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Telstra to host VMware public cloud platform

Telstra will play host to VMware's vCloud Air public cloud platform as it makes its move into the Australian marketplace, with the country's largest telco set to host the platform in its domestic datacentres.

Virtualisation and cloud infrastructure provider VMware is planning to launch its vCloud Air public cloud platform in Australia early next year, with Telstra set to host the platform within its Australian datacentre footprint as part of an effort to build its cloud services offering.

VCloud Air, which previously came under the vCloud Hybrid Service banner, is a public cloud platform built on the foundation of VMware's vSphere server virtualisation platform, and is designed to be compatible with enterprises' on-premises datacentres for hybrid cloud functionality.

According to VMware, the platform currently supports over 50,000 applications and more than 90 operating systems, and is compatible with the Hybrid Cloud Powered Services provided by the VMware vCloud Air Network of service providers, which includes providers operating more than 20 datacenters in Australia.

Telstra's datacentres will be the first in Australia to play host to the vCloud Air platform, which will be wholly managed and operated by VMware.

Telstra said that the move would enable its new and existing VMware customers to extend, or move, their on-premises IT infrastructure to the public cloud.

Both companies hope that the new Australian service location will provide customers with a VMware operated hybrid cloud option that addresses local compliance, data sovereignty, and protection concerns by keeping enterprises' data in Australia.

The announcement comes as VMware kicks off its 10th annual Australian vForum partner event in Sydney on November 4 and 5, with this year's event boasting over 7,000 registrations.

Telstra Global Enterprise and Services executive director Erez Yarkoni said that the partnership would help broaden the telco's cloud services offering, into which it has plugged over AU$800 million to develop.

"As part of our overarching cloud strategy, Telstra is committed to expanding our capabilities by working with global leaders in cloud services," said Yarkoni. "Partnering with VMware is another example of us delivering on that commitment, providing our customers with greater flexibility and choice when it comes to selecting and deploying their cloud services.

"We have seen strong uptake in Australia of public cloud services. However, we are also seeing increasing interest from customers to identify different cloud strategies appropriate to their individual business needs. We are providing our customers with solutions that enabled multi-cloud environments, so they can optimise performance, cost, and flexibility across multiple applications and workloads," he said.

Telstra's Melbourne datacentre in Clayton, in which the company has invested AU$100 million , will be the first location to host the new platform.

VMware Cloud Services Business Unit executive vice president and general manager Bill Fathers said that the introduction of vCloud Air to Australia, along with the country's 2,200 vCloud Network partners, follows a positive response to the platform in other regions around the world.

"We're extremely pleased to be adding Australia to the growing list of countries with local vCloud Air access and support," said Fathers. "Many of our partners in other markets have experienced growth as a result of access to vCloud Air, while our customers have welcomed the versatility of a hybrid cloud platform that integrates seamlessly with their existing on-premises systems.

"We expect the same response in Australia as a critical mature market and bellwether for enterprise IT in the Asia-Pacific region, where we see persistently strong local interest in a more seamless approach to hybrid cloud," he said.

The service is expected to be available in Australia in the first half of 2015.