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For many companies, outsourced messaging services constitute the first company sanctioned adoption of cloud solutions. Hosted messaging services are coming to be regarded as both safe and scalable for corporate environments, and yet much scrutiny and debate still rages around the potential risks and limitations of cloud storage infrastructure. What makes mail service infrastructure so different?

According to a study of 200 companies in France, 67% of companies say they now have outsourced mail services. (study was undertaken by Pierre Audoin Consultants).

Of course individual employees have been using webmail services for quite some time. Most people have had a gmail or yahoo mail account for years. So it comes as no surprise to the consumer that mail services would be so widely adopted by business. Perhaps the greater surprise is that it didn’t happen sooner.

As in every SaaS arena, adoption has been delayed by much debated concerns about security, performance, reliability and cost. However, cloud based mail services are likely to reflect well on cloud services in general, representing as they do, the power and potential of cloud services done well.

Although many of us have come to take our mail services for granted – they are none the less a tremendously successful example of a very complex and demanding application.

Consider that in this context, the cloud can and does consistently deliver security, performance, reliability and cost savings.
What is more, messaging services are notorious for their storage growth rates. Users commonly use their mail folders as a form of primary storage, keeping messages indefinitely thus producing massive and exponential growth of object storage requirements.
In this way mail also proves that cloud based services can in fact insulate themselves – against rampant storage scaling needs.
Further, mail services work on very narrow margins, while continuing to deliver prompt access to even the oldest messages. Thus they prove that, with the right infrastructure it is possible to deliver secure, high performance, high availability, resilient and cost effective cloud services.

In summary we might expect that, as mail proves itself a solidly reliable resource, it is likely to become an ambassador for other cloud services in the corporate landscape. It might also prove to be a technological emissary for other cloud service sectors.

– Monique Shefer

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