The cloud has arguably gone a long way towards levelling the playing field when it comes to what’s available to enterprises from day one. Decades ago, only the large organisations with the resources (and the storage room) to house their own vast servers were able to compete on a global scale, but the cloud now offers this opportunity to companies of all sizes.

Whether your organisation employs 5 or 5,000 people, you can potentially have access to exactly the same resources without having to install a single server bank on-site. This is something that would have been unthought of before the turn of the century, but today, almost 42% of UK companies have taken to the cloud to handle at least a portion of their IT resources. The UK cloud adoption rate now stands at 88%.

The cloud was once perceived as little more than a buzzword to those outside of the tech bubble, but it’s now common parlance. What caused the ‘rise of the cloud’? Perhaps necessity. According to Ernst and Young, 500MB of data is generated daily through more than 83 million babies born each year. That’s a lot of data and it needs a home.

Of the various cloud computing solutions, however, one comfortably sits above all others when it comes to sheer undiluted potential. A solution that fronts a market worth $32.4 billion and one in which all the major players in the tech world have their fingers heavily invested: Infrastructure-as-a-service.

What is IaaS?

Cloud computing is not one thing and one thing alone – it’s potentially everything and infrastructure-as-a-service is quite comfortably the cloud service with the most potential for growth. As the name suggests, what the IaaS model provides is an infrastructure that hosts everything from hardware to operating systems and everything in between.

The primary benefit of an IaaS model (as opposed to software-as-a-service or platform-as-a-service solutions) is that the organisations that use them can pay on a per-use basis – by the month, week or even by the hour if they so desire.

IaaS solutions provide access to virtualised components that you can use to create your own IT platforms. This also differs from SaaS models, which simply host applications and make them available for customers and PaaS offerings, which delivers a framework for developers that they can build upon and use to create customised applications.

Why IaaS is king

IaaS is becoming increasingly popular because it allows greater access and customisation than competing cloud-based solutions, being fully self-service. It also allows businesses to purchase the resources they need when they need them without having to buy any expensive hardware. IaaS can be a more economical option for SMEs as it neatly sidesteps the expense of setting up and maintaining on-site data centres.

With an IaaS solution, you have the power to get a new product or service online in minutes rather than weeks and there is no hardware or software to maintain, freeing up your employees to do what they do best. IaaS is also comfortably the most scalable solution available, as software and hardware can be swapped out and upgraded as the company’s needs evolve. This is why so many start-ups and smaller companies prefer to use it; it offers the best of both worlds – complete control over your IT resources and the flexibility to chop and change them as you see fit.

IaaS is the most scalable solution available, as software and hardware can be swapped out and upgraded as the company’s needs evolve.

The worldwide IaaS market grew 31.3% in 2018. It is, however, an industry that’s largely governed by the whims of the top five major players, with the top five providers accounting for nearly 77% of the global market.

Direct from source

We’ve already established how an IaaS cloud architecture has opened the door for organisations at all levels to manage their infrastructure in bold new ways. But imagine if you were able to connect directly to cloud services without going through the internet. Telehouse offers access to multiple leading cloud service providers through its CloudLink service or direct connections to providers such as Amazon and Microsoft.

Amazon Web Services Direct Connect can be accessed via a private, dedicated 1 Gbps or 10 Gbps connection from Telehouse’s London Docklands campus, offering low latency and security.

Telehouse also offers direct access to Microsoft Azure using Microsoft ExpressRoute. Microsoft ExpressRoute allows customers to execute their hybrid cloud strategies using a resilient, direct and private connection to Microsoft’s range of cloud services such as Microsoft Azure and Microsoft Dynamics. Telehouse London Docklands is also the location for Microsoft’s London 2 ExpressRoute service, which provides a resilient, diverse route in London to Microsoft’s cloud services through Telehouse. This service also enables Telehouse customers to extend their reach to Azure regions and ExpressRoute locations worldwide.

With a direct IaaS cloud connection, organisations can feel that much more confident in their offerings due to lower latency, better security and almost limitless flexibility. Couple that with the costs they could save by working an industry expert such as Telehouse, that can provide the advice, the infrastructure and the on-going support, you have a solution that’s built for the future and for success.