cloudNearly half of communications service providers worldwide (47%) and more than half of North American communications service providers are offering cloud services to small and medium size businesses, according to the Allot Cloud Trends Report released today. But as cloud offerings become more sophisticated, the percentage of carriers supporting the offerings declines, Allot found.

For example, while 58% of North American service providers surveyed offer SMB cloud data center services and 67% offer email, only 50% offer security services and only 25% offer cloud customer relationship management or enterprise resource planning services.

Allot’s main business is enabling network operators to extract business intelligence from their networks. The report released today was based on interviews with 100 fixed, mobile and converged service providers.

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Carriers Offering Cloud Services
Allot’s research also showed that only those providers with the most sophisticated cloud offerings are also offering the sophisticated network services needed for cloud connectivity such as quality of service (QoS) and bandwidth optimization.

“When you look at those [service providers] offering sophisticated cloud services, QoS management becomes much more prevalent,” said Yaniv Sulkes, associate vice president of marketing for Allot, in an interview. Only a third of North American service providers in Allot’s survey offer managed cloud network/ WAN bandwidth optimization services.

Globally only 22% of communications service providers surveyed offer QoS optimization or acceleration services, but that number rises to 100% for service providers that provide enterprise contact center services, Allot found. And while only 23% of global providers offer some sort of bandwidth optimization services, that number climbs to 57% among providers that offer cloud security.

Allot believes communications service providers are in a good position to be at the “forefront of cloud services for enterprises and SMBs” because they can differentiate their offerings by providing managed and optimized access to applications and resources in the cloud.

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