast, we have a text summary below with timestamps to identify key topics. We also have Ellen and Steve’s answers to audience questions submitted via Twitter. Read More »
Over the past several years, a lot of vendors have established a variety of designations aimed at giving channel partners a demonstrable seal-of-approval for specific technologies or market expertise. In a world where channel partners need to differentiate against their competitors on something more than price, these “specializations” or “specialties” go a long way towards helping customers weed through the various IT offerings based on training, experience, and oftentimes customer satisfaction. Typically, all three of those qualities are necessary in order to “get badged,” as the partners often call it.
But how important should those badges be to you, as the IT decision-maker in a small business? The truth is, it depends.
If you are using advanced applications, and require high levels of security, run complex databases and are heavily dependent on things like CRM tools, unified communications capabilities and such, then I would say that the case for using a specialized partner is a strong one.
Two reports issued by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) in the past few months reveal that concerted efforts of both governments and service providers are combining to make broadband more accessible and affordable, at least for developing countries.
Let’s look at the most recent report first.
According to the 2010 ICT Price Basket report, broadband costs around the world have dropped approximately 52 percent between 2008 and 2010 — compared to a 22 percent drop in prices for mobile cellular services.
The public Internet is pervasive. It’s an essential ingredient to the way many of us choose to live, work, play and learn. When this amazing resource is viewed through the perspective of mainstream users, the path that led us here may seem unimaginable.
It’s an example of open innovation and creative collaboration, with a common cause that was shared by determined pioneers. The Internet Society has published a brief history that starts with the following story introduction:
“The Internet has revolutionized the computer and communications world like nothing before. The invention of the telegraph, telephone, radio, and computer set the stage for this unprecedented integration of capabilities. The Internet is at once a world-wide broadcasting capability, a mechanism for information dissemination, and a medium for collaboration and interaction between individuals and their computers without regard for geographic location.”