Israeli tech firm NICE Systems announced it is acquiring inContact, makers of cloud-based software for call centers, for 940 million. NICE says the acquisition will help the company expand its customer service offerings and provide a platform for a fully integrated cloud contact center via a planned Contact Center as a Service (CCaaS) approach. After the deal closes, NICE and inContact plan to combine their contact center applications and analytics with cloud contact center technology, targeting both SMBs and enterprises. NICE traditionally has focused on analytics-based customer service tools for financial institutions and other large enterprises. "Together, inContact and NICE are ... combining our best-in-class contact center applications and analytics with cloud contact center," said NICE CEO Barak Eilam.
A major Houston-based energy company sold its San Antonio data center to a West Coast cloud computing giant in a deal that was filed during late October, one day after the company announced it signed up as a client for cloud services, public records show. Chevron USA Inc., a subsidiary of Chevron Corp., sold its 5200 Rogers Road data center to Microsoft Corp. on Oct. 31. It was appraised to be worth $80 million, according to the Bexar County Appraisal District. The value of the sale was not disclosed.
Cloud communications provider Twilio launched Twilio Flex a contact center platform that covers multiple channels and allows customers to customize interfaces, routing and reporting. Twilio Flex can scale up to 50,000 agents. The aim for Twilio is to do battle with existing call center infrastructure players that deploy on-premise call center hardware and software. Twilio is betting that Flex can bring more APIs to the call center and enable enterprises to customize more. The call center market features a bevy of players ranging from business process outsourcing companies to systems integrators to private branch exchange providers.
What Is the Future of Multi-Cloud Computing? Like so many other IT solutions, cloud computing services have long been promoted from a standpoint of administrative efficiency. As the rationale goes, if you get your cloud services from a single provider, you'll enjoy the reduced hassle of consolidating third party business relationships, receive IT services at bargain prices, and have an easier time coordinating those services. It's true that using fewer service providers can offer some nice perks, but cloud computing is moving in the opposite direction at many companies. Instead of reaping the benefits of placing cloud services under one umbrella, businesses are mining the advantages of the antithetical approach: receiving cloud services from multiple providers - a discipline known as "multi-cloud computing."
Thanks to its many business benefits, cloud computing is becoming commonplace within organizations of all sizes. Historically, companies have struggled to determine which model - public or private - best met their needs. But of late, IT professionals are increasingly starting to realize that both public and private clouds can exist harmoniously within the same organization, and that, in many instances, a hybrid cloud model can actually be the most effective approach. RightScale's "2016 State of the Cloud Survey" found that hybrid cloud adoption increased from 58 percent to 71 percent year-over-year. The uptick in hybrid cloud computing has not been overlooked by cybercriminals, who have been busy adapting traditional attack methods and devising new ways to target threat surfaces and vulnerabilities in the cloud.