Wholesale connectivity: what’s best for public cloud access?

On 10-01-2021
Reading time : 4 minutes

Cloud helped companies ride out the COVID-19 pandemic. It supported remote workforces, let employers empower teams with communications and collaboration platforms, and kept people entertained by streamed video while locked down at home. Demand for cloud services will keep growing, so as a telecoms operator, what wholesale connectivity is best for your business customers? 

During the pandemic, enterprises have relied on digital technologies to help them keep the lights on and reduce disruption. Cloud had a pivotal role: it supported home working and allowed companies to develop digital business models in response to changing market dynamics. 

So, it is not surprising that 2020 was a big year for cloud. The worldwide public cloud services market reached a value of $312 billion in 2020, a figure Gartner expects to reach $480 billion by the end of 2022. The overall public cloud services market grew 24% in 2020, as 9 out of 10 companies accelerated their cloud adoption in response to COVID-19. Currently 50% of workloads and 46% of data are in public clouds, figures forecast to grow this year by 7% and 8%, respectively. Cloud is very much here to stay.

What does this mean for providers of connectivity?

It means that Internet Service Providers (ISPs) and telcos have to meet the expectations of customers that are more reliant than ever on cloud services. Choosing which type of wholesale connectivity to a public cloud service has big implications for the ISP or telco’s business. It impacts the quality of service (QoS) they give to customers, and there are significant security and cost considerations too.

Which should you offer to what type of customer? It varies by the use case and the customer’s priorities, and the main options are:

1. Ethernet Virtual Private Line (EVPL). If your customers are in an industry where they use sensitive applications and they’re concerned about the security of their data and QoS, they will most likely be interested in a private connection. Ethernet Virtual Private Line (EVPL) is the most appropriate connectivity: you can ensure security and QoS by setting up dedicated connections between the PoP located closest to your customer’s virtual private network (VPN) and the PoP closest to the public cloud provider.

EVPL can also give ISPs and telcos the cost controls they need since it is charged at a monthly subscription rate, irrespective of use. This means ISPs and telcos can benefit from predictable pricing that can be tracked and cross-charged back to end customers

2. The internet. Where value-for-money is high on the list of priorities for the customer, the most appealing connectivity choice is to route via the internet. And while it is a cost-effective option, the internet remains only a best-effort service, and KPIs like round-trip delay (RTD), packet loss and jitter tend to vary significantly at peak utilization times. This results in an unpredictable and often poor experience for end-users.

What IP Transit may lack in QoS, it will make up in cost optimization: subscribing to IP Transit will serve your customers’ public cloud access needs in addition to other internet traffic needs. Capacity is not limited to a single usage and can be shared among traffic to multiple cloud providers.

And there are tools that can help improve the quality of traffic delivered via the internet, which make IP Transit services a more viable option, even for some sensitive cloud-based services.

Our wholesale options for reliable connectivity to public clouds

Orange Wholesale International provides two wholesale options that address each of these customer cases.

EVPL: QoS guarantees and agility

Our EVPL service gives ISPs and telcos a guaranteed PoP-to-PoP annual availability of 99.99% and a four-hour guaranteed time-to-restore. It comes with convenience and flexibility built-in, as with EVPL online you can purchase and manage it via our online portal, meaning easy upgrades and downgrades to the capacity you need in just a few minutes. So as your customers’ cloud traffic adapts and evolves, you can adapt your expenditure.

IP Transit with Advanced Cloud Access: balancing QoS and cost control

For cloud connectivity via the internet, we offer IP Transit, which gives you connectivity to our high-quality IP network. Our IP Transit Dynamic gives you SLAs on Round-Trip-Delay (RTD) and packet loss, defined according to your routes.

And for your customers who want higher performance guaranteed, our IP Transit Intense includes Advanced Cloud Access (ACA), with higher SLAs and limits on the effect of congestion to cloud-based services. Advanced Cloud Access offers RTD reduced by at least 5% versus traffic without ACA, which can equate to several milliseconds less and make a noticeable difference to service. For example, the RTD from South Africa to Paris could go down to 165ms with ACA. Other commitments include a Packet Loss Rate of 0.05% (divided by 2 compared to traffic without ACA), and Jitter limited to 5ms worldwide. ACA gives you a cost-effective Tier 1 internet solution tailored to critical traffic.

Our goal is to help you give your end customers the best possible digital experience. With cloud now at the heart of great digital experiences and showing no sign of slowing down, there’s never been a better time to ensure you have the best possible connectivity for cloud. 


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