Call Recording

Contenders and Pretenders: True Cloud vs. Virtual Machines

Jessica Kruger | July 31, 2019
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You’re told that your hotel is right on the beach, so you assume you’ll see the water from your window. Why wouldn’t you think that? Your hotel is “on the beach”. What you’re not told is that your hotel is “technically” on the beach. It’s also behind two other hotels on that beach, and your view is of those hotels. “Cloud technology” is sold in the same duplicitous way. You’re promised that you’re modernizing your operation by moving it to the Cloud. What you’re actually being sold is an off-premise solution that dabbles in the Cloud, but in reality, barely takes advantage of it. In the true Cloud versus virtual machine debate, some differences might not seem obvious, but when it comes to call recording, the differences between true Cloud solutions and virtual machines (VM) stick out like red beach umbrellas.

Let’s look at some of the critical reasons for using true Cloud technology.

Why Did You Migrate to The Cloud in the First Place?

Maybe it seemed like a great idea to ditch your on-prem servers, exchanging them for a VM-based Cloud solution. And to be fair, there are some good reasons you might use a VM in the Cloud. But when it comes to data-heavy applications like call recording, QA, and analytics, We hit a wall. Using a VM is rather like having an on-premise solution, just on someone else’s premises. That means you’ll inherit the costs you would’ve encountered had you stayed on-premise. True Cloud tech and VM tech are very different in practice. Hint, one of them poses as the other.

A VM Cluster is Just That

With Call recording, your VM is limited to its own processing bandwidth, network resources, and application state. Soon as those resources feel the strain of real call traffic, your provider has to spin up additional virtual machines. Instead of relying on the power of the Cloud, your application is relying on the provider’s VM network. There’s a reason it’s called ‘virtual’. You’ve kinda gone nowhere and paid for a logo that looks like this.


But hey, maybe that’s still better than what you can see from your hotel room.

The Cloud Is Unlimited

A true Cloud technology solution leverages the processing brawn of a geometrically increasing number of computers that make up the global network that is, well, the Cloud. Using a true Cloud call compliance solution requires only a background running application that won’t tax your network resources. While the VM vendor charges you for their private network, you miss the Cloud benefits you signed on for. A never-obsolete processing force that handily manages the traffic of small operations and major telecoms alike. And, which solution do you think will have downtime first? A cluster of private virtual machines servicing a host of clients, or the global fabric of the Cloud that increases its redundancy by the hour?

Capacity, Redundancy, and (wait for it) Money

Arguably one of the largest improvements the Cloud gifts us with is reliable, redundant, offsite storage. Call recording data accumulates quickly. The capacity of a VM-based operation is limited to the storage space of that operation. When more space is needed, guess who’s paying for that? You, while you enjoy the same lackluster view from the hotel room, but for more money.

Noted tech author David Linthicum, speaking about the Cloud said “The idea is to share computing power among many companies and people, thereby reducing the cost of that computing power to those who leverage it.” VM solutions simply do not deliver this benefit when you add up all the ancillary costs mentioned above. This is especially true when it comes to call recording. Compounding the cost issue, there’s usually a long term service contract accompanying that hardware solution.

Enter another wonderful product of the Cloud, SaaS. If we’re going to reduce costs, especially for call recording which is traditionally expensive, it’s vital that our solution scales with usage. One could argue that your VM provider spinning virtual machines up and down to accommodate need is technically scaling with usage, just like your hotel is technically on the beach. Problem is, the increase in VM bandwidth could be other customers’ usage and not yours. Your call network has usage peaks and valleys throughout the year. True Cloud solutions (like CallCabinet CallCabinet) maximize OpEx savings by exchanging the long term contracts for a pay-as-you-go service.

To be sure, virtual machines are stable tools in networking and telephony. The point is to not get fooled by a pretender that’s labeled a Cloud solution, but is, by definition, only virtual.

Learn more about true Cloud solutions like CallCabinet. Schedule a demo today.


Brian Gocher
Brian is a freelance technology writer and media editor based out of Central New Jersey. He’s logged 20 years of experience in the Telecom industry and side-hustles in the record industry. Brian started his career in technology at a company that made analog modems. He migrated to a marketing career in the call recording industry where he learned exactly how and why calls are monitored for quality assurance. These days Brian fuses his skills together to deliver his researched observations about telephony and compliance laws in polished articles and videos. He’s also composed the music for a long list of big Hollywood trailers. He does not miss the sound of analog modems but he is endlessly fascinated with phones.

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