Two Steps Back? With Exodus filing for Chapter 11 protection, some pundits are suggesting that telcos will take the lead in the web-hosting business. (See Red Herring's quote from Tier 1 Research.) Gawd, I sure hope not!
Pure web-hosting services were born because telcos were inept at providing anything other than power, pipe and ping. And telcos weren't even very good at ping until recently. True, some telcos are now legitimate players in web hosting via acquisitions, such as C&W/Digital Island and Worldcom/Digex/UUNET, but such vendors will only be able to provide good web hosting to the extent that they can retain (and let manage) the people who know what they're doing. Red Herring mentions AT&T, Level 3 Communications, and Qwest--true telcos that have built their web-hosting services internally. These guys tend to work from a telco mentality, and that's a very different attitude from what you need in a good web-hosting vendor.
From what I hear, IBM is getting its act together, and may be a candidate for one of the tops spots. I don't have much experience with them yet, but some of my Exodus-hosted clients are considering IBM. I'll let you know how it goes there.
In short, if all you need is power, pipe and ping (pure colocation) maybe the telcos are a good place to go. But if you need anything more--even just good monitoring, for instance--you might want to look elsewhere. Too bad about Exodus and those that will shortly follow in its footsteps. They had the right idea.
Posted Sunday, September 30, 2001 11:28:17 PM