Introduction to Cloud Architecture

GCIS 583: Introduction to Cloud Architecture Fall 2021                               Project

Deliverable Due Date Venue
Oral Report Submission 11: 59pm, September 15, 2021. Blackboard
Oral Report September 16, 2021. In class
Written Report 11: 59pm, September 24, 2021 Blackboard

 

1.     Case Study Description

CitiX is an entertainment company that provides over-the-top (OTT) streaming of movies and TV shows to customers in 86 countries covering Africa, North America, South America, Europe and part of Asia.  CitiX has an information technology (IT) department that is responsible for the acquisition, installation, provision, and maintenance of hardware, software, network, and other IT resources to meet the organization’s need. These IT resources are housed in an on-premises data center located at CitiX headquarters in California, USA. In recent times, CitiX has faced fierce competition from other streaming service providers such as Netflix and Hulu. In addition to threats from competitors, CitiX is also facing various challenges as follows:

 

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  1. A recent analysis of CitiX’s customer feedback shows that streaming services are very poor during peak period. For instance, some customers complain of poor video quality, service timeout and not able to download videos. Streaming of movies and TV shows reach peak period between May and August every year. In July alone, about 80.4 million customers downloaded movies and TV shows while another 100 million customers streamed movies alone. CitiX is considering investing and expanding their IT resources to accommodate increase in demand at peak period. But this would mean that these resources would be underutilized during off-peak periods, leading to waste, and loss of revenues.

 

  1. The head of CitiX IT department sent a memo to the Chief Information Officer (CIO) about the current delay in the process of acquiring IT resources. It takes an average of 4 weeks to acquire, install and configure new IT resources. For instance, to commission a new rack of server, the IT department will first find a suitable vendor, then place the order and wait for about 2 weeks for the servers to be built and delivered. Afterwards, the servers are inspected to ensure it meets the quality requirements, this takes up to 2 days. Then the installation, configuration and testing of the server takes another 1 week. This process takes longer if any of the servers has defect. This delay threatens the ability of the IT department to provide IT capabilities to support service delivery that meets customer needs. Hence, CitiX is losing part of their customer base to its competitors.

 

  • There has been various complains from customers in Asia about the longer time it takes to access CitiX’s web application, and sometimes the website is very slow or does not load at all. Troubleshooting from CitiX IT department shows that this is because of latency.

 

  1. CitiX is planning to increase its subscription cost from $5.99 per month to $7.99 per month. But to do this, the quality of service (QoS) must first be improved. This implies 24 hours a week availability, guaranteed streaming speed up to 80mb per second, higher definition quality. It must also reduce equipment failures and the costs of upgrading hardware and maintain a very high standard of reliability. This means that the technology that powers its systems must be reliable, modern, and cost-effective.

 

  1. While other OTT streaming service providers saw increase in revenue in 2020, CitiX’s profit decreased by 2%. This is due to larger overhead cost in analyzing large volumes of data and running complex simulations to predict which promotional activities will be the most effective. CitiX has been using a traditional relational database system (known as yDaB) for data analysis and modeling. However, this solution is no longer keeping up with the pace of demand. To keep up with competition, CitiX needs to run dozens of complex data simulations on TV advertising expenditure, digital marketing, coupon campaigns and other promotions, sales commissions. But yDab system has the capacity to run only one simulation a day.

 

  1. With the recent wave of cyber-attacks, CitiX needed to assure their customers that their information is secure. Hence, they need strong, robust, and resilient information system security mechanism.

Assuming that you and your team members are employees of KludTech LLC, a leading cloud provider in USA whose aim is to provide low cost, scalable and highly available IT capabilities to solve complex business challenges. The CIO of CitiX is considering the possibilities of deploying CitiX IT resources to the cloud. However, she is not sure of the potential benefits of cloud computing and how it can be used to address the challenges and solve the problems mentioned above. The CIO of CitiX contacted the sales department in KludTech LLC to request for an initial proposal to explain how cloud computing works and how cloud computing technologies and concepts can be used to meet the challenges stated above.

 

  • Deliverable

In this first phase, your role is to prepare a short proposal for CitiX’s board of directors. Your proposal will be complemented with an oral report (presentation) and covers the following areas:

  1. A detailed explanation of how cloud enabling technologies, mechanisms and concepts can be used to address each of the 6 challenges faced by CitiX as discussed in Section 1 (Case Description).

 

  1. The cloud deployment and delivery model(s) you would recommend for CitiX.

 

  1. Explanation of the rationale for recommending the delivery and deployment models above.

 

  1. Potential risks and disadvantages CitiX may face if they choose to deploy their IT resources to the cloud.

 

  1. Discussion of the benefits CitiX would derive by deploying its IT resources to the cloud; and how these benefits outweighed the risks and disadvantages of cloud computing.

 

 

  • Instructions for Power Point Presentation
  1. Each project group will prepare and make a presentation covering points (a–e) as stated above.
  2. This presentation will last for 20 minutes, after which questions will be asked.
  • Be sure not to include too many slides in your presentation. Imagine that you would spend an average of 2 minutes per slide, this means that you will need about 10 power points slides
  1. Do not include too much information in each slide.
  2. Every member of the group is required to participate in the presentation to earn marks.
  3. Be brief, precise, and clear in explaining concepts.
  • Spend time to practice your presentation with your group members.
  • Ask me for clarification, during office hours, if anything is not clear.

 

  • Submission instructions
  1. Finalize your proposal using the feedback you will receive during the presentation.
  2. Each group will submit only one proposal. Please include the names and student numbers of all your group members.
  • Please format this proposal with Times New Roman font style, 12points font size, and 1.5 space.
  1. Your submission should not exceed 6 pages, this excludes table of contents, reference, and appendix
  2. Please include a table that describes the roles and contributions of each member of your team to the project
  3. Also, submit your meeting minutes, which include the meeting date, time, attendance, agenda, what was discussed and who participated in the discussion.
  • Please cite and reference all materials you consulted to avoid plagiarism. APA or IEEE referencing style may be used.
  • Ask me for clarification, during office hours, if anything is not clear.