Equinix release 4 Blueprints for IOA (Credit Freeimages.com/Joako13
Equinix release 4 Blueprints for IOA

Equinix has announced the availability of four blueprints for its Interconnection Orientated Architecture (IOA).

Equinix developed the IOA as part of its response to its Enterprise of the Future document it issued in October 2015. In that report, Equinix proposed that the most effective companies in the future would be those who were the best connected. This is not just about connection between offices, mobile and home workers but connection to other resources such as the cloud, suppliers and customers.

All about the Equinix Enterprise of the Future

The whole thing came out of a detailed survey across its customer base to see how they were looking to unlock future revenue. That survey of over 1,000 senior IT staff has led Equinix to develop its plans for the IOA and the blueprints that it has published today.

Each of the four blueprints identifies particular challenges around interconnectivity. They deal with the interconnecting of people to locations, cloud to data. What is interesting is that while nothing in the underlying premise of each blueprint is new, Equinix has chosen to position its own burgeoning business as the key to success.

IOA could almost be described as Equinix emerging from being just a carrier-neutral provider with limited brokerage capabilities to being a one-stop shop for interconnectivity. This is a big step forward and one Equinix has invested a lot of time and spent a lot of money getting itself to here.

Looking at what it proposes across the various blueprints, most very large corporate customers will raise an eyebrow and say ‘but we already do much of this.’ Yes they do but at present they either utilise a range of different providers which creates a problem of management and ironically interconnection or they outsource it all to a managed provider.

At the heart of this is Platform Equinix described as ‘the widest network-neutral footprint’. Making this happen has been an impressive number of deals with cloud providers to help connect their customers directly to their network across the bandwidth that Equinix can provide. Its use of the International Business Exchange (IBX) and direct connections with SoftLayer, Microsoft, VMware as well as the acquisition of TelecityGroup has given it the widest reach of any provider.

Vice President, Global Vertical Strategy & Marketing at Equinix (source LinkedIn)
Vice President, Global Vertical Strategy & Marketing at Equinix

It appears that Equinix has managed to go further than players such as Cisco, NTT Communications, CenturyLink and Interxion. It now has over 100 data centres that underpin its Platform Equinix and a robust network that interconnects them all. It is across this backbone and through these data centres that it believes it can now deliver on the IOA blueprints that it has published.

According to Tony Bishop, vice president, vertical marketing, Equinix: “Results of our recent Enterprise of the Future survey, together with the experience we’ve gained working with our top global enterprise and service provider customers, indicate that we are on the precipice of a massive interconnection-led reinvention of enterprise IT.

We believe an Interconnection Oriented Architecture is a valuable, repeatable strategy that will guide enterprises on their journey to becoming a truly interconnected enterprise, leveraging Equinix’s distinct interconnection and colocation capabilities.


It will be interesting to see if IOA can give Equinix what it appears to crave and that is the number one slot when it comes to global interconnectivity. If it isn’t there yet it cannot be far off. Its footprint is larger than many of the key telcos in this space and it has overtaken IBM even when its SoftLayer portfolio is taken into account.

Will businesses now rush to adopt the Equinix blueprints? Probably not. Many will wait for proof points and to see how it differs from what they are already doing. There will also be those who want to see the blueprints develop into a playbook that they can follow to get the benefits that Equinix is extolling.

One question that will take some thinking about from Equinix is can it deliver all of that, continue to expand to meet market expectation and still reach its goal of being energy neutral?


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