IT leaders baffled by utility computing

Over half of senior IT staff say they have no plans to embrace utility computing, and one in six does not even understand the concept
Written by Graeme Wearden, Contributor
Advocates of utility computing have failed to get their message across to many senior IT staff, according to research published this week.

IXEurope, a datacentre services company, surveyed 114 of its existing customers and found that 16 percent weren't able to say what utility computing was.

Over half of the IT decision makers surveyed said they had no interest in rolling out the technology within their organisation. Just 1 percent have actually begun deploying some form of utility computing.

This lack of enthusiasm is partly a result of ignorance, but capital expenditure and security concerns are also factors, IXEurope said.

"We were concerned to find that this research reveals not only a need for a greater understanding of emerging technology strategies but also a widespread mistrust of vague IT terminology," said Michael Winterson, vice president of international sales and marketing at IXEurope, in a statement.

"This should be a clear sign to those in the industry that customers need -- and want -- education on new and complex technological developments that could result in cost-savings for business."

Many IT giants are devoting a lot of resources and attention to utility computing. It is key part of IBM's On Demand strategy, for example, and both HP and Sun are also strong supporters.

The concept behind utility computing is that IT systems will become a pay-as-you-go service akin to electricity. Storage and network capacity could be turned up or down at the touch of a button or will even respond automatically to changing demands, supporters of utility computing have claimed.

These systems are also meant to be self-configuring, self-monitoring and self-healing, so IT staff won't have to spend time on manual configuration and troubleshooting.

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