Cincinnati Bell Using Parallels, Apptix Tools to Target SMBs with Cloud Services

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Telecommunications provider Cincinnati Bell announced on Monday it has expanded its IT services for businesses with the addition of cloud-based Microsoft Communication and Collaboration Solutions powered by hosted business services provider Apptix and cloud service delivery software provider Parallels.

By using tools from Parallels and Apptix–two companies that cater to the small and medium businesses market–web hosting providers are able to more effectively target one of the most lucrative markets today.

But with larger hosting companies and telecommunication providers using these same tools, it becomes progressively more difficult for smaller web hosts to compete with these IT giants.

These new solutions will allow Cincinnati Bell to more effectively serve SMBs, as well as key industries including healthcare, government, and education.

The launch of Cincinnati Bell’s services follows the release the 2012 Parallels SMB Cloud Insights report, which showed that businesses are increasingly turning to cloud solutions such as hosted communications and collaboration services.

The report shows that in the past year, more than one million SMBs in the United States have started using some form of cloud services.

“Purchasing and maintaining software and hardware can be daunting and expensive for many SMB customers,” said Stuart Levinsky, general manager of cloud computing at Cincinnati Bell. “Cloud Solutions from Cincinnati Bell allow businesses to focus on what’s important to them – their customers – while letting us do the heavy lifting to provide a proven, reliable communications network and the top cloud-based services available anywhere.”

Cincinnati Bell’s new cloud solutions, which include hosted Microsoft Exchange email with mobile synchronization and hosted Microsoft SharePoint, keep employees connected on the go, improve productivity, and reduce the cost of IT services.

Apptix’s comprehensive portfolio of Cloud solutions includes Microsoft Exchange email, VoIP, SharePoint, Web Conferencing, and Secure IM with Presence.

There are also optional archiving and compliance features available to help businesses meet stringent regulatory requirements, such as HIPAA, PCI, FRCP, and SOX.

In June 2010, Cincinnati Bell acquired data center operator CyrusOne from ABRY Partners for approximately $525 million.

Talk Back: How are smaller Parallels partners able to differentiate their offerings to compete with larger companies like Cincinatti Bell? How has your own experience been in using tools from Parallels and Apptix to provide cloud services? Let us know in the comments.

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