Intel over the years got a lot of mileage out of its well-known "Intel Inside" campaign that highlighted the processor technology running PCs. Now the giant chip maker is looking to a similar program to grow its presence in the cloud.
Intel officials on Jan. 15 are unveiling the company's "Powered by Intel Cloud Technology" initiative to give businesses that are looking to move workloads to the cloud a clearer idea of the underlying technology powering those cloud instances before they buy any services. The company is partnering with 16 cloud service providers (CSPs) around the world who will use the badge to give customers some guidance as they make their cloud choices.
In addition, the chip maker is integrating its Intel Cloud Finder online search engine, which enables organizations to find CSPs that use Intel technologies and can meet the criteria needed for the workloads they're moving to the cloud.
The goal of the program is to enable CSPs to be clearer about the underlying technology in their cloud computing environments, and to give organizations—including those moving into the cloud for the first time—greater transparency when making decisions on what they need and where they will go, according to Jason Waxman, vice president of Intel's Data Center Group and general manager of its Cloud Platform Group.
"[Businesses] are sort of lost in a sea of choices," Waxman told eWEEK, comparing choosing the best cloud infrastructure for the workloads to shopping for the best car for their needs. "They want greater visibility into what they're deploying their workloads on."
Heterogeneous cloud infrastructure environments can have variations in performance of 40 to 60 percent, he said. Given that, businesses need better clarity of the technology their workloads will be running on to ensure they get the right performance for their jobs. For example, for some organizations, a few extra seconds getting onto their Web sites could results in lost business. Thirty-three percent of users will abandon a page and go somewhere else if a response time takes 6 seconds, he said.
When Website Shopzilla speeded up the page loading time, revenues increased between 7 and 12 percent.
"If you're too slow, people will go to another site," Waxman said.
For CSPs, the program will mean opportunities to grow revenues through differentiated services, he said. In addition, Intel will work with CSPs on direct marketing campaigns and co-marketing activities.
The Powered by Intel Cloud Technology program is an outgrowth of a partnership the company announced in September 2013 with cloud service provider Amazon Web Services (AWS). With that collaboration, AWS instances that exclusively use Intel's Xeon processors can now use the "Intel Inside" brand. AWS officials also put the latest Xeon processors into its data center systems.
Among the CSPs Intel is working with are Rackspace, Expedient, NxtGen, Canopy, Savvis and Selectel.
The new initiative comes at a time when industry analysts are forecasting rapid growth in the cloud computing space. Intel officials cited numbers from market research firm IDC indicating that infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) revenues are expected to grow 41 percent as more organizations migrate their workloads to the cloud. IDC analysts in September 2013 said spending on public cloud services will grow from $47.4 billion in 2013 to more than $107 billion in 2017.