Cloud Warranties and SLAs

By | July 12, 2012

What is implied warranty? definition and meaning.

In light of the recent AWS outages, perhaps cloud products would be much better served by explicit warranties or SLAs (Service Level Agreements).  Such a warranty does not have to commit to any greater availability and performance than is already provided, but rather more clearly sets customer expectations.

I believe that part of the reason for early bad experiences with cloud is improperly set expectations.  Cloud products that have an enterprise-hardened, B2B outsourcing heritage and a primary value proposition of ‘better’ have (for the most part) met expectations.  It’s those products with a B2C Web services and/or software (i.e. non-service product) heritage and primary value proposition of ‘cheaper’ which have dissatisfied buyers.  Those buyers expected the same level of accountability, customer support, and service accessibility from cloud products as they were used to receiving with traditional outsourcing services.

“Pay as you go” goes hand-in-hand with consumer-grade services; a hallmark of an enterprise, B2B service is that most of the subscriptions are under fixed-price, multi-year contracts.  Businesses cannot afford to consume dim sum style computing; cash flows need to be predictable.


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