Mike Vizard

Mike Vizard has covered IT for more than 25 years, and has edited or contributed to a number of tech publications including InfoWorld, eWeek, CRN, Baseline, ComputerWorld, TMCNet, and Digital Review. He currently blogs for IT Business Edge and contributes to CIOinsight, The Channel Insider, Programmableweb and Slashdot. Mike blogs about emerging cloud technology for Intronis.
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Recent Posts

How IT service providers can ride the winds of economic change

Posted by Mike Vizard on May 21, 2015 1:23:22 PM

Depending on the macroeconomic trends that exercise the most influence at any given moment, IT spending forecasts launched at different times in the same year can yield different views on where IT spending it headed.

Conflicting findings

For example, a new survey of 1,507 business and IT executives released by CompTIA finds that on average U.S. companies plan to increase IT spending by 5.4 percent in 2015. That study comes on the heels of a revised IT spending forecast from Gartner that suggests global IT spending will decline primarily because of changes to the value of the U.S. dollar.

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Topics: IT Services Trends

Focus on open source software changes IT services dynamic

Posted by Mike Vizard on May 19, 2015 11:13:24 AM

Regardless of whether it makes financial sense or not, IT organizations of all sizes have adopted an open source first mantra. Rather than spend their money on commercial software, they’ve made it clear they would prefer to throw labor at their enterprise software challenges. After all, not paying for commercial software enables those organizations to keep more IT staff on the payroll.

That’s not necessarily the wrong decision. By investing in labor, those organizations get to retain  software expertise at a time when every company is becoming a software company to one degree or another.

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Topics: IT Services Trends, Cloud Industry and Technology

Tests find Microsoft trumping AWS in cloud storage performance

Posted by Mike Vizard on May 14, 2015 1:48:00 PM

Recent research has suggested that while the gap between Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Microsoft is still fairly wide, Microsoft has been gaining traction. Now Nasuni, a provider of cloud storage gateways, has put out a new report that might in part explain why this is happening.

Results of cloud storage tests

For the past three years Nasuni has published a series of cloud storage tests. This year, those tests were run on Microsoft Azure Blob Storage, Amazon Simple Storage Service (S3), and Google Cloud Storage clouds. For the first time, Nasuni reports that Microsoft Azure has bested AWS across all those tests.

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Topics: Cloud Trends

Why backend as a service platforms are quickly gaining popularity

Posted by Mike Vizard on May 12, 2015 11:53:00 AM

Thanks mainly to a sharp spike in demand for custom mobile applications, the way enterprise IT organizations think about how mobile applications interact with backend applications and services is fundamentally changing.

Collaboration is key

Rather that stitching together all the individual backend services that mobile applications need to invoke, many IT organizations are increasingly turning to backend as a service (BaaS) platforms that unify the management of these services. Intended to be a more turnkey approach to deploying mobile applications, a backend as a service platform exposed via application programming interfaces (APIs) enables developers to use software development kits (SDKs) to invoke user management tools, push notifications, and integrate with social networks.

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Topics: Mobile Device Management, Cloud Trends

Overcoming internal IT organizations' fear of outside help

Posted by Mike Vizard on May 7, 2015 11:08:00 AM

While it might not come as a surprise to IT services firms, a new survey confirms their suspicions about internal IT organizations.

Well over half—61 percent—of the IT professionals responding to a survey from Innotas, a provider of cloud portfolio management tools, admitted they did not have enough resources and staff to manage the demand for IT projects within their organization.

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Topics: MSP Marketing, IT Services Trends

Deployment of Windows Server on AWS spikes

Posted by Mike Vizard on May 5, 2015 1:14:02 PM

In the recent revelations about how large the Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud has become, many people overlooked just how many of the applications hosted on AWS are running in production environments compared to application development and testing projects.

Amazon disclosed that in the most recent quarter AWS posted an operating income of $265 million on revenues of $1.57 billion. That's a roughly 17 percent gross margin on what is on track to become a $5 billion business this year. But to get a little more insight into what is actually happening inside the AWS cloud, it’s worth taking a look at the AWS Scorecard published each quarter by 2nd Watch, a provider of managed IT services for AWS.

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Topics: Cloud Industry and Technology, Cloud Trends

Artifical intelligence set to become multi-billion dollar market

Posted by Mike Vizard on Apr 30, 2015 2:00:00 PM

After many false starts over the past decade, it looks like artificial intelligence (AI) applications are finally starting to make their way into everyday applications across the enterprise market.

Most notably, AI is gaining traction in the form of machine learning software and cognitive computing applications powered by the IBM Watson platform. Having access to massive amounts of data is making it easier to justify the cost of investments in AI technologies that promise to transform the way most organizations operate.

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Topics: Cloud Trends

Fragmented data center co-location market continues to grow

Posted by Mike Vizard on Apr 28, 2015 12:00:00 PM

With more than 1,000 global providers of data center co-location services, this highly fragmented market continues to show signs of healthy growth.

In fact, a recent report published by 451 Research projects that the market for data center co-location services will reach $36.1 billion in 2017, up from $22.8 billion projected for 2015. Most notably, providers of these services with less than $500 million in revenue account for 74.8 percent of the market.

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Topics: Cloud Trends

Healthcare spending on IT services starts to look a little sickly

Posted by Mike Vizard on Apr 23, 2015 10:44:55 AM

Thanks largely to government initiatives such as the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Affordable Care Act (ACA), consumption of IT service in the healthcare sector has been nothing but robust for the early part of this decade.

But a new report issued this week by Technology Business Research (TBR) says that demand for IT services among healthcare providers might finally be saturated. The report finds that in the fourth quarter of 2014 demand for IT services in the healthcare sector only grew 1.3 percent, compared to 5.4 percent in the same period a year ago.

Given the massive surge in healthcare IT spending  that the U.S. government has fostered, not being able to maintain the same high level of growth over time is understandable.

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Topics: Cloud Trends, Compliance

AWS and VMware lose some altitude in the cloud

Posted by Mike Vizard on Apr 21, 2015 12:10:58 PM

Popular perception these days is that Amazon Web Services dominates the public cloud, while VMware enjoys the most momentum deploying private clouds that run on-premise.

But a new report from 451 Research based on a global survey of 1,500 IT professionals finds that 57 percent have instances of AWS running and 37 percent cited AWS as their most important infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) provider.

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Topics: Cloud Industry and Technology, Cloud Trends

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