Should ASEAN Telcos Reassess Data Center Business?

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:            

  • Major ASEAN telcos are considering selling their data center business.
  • As the demand is shifting, telcos should consider reassessing their data center business strategy.

In the last few days, three major ASEAN telcos – PLDT, Globe, and Indosat – were reported to be mulling over their data center businesses, worth around $500 million (USD), $200 million, and $200 million, respectively.

Not a New Trend, but Has Been Happening for Years

Having telcos exit the data center market is not new: Verizon sold its 29 data centers in the America region to Equinix in 2016; Tata Communications sold 17 facilities in 2016 and its data center arm sold a 26% stake in its Singapore business in 2019; Lumen completed the sale of its data center and colocation business in 2017; AT&T sold 31 of its data centers to Brookfield in 2018; Telefonica sold off 11 data centers in 2019 and confirmed the sale of additional four facilities in 2021; PCCW sold its data center business in 2021; and Singtel has announced that it is considering selling off its infrastructure, including data centers.  However, the trend is only recently coming to the emerging ASEAN region. Continue reading “Should ASEAN Telcos Reassess Data Center Business?”

Malaysian Telcos Shift Gears to Enhance Cloud Offerings

Summary Bullets:

A. Amir

• Digi expanded its enterprise portfolio and strengthen its SME position with the launch Oracle NetSuite.

• Maxis is moving in the right direction with its Right Cloud to address the increasing multi-cloud demand in the market.

The last three months saw Celcom’s partnership with Google to offer Google Workspace to SMEs; Maxis’ acquisition of Peering One, a private and hybrid cloud provider; and TM ONE’s partnership with SAP to offer a range of the latter solutions from its infrastructure (Cloud alpha). Now, in the first half of September, there were already two significant moves by Digi and Maxis to enhance their cloud offerings:

1. Digi Business brings cloud-based ERP solutions to SMEs

Continue reading “Malaysian Telcos Shift Gears to Enhance Cloud Offerings”

IoT and Environmental Sustainability Can Come Together to Protect the Planet

K. Weldon
K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

  • Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) initiatives have become important marketing tools and proof points of credibility for enterprise IT and communication services providers. Providers also hope to leverage these initiatives as revenue generators.
  • While IoT contributes solutions to help with many ESG concerns, its role in measuring, monitoring, and control of environmental conditions and parameters is particularly relevant. IoT service providers should continue to develop and extend these capabilities to position themselves as worthy stewards of the planet.

ESG has never been as important as it is today, at a time when our health continues to be threatened by a global pandemic and the world faces drastic disruption due to climate change.  Service providers that offer IoT solutions, as well as their network equipment and software vendor partners, are adding ESG messaging into many of their offerings, as each is intent on proving its worth as contributors to the common good.  While the ‘S’ and ‘G’ aspects of solutions are extremely important, the environmental contributions should be especially key to the positioning of service providers that may still struggle to monetize their IoT portfolios.  This is because measuring, monitoring, and control of environmental parameters have always comprised a key benefit and use-case driver for IoT.  Some of the many types of IoT use cases that contribute to environmental ‘health’ include: Continue reading “IoT and Environmental Sustainability Can Come Together to Protect the Planet”

Fresh Bluetooth Vulnerabilities Point to Underlying Concerns About Connected Device Security

Summary Bullets:

Amy Larsen DeCarlo – Principal Analyst, Security and Data Center Services

• Security researchers identified more than a dozen Bluetooth Classic stack vulnerabilities that affect at least 1,400 products

• This issue is highlighting broader cybersecurity challenges in the connected device world

Security researchers from Singapore University of Technology and Design cast a spotlight on vulnerabilities in 13 different Bluetooth chipsets that could put mobile and other connected devices at risk of breaches. Dubbed BrakTooth, with Brak being a Norwegian word for crash, the 16 identified vulnerabilities in the Bluetooth Classic stack can be exploited using a number of mechanisms including denial of service, firmware crashes, deadlocks, and arbitrary code execution (ACE). A wide range of devices from Dell laptops to consumer smart speakers and connected refrigerators could be vulnerable.

Continue reading “Fresh Bluetooth Vulnerabilities Point to Underlying Concerns About Connected Device Security”

Security and Networking Consolidation Needs Concrete Examples

Summary Bullets:

S. Schuchart

• Security and networking are converging, the evidence is clear, both from a technological and strategic standpoint, with security threats increasing.

• The enterprise needs tools to manage the human aspects of security and networking convergence and the fist instrument they need is real industry examples proving the trend from vendors, ITSP, carriers, and industry analysts.

By design and necessity, the security and networking industries are moving towards consolidation. Security companies are buying networking resources and networking companies are snapping up security vendors left and right. If you address a room full of vendors from the security and networking markets and proclaim that the two markets are converging, you will get heads nodding sagely. But the reality on the ground is much more complicated. Much like a stone arch, something has to move before things begin to fall in the direction gravity is pulling them.

Continue reading “Security and Networking Consolidation Needs Concrete Examples”

Observability Solutions Simplify the New Distributed IT

Summary Bullets:

Charlotte Dunlap – Principal Analyst, Application Platforms

• Over the next six to 12 months, the observability market segment will evolve to include more comprehensive solutions which provide application-level observability data alongside systems-level data, delivered through pre-set parameters

• The future of observability is ML-powered predictive and prescriptive analytics to enable proactive responses that prevent problematic incidents

Accelerated digital business transformations are steering operations teams towards new observability stacks to oversee an increasingly diverse and distributed IT portfolio. Ops teams are overwhelmed with the move from monolithic apps to microservices where various service components within a single app must be secured and managed. New monitoring tools are emerging to help developers collaborate under DevOps models and gain automated visibility into the impact of modern coding on underlying systems. Observability solutions will shorten the lengthy feedback cycle involved before committing apps to code, enhancing the quality of apps moving through the pipeline.

Continue reading “Observability Solutions Simplify the New Distributed IT”

New Directions in the ASEAN Cloud Market as Enterprises Advance Their Journey

Summary Bullets:

A. Amir

• The accelerated cloud adoption in ASEAN is driving the market awareness and maturity in the region. Enterprises are starting to look for more advanced features such as integrated cloud solutions with other ICT domains.

• New requirements are also driving competition and attracting global cloud players to expand their footprints to capture the high growth opportunity.

About a year and a half since the pandemic first hit the region, ASEAN enterprises had gone through various ICT transformations including accelerated cloud deployments to enable remote working. The awareness and maturity of cloud have significantly increased in the last 18 months. Based on our recent engagements with leading cloud providers and enterprises in ASEAN, some of the current key trends in the cloud market are the convergence with other ICT domains, hyperscalers’ momentum, and the beginning of edge computing.

Continue reading “New Directions in the ASEAN Cloud Market as Enterprises Advance Their Journey”

IT Service Providers Play a Key Role in Ensuring Successful IoT Deployments

K. Weldon
K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

  • The role of IT services providers in offering IoT solutions to enterprises is important for delivering successful engagements that might otherwise have been thwarted by ecosystem fragmentation and complexity.
  • GlobalData’s August 2021 report on IT service provider IoT solutions highlights vendors that have developed unique portfolios and end-to-end solutions that can break through enterprise skepticism and reduce worry.

The fragmentation of the supplier ecosystem has long been a barrier to adoption of IoT, as enterprises are often confused, frustrated, and worried about having to separately negotiate, pay for, and manage connectivity, devices, security solutions, management platforms, and vertical solutions from multiple suppliers. The central role of IT services providers (ITSPs) in making IoT and other complex technologies easier to use while simultaneously helping to solve business problems is to offer a one-stop shop.  This approach combines the ITSP’s own and third-party partner solutions, while adding advisory, integration, professional and managed services, and end-to-end vertical solutions. Continue reading “IT Service Providers Play a Key Role in Ensuring Successful IoT Deployments”

Telefonica Tech Uses Computer Vision and Edge Computing to Improve Customer Experiences

Summary Bullets:

R. Bhattacharyya

• Telefonica Tech is partnering with C2RO to offer an AI-based customer analytics solution that uses computer vision to understand the movement of people through spaces, with information segmented by demographics.

• The solution uses edge computing, which enables analysis of data near the point at which it was generated, ensuring that sensitive information remains on site.

Applications of computer vision are vast, ranging from quality control in the manufacturing process to monitoring of grape health in vineyards. Computer vision can also be used to analyze people, with applications ranging from determining building occupancy and traffic patterns, to ascertaining whether individuals are wearing face masks and adhering to safety protocols.

Telefonica Tech is helping its customers realize the benefits of computer vision. It is partnering with Canada-based C2RO to offer enterprises AI-based customer analytics that uses computer vision to understand the movement of people through spaces, with information segmented by demographics. The C2RO PERCEIVE solution is designed to help organizations better understand customer behavior by providing insights into customer and visitor traffic patterns, dwell times, demographics (gender and age), and points of interest, as well as queue measurements. Telefonica’s Smart Steps platform provides the socio-economic information. The solution targets venues, retail organizations, and governments, and is positioned as a solution that can help organizations improve the customer experience and optimize store and venue layouts.

The offer uses surveillance cameras that are strategically positioned throughout a venue (there is no need to upgrade to AI-enabled devices). The AI-powered C2RO PERCEIVE solution is installed on a local edge server so that data is analyzed on-site. Images are not extracted from the venue and therefore adhere to GDPR guidelines. Telefonica Tech assists from start to finish with professional services that include the definition of technical requirements, assistance with hardware identification and procurement (although the C2RO solution is based only on cameras, Telefonica Tech can help assist with obtaining sensors and other devices for other in-store analytics solutions), server configuration, and solution maintenance and support. The C2RO PERCEIVE solution is complemented and enriched with information and analytics from Telefonica Tech’s Smart Steps platform, which uses anonymized and aggregated mobile customer data to provide insights into population mobility and behavior.

Continue reading “Telefonica Tech Uses Computer Vision and Edge Computing to Improve Customer Experiences”

Improving 5G Availability and Speeds through Mid-band Spectrum and Massive MIMO

Summary Bullets:

S. Soh

• The time is ripe for mobile operators to ramp up their 5G deployment to enhance their coverage and speeds to support new applications.

• Mobile operators with substantial mid-band spectrum and deployed massive multiple-input and multiple-output (M-MIMO) technology can deliver faster speeds and achieve service differentiation.

The deployment of 5G is well underway and people around the world are having a taste of the next-gen experience. GlobalData forecasts 5G subscriptions will reach 861 million by end of the year, doubling the figure in 2020. The availability of 5G is also rising in major cities, based on a study conducted by Ookla (Global 5G Benchmark Report Q1 – Q2 2021). The study defines availability as the percent of users on 5G-capable devices that spend the majority of their time on 5G, both roaming and on-network. Besides coverage, the availability of 5G-capable phones is a key factor in driving adoption. According to GSA, there were over 600 commercially available 5G devices in August 2021, which included mobile phones from major brands such as Apple, Samsung, Huawei, Google, and Xiaomi. While the initial focus was in launching 5G commercial services, the race now is about increasing availability and speeds.

Continue reading “Improving 5G Availability and Speeds through Mid-band Spectrum and Massive MIMO”