ASP Infrastructure: The Party Has Started
On June 14th, Nortel Networks introduced an application service management
and integration solution that will enable service providers to offer hosted
eBusiness applications to businesses and deliver end-to-end applications
management to the desktop.
the Nortel Networks Preside Managed Application Services Platform, the
solution is designed to enable service providers to deliver a portfolio
of secure, managed and integrated ASP offerings. It will include technology
from BEA Systems, Inc., Tarantella, and iPlanet E-Commerce Solutions (a
Sun-Netscape Alliance) and will be compatible with client-server technology
from CiTRiX. The platform will enable management and interoperability
with a number of eBusiness applications including Nortel Networks (through
its Clarify eBusiness applications), mySAP.com solutions, i2 Technologies,
Inc., and desktop productivity applications from iPlanet as well as Portal
Software's Infranet billing application. Technology from EPiCON, Inc.
will be integrated into the Preside Managed Application Services Platform
in conjunction with Nortel Networks' acquisition of EPiCON.
first customer release of the platform solution is expected in the next
30 to 45 days and is being tested through Innovatia. Innovatia is part
of Aliant, a telecommunications and IT company.
Networks Preside Managed Application Services Platform will provide a
common platform integrated with their operations support system (OSS)
developed for the ASP and hosting markets. The platform will support provisioning
of multiple applications, application-to-application communication to
automate manual processes, and access via thin, fit and fat clients and
wireless devices. This will give service providers time-to-market differentiation,
the ability to streamline and scale operations with automatic and customized
billing, secure provisioning of applications and performance management.
Later this year, service providers will have the additional benefit of
Service Level Agreement (SLA) management.
Networks has entered into strategic technology and OEM alliances with
enabling software and middleware vendors including BEA Systems, Tarantella
and iPlanet. Nortel Networks has integrated these technologies with its
Preside directory, policy services and SLA management technology, Clarify
customer relationship management software and Access Policy Manager security
which embeds iPlanet's Directory Services. BEA Systems provides a suite
of products for enterprise application integration, transaction processing
software and business process management capabilities. The strategic relationship
with BEA Systems will enable the development of an ASP provisioning environment.
Networks will introduce a software developers program in the fourth quarter
of this year to provide resources for Independent Software Vendors (ISV)
to certify interoperability with the Preside Managed Application Services
Depending on what bulletin board you look at, or what industry analyst
you speak with, the estimates on the ASP market are in the billions. By
2003, analysts are predicting an Application Service Provider market anywhere
from 4 to 20 billion. E-commerce estimates are the same, if not higher.
industry pundits forecasting green fields and sunshine for the Application
Service Providers, it is not surprising companies are creating support
solutions designed specifically for ASP's. Nortel joins a party in full
swing. AT&T, MCI, and Lucent have all launched similar efforts. (For more
information, see the links to our related articles at the conclusion of
this document.) As stated in previous articles, this is great news for
Application Service Providers. Since the ASP market is relatively nascent,
the plethora of infrastructure support options provides an attractive
mix of choices.
Nortel Network's Preside Managed Application Services Platform is attractive.
However, ASP's should consider all options. We recommend identifying your
unique needs and comparison shopping. Perhaps exploring existing business
relationships with Nortel, or another provider, may provide negotiating
leverage. While selecting an infrastructure partner is challenging, the
positive news is there are more companies competing for your dollars.