July 2, 2010 – EMC has shuttered its Atmos Online cloud storage service, at least as a commercial service for end users. The company is shifting the technology to its Atmos-based cloud storage service provider partners, which currently include AT&T, Hosted Solutions and Peer 1 Hosting.
And I’m sure there will be many more now that partners won’t have to compete directly with EMC.
On its Atmos Online site, EMC directed customers to its Atmos cloud service provider partners.
Going forward, Atmos Online will be available strictly as a development environment, rather than a paid subscription service.
In my POV, Atmos Online was always a POC anyway.
It was a proof-of-concept designed to lure services providers at a time when the cloud storage concept was still a bit sketchy (although some would argue that it’s still sketchy). Atmos Online was launched a little more than a year ago.
The losers in this announcement are existing customers of Atmos Online (although it’s unclear how many of those there actually were), who will have to shift to one of EMC’s partner’s services or migrate to a non-Atmos cloud storage service.
The winners, of course, are EMC’s Atmos cloud storage partners, which no longer have to compete with EMC. Likewise, EMC no longer has to compete with those partners. It’s a win-win on that front. In fact, on its Atmos web site, EMC is “strongly encouraging” its existing Atmos customers to migrate to one of its partners.
Atmos Online as a commercial service for end users apparently never gained enough ground for EMC to justify the costs associated with hosted services. There’s more money in selling the technology and equipment to third-party providers that, at least in the case of AT&T, are better equipped to handle -- and make money from -- public cloud storage services. (One of EMC’s other partners – Hosted Solutions – launched its Atmos-based Stratus Cloud Storage service last month, which is based on TwinStrata’s CloudArray technology.)
Besides, Atmos Online wasn’t EMC’s only cloud storage play for consumers; the company still has Mozy and online storage services provider Iomega.
The shuttering of Atmos Online should be seen not as a failure on the part of EMC but, rather, as another prescient and tactical move by the company.