Starting on September 1, 2019, Microsoft will begin onboarding new Office 365 users directly into Microsoft Teams, in essence removing the option for customers to run both Teams and the soon-to-be-retired Skype for Business Online.
Though somewhat extreme, this migration plan has been coming on for some time now, frankly ever since Microsoft introduced Microsoft Teams in 2017.
• There is an urgency for communications service providers (CSPs) to transform their businesses, including systems, processes, and people/culture.
• Agile product development, digital platforms, automation, and SDN/NFV solutions are key aspects of CSP transformation.
CSPs face declining carriage revenue and increasing competition from traditional rivals and disruptive players in the form of OTT players, cloud-based service providers and new market entrants with leaner operating models. Against this backdrop, CSPs see an urgency to improve customer service to minimize churn, develop digital sales channels, and embrace cloud and digital solutions to achieve operational agility. At the same time, technology advancement is opening up new opportunities for CSPs in the enterprise segment. Examples include SDN/NFV, big data, cloud, AI/ML, cybersecurity, IoT, and 5G. Enterprises across various industry verticals are tapping insights from customer data to gain competitive advantages. CSPs hold vast amount of data and operate very complex IT systems and networks. There are opportunities for CSPs to transform their business and operations through the use of digital solutions but major changes need to occur for a CSP to be successful. These include developing new partnerships, upskilling/reskilling their workforce, changing the culture, and streamlining systems and processes. Continue reading “CSPs Need to Digitize, Automate, and become More Agile”→
AI and machine learning-powered video analytics are revolutionizing the video capabilities of public safety departments, with solutions like Scene from Nokia and Appearance Search from Motorola Solutions-owned Avigilon leading the way.
Further integration into other public safety infrastructure will be critical to leverage the full potential of this technology, but that presents a challenge, as many critical communications systems rely on siloed radio networks.
Video analytics has been a hot topic for the past few years, but only recently have we seen larger-scale deployments in the public safety sphere. Government spend on these technologies is set to increase in the coming years, and plenty of vendors are readying their portfolios to meet this demand. While there is a wealth of small players specializing in this field, Nokia has developed its Scene Analytics platform and Motorola Solutions purchased AI-based video analytics company Avigilon in March 2018. Both these vendors have seen some significant return on these investments, with Nokia launching its Scene Analytics service in Belgium through security company Room40. Meanwhile, Motorola Solutions has a host of wins for its Aviligon service across public safety, logistics, and education, including the New Bedford Housing Authority in the US, Express Cargo in Ireland and Copenhagen Business School in Denmark. Continue reading “Video Analytics for Public Safety Will Require Digital Transformation”→
• New trends in API security include supporting Istio service mesh technology as part of API management/security solutions
• Vendors are targeting solutions at developers looking to inject security early on in the API lifecycle.
Along with new application development architectures come heightened security concerns within the DevOps process. Enterprises are beginning to move into application modernization projects, adopting new architectures such as microservices and serverless computing. These next-generation architectures, which create distributed applications, require security participation beyond operations and security teams so that app developers and architects can help address new types of vulnerabilities. There is also greater interest in segmenting and monitoring the new app architecture (e.g., access control, authentication, metering, and throttling) so that enterprises have a better understanding of, not only security vulnerabilities, but also how their infrastructure is being used. Continue reading “Microservices Apps Prompt New API Security Solutions”→
• GAiA can be deployed on Google, AWS, or Azure clouds, or in a private cloud, on-premises data center, or in a bare metal environment.
• Customers can go to the GAiA public marketplace and download models developed by Tech Mahindra and others, and retune and retrain them for their own use.
Leveraging artificial intelligence to obtain better insights, make more informed predictions, and improve operations is a top priority for most mid-sized and large organizations. However, the process can be daunting. Developing models is time-consuming and skilled resources are scarce and expensive, leaving many organizations in search of solutions that will help them streamline the process. AI platforms strive to do just that by providing a comprehensive environment for developing, training, testing, sharing, deploying, and managing AI models. Continue reading “Tech Mahindra’s GAiA Platform Provides AI Marketplace and Model Lifecycle Management”→
• Cloud rivals are challenged to bundle DevOps and Serverless technologies
Enterprises continue to struggle with application modernization complexities involving new microservices and serverless computing architectures. As a result, public cloud providers are trying to do more of the heavy-lifting of infrastructure constructs through new DevOps solutions supporting event-based workloads.
During the recent AWS Summit, CTO Werner Vogels announced the general availability of EventBridge, which integrates operations’ external data and helps automate the DevOps processes within a serverless model. The concept is attractive to enterprises moving into cloud technologies because Amazon is acknowledging their need for application lifecycle management (ALM) technologies while having that data available, typically in a SaaS format, and tucked into the management services within AWS (e.g., AWS Consule/CLI/SDKs).
AWS EventBridge is a serverless event processing model based on CloudWatch Events and provides the integration between AWS apps and business systems important to operations teams, such as analytics and application performance management (APM). The event bus leverages Lambda serverless functions with the goal of further abstracting infrastructure complexities to DevOps members. Continue reading “AWS Highlights Trend Towards DevOps in a Serverless World”→
• AT&T positions its public safety network, FirstNet, not only as a highly significant win and lucrative opportunity, but also as the highest-performing, fastest, most secure wireless communications network for first responders.
• While Verizon may do less marketing, it remains a very strong player in the public sector, with its own benefits for first responders and a somewhat different approach to the market than its rival.
When AT&T won the FirstNet deal in 2017, it was seen as a major coup for the carrier and a big blow to mobile operator rivals. FirstNet is an independent authority within the U.S. Department of Commerce, authorized by Congress in 2012, with the mission to develop, build, and operate a nationwide, broadband network that equips first responders to save lives and protect U.S. communities. In 2017, after an open RFP process, a public-private partnership was forged between the federal government and AT&T. FirstNet agreed to provide 20 MHz of telecommunications spectrum and success-based payments of $6.5 billion over the next five years to support the network buildout; AT&T will spend about $40 billion over the life of the contract to build, deploy, operate, and maintain the network, with a focus on ensuring robust coverage for public safety. AT&T can also use FirstNet’s spectrum when it is not being used by public safety for other, commercial purposes but it must prioritize first responders over any commercial users. As of May 2019, AT&T had connected approximately 600,000 wireless devices to the network from 7,250 agencies, and offers FirstNet on Band 14 spectrum in 600 markets, roughly 50% of its eventual proposed coverage. The operator notes that 50% of these agencies are new to AT&T and were not just upgrades from existing customers. AT&T doesn’t just provide wireless connectivity to first responders (for both phones/tablets/fleets and IoT devices), but offers applications, specialized devices, enhanced security solutions, and satellite options. Flying Cells on Wings (COWS) were recently introduced, comprised of two tethered drones and a trailer equipped with a satellite dish and fiber connections, which are well suited to provide connectivity in hard to reach locations for emergencies such as wildfires and earthquakes. Continue reading “AT&T and Verizon Compete to Offer U.S. Public Safety Solutions”→
Synthetic DNA is seen as a solution to the challenge of how to store rising volumes of digital data generated by smartphones, tablets, and Internet-connected sensors.
Innovations by U.S.-based startup Catalog promise to speed up and reduce the cost of encoding digital data for DNA storage, potentially benefitting commercial adoption.
U.S.-based startup Catalog recently revealed that it had successfully stored all 16 gigabytes of Wikipedia’s English-language text on tiny DNA strands within a laboratory vial, in the latest demonstration of the power and potential of synthetic DNA as a medium for storing digital data. The accomplishment marks a new record for the amount of digital information to be stored on DNA. Catalog used prefabricated synthetic DNA strands to store the Wikipedia data, along with a DNA writing machine, which currently writes data at a rate of 4 megabits per second, but which Catalog wants to make at least a thousand times faster. Continue reading “Catalog Pushes Synthetic DNA Data Storage to New Heights, Promising to Aid Commercial Adoption”→