Choosing a Cloud Provider is Like Buying a Home
Imagine you’re buying a new home, one of the biggest and most emotional decisions you’ll ever make. As the realtor opens the front door of the house you’re considering, you’re drawn into a world of new colors, textures, and smells.
The realtor escorts you to the dining room, where you envision your family sitting around the big oak table. Everything from the wall color to the furniture is what you’ve always dreamed about. The red sofa in the living room reminds you of your own, inviting you to sit down as though you already are home.
After seeing the living room, and especially the kitchen, you’re sold!
It sounds cheesy, but getting swept up in emotions and aesthetics is common for home buyers. Sellers seek to influence these warm and fuzzy feelings with staged decor, neutrally painted walls, and the smell of cookies baked right before the showing.
Why do sellers do it? Because it works. Once buyers are in “buy mode,” they soon forget about everything else.
But what about critical aspects of the home like the foundation or the condition of the roof that they’re about to live under? When distracted by aesthetics like furniture, buyers unwittingly wear blinders while choosing a home and core flaws go unnoticed until after move-in day.
Unfortunately, these blinders are similar to those that an IoT businesses, or any business, might wear when choosing a Cloud provider.
"Parts of the House" to Consider When Choosing a Cloud Provider
When confronted by a huge market of promising Cloud services, what are the attributes your IoT business should look for in a Cloud provider, and what are the blinders you need to look past?
In the Cloud world, furniture is the brand of hardware and software that the Cloud is built with. This includes servers, network devices, storage devices, and virtualization platforms. These OEM brands can influence Cloud-buyers more than they should—and it’s these brands that often distract from other critical considerations.
These parts are important, but be warned: it can be like the new, exciting feeling of home-buying. You might see the Cloud infrastructure you've been looking forward to purchasing yourself and want to jump in right away. The important thing to realize is that every Cloud provider has many of these same features, and it's only one checkbox of many that make up a good Cloud provider. Don't let the “staging” stop you from investigating further.
As a home-buyer, did you check the foundation of the home before you bought it? The answer is likely “Yes!”, because someone said you had to. If you’re buying Cloud services, you’re the one in charge, so no one is forcing, or even guiding, your hand—especially if you’re the smartest guy in the room.
But if you’re doing the right thing for the right reasons, you’ll want to check the reliability of the data center that your Cloud is hosted in, because not all data centers are the same. And not all Cloud providers even own their own data centers. A rock-solid data center with redundancy and certifications is an absolute must. Otherwise, you may find that your house is built on sand.
The last time you bought a home, did you inspect the roof yourself? Did you climb the ladder and check for leaks? Many homebuyers don’t. Having good internet and network connectivity is like having a solid roof over your head. After all, what good is the furniture if the roof is constantly leaking?
If you don’t feel qualified, have someone you trust check that your provider offers redundancy and failover capabilities. It’s vital that the provider has someone on staff that truly knows network so they can help you through the tough times when things go bump in the night. And they will, because if three things are certain it’s death, taxes, and internet outages.
Is there a second data center in case the first one goes down? As an IoT business, you know downtime can be devastating. A trustworthy Cloud provider will have precautions set up with this in mind, in addition to excellent connectivity and strong carrier relationships. At a minimum, you’ll want to make sure they have backup and failover options above and beyond your day-to-day production requirements.
Your Cloud provider should also offer service plans and 24/7/365 customer service for when things go wrong. Be wary of big, national corporations that sell you the Cloud infrastructure, but can't be reached when you need them most. Make sure your provider is “always on,” and their people are always available.
Choosing LightBound as Your Dream Home (Cloud Provider)
LightBound clients not only get a good feeling when they walk in the door—they also get to enjoy that same cozy feeling for years to come. You’ll be able to check off all your boxes and sleep better at night knowing that we’ve got your back with a solid foundation and sturdy roof overhead. And, yes, we’ve got the eye-catching furniture to go with it.
This is what we do, it’s all we do—and it's who we are.
Contact LightBound today to learn more about our Cloud portfolio and how we could be the dream home your IoT business has been looking for.