Access networks are fundamental to superior cloud experiences

As a complement to the fourth annual update of the Global Cloud Index, or GCI (see media release), we’ve once again included the Cloud Readiness Supplement. According to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (or NIST), which is an agency of the U.S. Department of Commerce, one of the five essential characteristics of cloud computing is broadband access.

  • Broad network access: Capabilities are available over the network and accessed through standard mechanisms that promote use by heterogeneous thin or thick client platforms (e.g., mobile phones, tablets, laptops, and workstations). See complete NIST Cloud definition.

The Cloud Readiness Supplement provides a recommended set of access requirements to support a range of cloud services (both individually and concurrently).

See more about cloud service requirements in the complete GCI report.

Extending the reach and reliability of fixed and mobile networks are essential for the continued adoption of cloud computing services and applications. Consumers expect to be able to communicate with friends as well as stream music and videos any time and any place. Business users require reliable access to business communications along with mobile solutions for videoconferencing and mission-critical customer and operational management systems.

Globally, service providers around the world are making investments in their infrastructures to improve not only performance, but also customer experiences. Based on our analysis of nearly 150 countries, here are tangible proof points that summarize the results of service provider network improvements:

  • Last year (2013), 79 countries met the single advanced application criteria for fixed networks, this year (2014), that number grew to 109 countries.
  • Last year (2013), 42 countries met the intermediate single application readiness criteria for mobile networks, this year (2014), that number grew to 52 countries.
  • Increased cloud provider IPv6 deployments have had a positive impact on IPv6 content and its availability. From October 2013 to October 2014, there has been nearly a 33-percent increase in the number of websites that are IPv6-capable.

Would you like to better understand your country’s cloud readiness (and compare it to other countries)? Try the Cisco Cloud Readiness Tool. This tool provides details on the regional and country-level cloud readiness as measured by network performance indicators: download (DL) and upload (UL) speeds in kilobits per second (kbps) and latency in milliseconds (ms). The ability to support not just a single application, but multiple and concurrent applications by each country, can also be viewed through this interactive tool. Remember, access networks matter – they’re your only route to the cloud.

Tweet us @CiscoVNI if you have any questions or comments. Follow our Twitter conversation with #CiscoGCI for the most up-to-date information about the Global Cloud Index.



Thomas Barnett, Jr.

Director, SP Thought Leadership

Worldwide Service Provider Marketing Group