Dr. Chenxi Wang, principal analyst at Forrester Research, said the analyst firm is seeing a fair amount of action in the Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) market among SMBs; hence Verizon's move to piggyback on Terremark while it gets its own data centers in order.
Small medical companies, computer animations firms and many SMB Software as a Service (SaaS) players are using Amazon to offer services faster than if they had to build out their own data centers.
"No one is going to build their own infrastructure anymore at this level, so they are using Amazon EC2 to provide their services," Wang said.
"What you see today may not be what we do a year from now," said Patrick Sullivan, the director of mid-tier product marketing at Verizon. "In the grand scheme of cloud computing, we're not done."
What is CaaS SMB?
CaaS SMB is one of three options from Verizon for cloud services. Its Enterprise Cloud and Enterprise Cloud Plus Managed Services, run out of Verizon's own data centers, are for larger organizations looking for integration with existing management tools and better security and service-level agreements (SLAs). All three services run on VMware.
With CaaS SMB, available immediately, businesses can get started with a credit card. Using Verizon's Web portal, they can order compute resources on demand and pay for just what they use. No minimum commitment or contracts are required, unlike how the Enterprise Cloud service engages the customer with specialist sales, engineering teams, written documentation and contracts.
In the grand scheme of cloud computing, we're not done.
Patrick Sullivan, director of mid-tier product marketing at Verizon
CaaS SMB server pricing starts at 3.7 cents per hour. This comes in a bit over Amazon Web Services' (AWS) pricing, which starts at $0.02 per hour, and Rackspace, which starts at $0.015 per hour.
Forrester's Wang says it looks like Verizon is offering more management and reporting functionality on top of its IaaS cloud. "This could make the use of the cloud a bit easier for SMBs," she said via email.
CaaS SMB supports all major operating systems and also offers server cloning, which lets organizations make a carbon copy of any server for backup, development version control or fast deployment of additional capacity into load-balanced virtual Web farms.
On the security front, Verizon said companies can create or delete firewall rule sets on demand and work with Verizon to tailor a specific security program to meet their individual needs, something AWS does not offer.
Jo Maitland is the Executive Editor of SearchCloudComputing.com. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.