QTS’ Open-IX certification, AWS deal suggest data gravity is moving to the edge

QTS’ Open-IX certification, AWS deal suggest data gravity is moving to the edge

Data center services provider QTS Realty Trust has expanded the number of facilities achieving Open Internet Exchange certification, following on the heels of news that the company had landed a major deal that will see AWS expand its presence in several facilities. Taken together, the news is more evidence that data gravity is gradually shifting outside of traditional data center markets such as New York City and Ashburn, Virginia and towards “edge” data centers — even though the edge is nearby in places such as Piscataway, New Jersey and Richmond, Virginia.

QTS said it had achieved Open Internet Exchange (DC OIX-2) certifications for 12 QTS data centers in nine US markets. The certifications and OIX standard have been developed by members of Open-IX, an industry-led volunteer organization. The organization is focused on creating open access standards for internet exchange providers (IXPs) and data center providers; one of the by-products of open standards is that enterprise customers can access services with less fear of vendor lock-in.

Open-IX noted that certification is gained after a detailed technical application and peer review process. Upon approval, ongoing adherence to the standard is community-regulated, creating a more transparent environment in which to consume internet infrastructure services, according to the organization.

One of the benefits of such standards is adherence to principles of network-neutral interconnection (meaning customers can connect traffic to multiple network service providers (NSP) at a facility not managed by the NSP).

QTS said it has DC OIX-2 certifications for 12 of its data centers in nine US markets, the most of any data center provider. A number of them are in core markets such as Virginia (Ashburn and Dulles) Miami, and Santa Clara, others are in what can be termed regional edge markets, including QTS Atlanta DC1 and DC2 and QTS Hillsboro NAP.  Others, such as QTS Piscataway, NJ NAP and QTS Richmond NAP (RIC1) are regional edge data centers that are facilitating trans-Atlantic traffic into and out of “major” metropolitan areas such as New York City and Ashburn, Virginia, respectively.

QTS and AWS – shifting data away from the traditional carrier hotels

The following is a contribution from our partner Structure Research

In related news, QTS confirmed that AWS deployed significant levels of network infrastructure in its Chicago, Atlanta and Piscataway data centers under long-term deals that will see multi-megawatt levels of power supplied. AWS is using QTS so that it can access dedicated floor space, power and connectivity in primary markets where traffic requirements are high, at levels that ensure it can scale and expand over the long term.

The AWS and QTS partnership speaks to where hyperscale (and large enterprise) network infrastructure requirements are headed. QTS ability to win these kinds of deployments has a number of additional benefits. They create a magnetic effect and help the data center operator attract other major network operators into the same building. This has a potential spin-off benefit for all customers and networks in the building and surrounding area.

The AWS deal with QTS also speaks to how the rapidly increasing scale of these types of requirements no longer fits into the conventional carrier hotel. Carrier hotels are running into space and power constraints and creating this demand for ‘Carrier Hotel 2.0’. AWS’ multiple deployments with QTS reflect a move to decentralize its core infrastructure proximate to the carrier hotels and are significant for enterprise deployments of all sizes seeking in-building access to AWS services and the other large networks that will eventually follow them into the same locations.

About the author

Phil Shih is Managing Director and Founder of Structure Research, an independent research firm focused on the cloud, hosting and data center infrastructure service provider markets.

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