Is SpotCloud Changing The Cloud Computing Capacity Game?

"It's like the train's left the station and I'm running behind it trying to catch up to it," Cohen said.

SpotCloud started as an odd "what if?" notion. Cohen said there are a host cloud computing providers left with unused capacity and prospective cloud capacity buyers looking for a lower cost cloud computing option. The result was SpotCloud, a cloud computing clearinghouse of sorts where cloud providers offer up their excess capacity at a deep discount and users buy that capacity for a savings of up to 60 percent.

SpotCloud launched into beta Nov. 1 and quickly gained traction, so much so that Cohen and Enomaly opened SpotCloud up to all service providers, not just the ones using Enomaly elastic Computing Platform [ECP] software.

"Due to strong demand from non ECP-based, cloud providers and IaaS platforms, we have decided to open up our marketplace to any and all platforms," Cohen wrote in a blog post. "In the next week we will publish seller integration instructions for the SpotCloud marketplace so platforms powered by other technologies can easily participate."

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"It's been astounding," Cohen said of the traction. "Apparently, this concept has some significant interest."

SpotCloud originally launched with 15 service providers, but Cohen said it has grown well beyond. "By the end of the year I can comfortably say that we will have hundreds of providers" using selling via SpotCloud, he said.

And on the buyer side, Cohen said there are nearly 1,000 registered users looking to buy up unused capacity for testing, development, traffic spikes and other non-mission critical cloud computing capabilities.

So far, buyers have been concentrated mostly in North America and parts of Europe. The selling side, however, has been more varied with providers signing up from nearly all corners of the globe.

"We're seeing interest from nearly every major cloud provider," he said. "The big names in the cloud are saying 'we have this same problem.'"

Meanwhile, SpotCloud is offering buyers a cheaper cloud computing environment. Cohen said some of Amazon's largest customers are coming to them looking for more localized, affordable cloud computing capacity. He called it an "arbitrage against Amazon."

Currently the ratio of cloud buyers to sellers is five to one, Cohen said. "One of the more interesting statistics is the ratio of buyers to sellers is tracking at 5:1 for buyers," Cohen wrote in the blog post. "This shows there's a lot of buy-side demand for the service."