System News
First Services Meeting "SunTone Certified"
100+ Dot-Coms Join SunTone Certification Program
January 11, 2000,
Volume 21, Issue 1

To make 7-by-24 service and reliability the norm for consumer and business Internet-based services, Sun has rallied support from more than 100 Service Providers (SPs), Independent Software Vendors (ISVs), and Network Equipment Providers (NEPs) for its SunTone Certification and Branding Program. This comprehensive specification and program leads the industry in detailing rigorous criteria for building, operating, and promoting virtually fool-proof Web services.

Services meeting Level One of the SunTone Certification standard now are available from nine of the industry's leading SPs, demonstrating tangible results from more than six months of technical planning and evaluation. The first SPs to offer services that meet the SunTone standard include:

  • Corio
  • Digex
  • Digital Island
  • eOnline, Exodus
  • GlobalCenter (a Global Crossing company)
  • Niku Corporation
  • Portera
  • USinternetworking, Inc

Certification under the SunTone program provides assurance to customers that every aspect of the SP's operations and infrastructure has been evaluated and judged to be of the highest quality.

To solidify the SunTone Certified brand as the industry's premier mark of quality for SPs, Sun also unveiled a new SunTone Certified logo, backed by an extensive marketing campaign. The company launched a multi-million dollar advertising campaign in major media to create brand awareness for this unique program.

Sun is putting its worldwide sales and marketing resources behind an aggressive effort to drive customers to SPs offering services that meet the SunTone Certified standard via a comprehensive suite of go-to-market initiatives. The new initiatives include cooperative marketing, financing and consulting, and will be supported by several thousand of Sun's sales, service and marketing personnel worldwide.

Go-to-Market Programs Put SunTone Certified SPs on the Map

Sun is committed to deploying its worldwide resources through a wide range of co-marketing and co-selling programs to help companies that are certified under the SunTone program increase sales. SPs that meet the SunTone Certified standard will be invited to participate in highly visible Sun functions including training, tradeshows, and customer events to promote their products and services. Branding and marketing efforts such as joint-advertising and joint collateral development will promote companies that are certified under the SunTone program to Sun's sales channels and customers. SPs also are eligible for co-marketing funds based on purchases from Sun. And Sun offers dual compensation to its sales force for driving new business to SPs that meet the SunTone Certified standard.

For companies certified under the SunTone program, Sun offers creative, custom tailored financing to support SPs' specific growth objectives -- whether they be a start-up or a large, established company. This includes aggressive pricing and deferred payment plans for Sun equipment and services. Sun also has established a dedicated SP financing group which will serve the specific needs of companies that meet the SunTone Certified standard for large and complex deals.

Sun Professional Services will assist SPs in building their infrastructure to meet availability guidelines as outlined in the SunTone Service Delivery Architecture specification. Sun will help SPs to identify and correct any problem areas within their IT environment which must be addressed before certification under the SunTone program is possible. Sun consultants also will help SPs write System Availability Guarantees for mission-critical applications and create an infrastructure to support them.

And Sun has established Service Provider competency centers in the United States, Europe and Asia, which can be used by SPs that meet the SunTone Certified standard as both a lab and a sales tool to demonstrate that a given application or suite of applications can be delivered as a Web service reliably, securely and with good performance; to perform integration and interoperability tests; and to showcase their solutions to end-user customers and partners.

Industry Seal of Quality

The explosion of e-commerce and applications hosting has left too many service providers unable to meet customer expectations. A recent study found that more than a quarter of 100 Web sites tested during the holidays could not complete orders due to system crashes, blockages or other factors rendering them inaccessible. Companies who fail to perform run a high risk of losing customer loyalty.

As a tool for restoring customer confidence, the SunTone Certified standard has become a "seal of quality" for service providers, ISVs, and system integrators. The SunTone Certification and Branding Program was created to recognize and promote investments in processes, people, methodology and infrastructure that in turn promote the delivery of secure, reliable and predictable Internet services. To become certified, SPs must meet or exceed the requirements of the SunTone Service Delivery Architecture specification. Using the SunTone Certified logo as a guide, customers can quickly and confidently choose service providers that meet quality standards aimed at making Web tone as reliable as dial tone.

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