Malaysia Enterprise Telecom Update Q1 2022: Wider Industry Collaborations Despite Stagnant Growth in 2021

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • Telcos continued their momentum in expanding their enterprise ICT capabilities through collaborations with government agencies, but there was limited involvement from technology and industry players.
  • The business was stagnant in 2021 due to the decline of legacy services. 2022 will be more challenging for telcos as businesses are returning to the physical workplace.

Malaysian telcos started their 2022 enterprise ICT initiatives with public-private collaborations.  TM partnered with Technology Park Malaysia (TPM) and Huawei to develop MRANTI, an e-service platform to drive technology commercialization, while Maxis announced its collaboration with MIMOS and Huawei to build a 5G and AI hub to co-develop new enterprise use cases.  This quarter also saw 2021 financial results reported by major enterprise ICT telecom providers such as TM and Maxis.  For updates on the previous quarters, please see Malaysia Enterprise Telecom Update Q4 2021 – Acquisition Season for Telcos (January 12, 2022). Continue reading “Malaysia Enterprise Telecom Update Q1 2022: Wider Industry Collaborations Despite Stagnant Growth in 2021”

ASEAN 5G Q1 2022 Roundup: Beginning of 5G Network Slicing and the Platform Play

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • Singtel’s Paragon platform streamlines different 5G capabilities and can minimize the barriers to adoption of enterprise 5G solutions.
  • Leading providers such as Singtel and PLDT have started their initiatives on network slicing. This will enable wider enterprise 5G applications and private network solutions.

It was a slow start of the year for enterprise 5G in ASEAN, especially after strong momentum in 2021 with various industry collaborations and new feature launches (e.g., SA, MEC, private network).  There were only a few key announcements on new launches and partnerships.  Nevertheless, there were a couple of key milestones in market development in the region.  Singtel, one of the most advanced 5G providers in the region, launched an all-in-one 5G platform in the market.  This is crucial for driving enterprise adoption by streamlining diverse initiatives across various 5G capabilities such as private networks, edge computing, network slicing, and IoT.  This could also be the beginning of 5G platform plays enabling automated service provisioning and on-demand commercial models.  The second highlight is network slicing.  While the network slicing feature is still new in the market, several providers such as AIS, Singtel, and PLDT are taking a proactive approach to trials and include this feature in their 5G offerings to gain a competitive edge.  Other players are expected to build similar capabilities to close the gap in the near future. Continue reading “ASEAN 5G Q1 2022 Roundup: Beginning of 5G Network Slicing and the Platform Play”

Russia-Ukraine Conflict: Potential Impact on ASEAN ICT Industry

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • There is no immediate impact from the Russia-Ukraine conflict on the enterprise ICT sector in ASEAN, but there could be several indirect influences such as an increase in cyberattacks, rising energy prices, and more shortages in the global supply chain.
  • ASEAN businesses should strengthen their cybersecurity framework, expand the use of renewable energy, and accelerate updates and rollout of critical infrastructure.

It has been a week since Russia launched a large-scale military attack on Ukraine, and there have been various economic and supply-chain impacts across industries such as energy, manufacturing, automotive, and transportation, especially in Europe.  While there is no direct impact on the ASEAN ICT sector so far, there could be several potential indirect influences on the industry in the longer term. Continue reading “Russia-Ukraine Conflict: Potential Impact on ASEAN ICT Industry”

Malaysia enterprise telecom update Q4 2021 – acquisition season for telcos

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

• Maxis had one while Celcom made two acquisitions of ICT service companies in Q4 2021 alone.

• The acquisitions enable the providers to expand and enhance their portfolios, as well as challenge the existing players.

This report discusses major enterprise telecom events based on announcements from industry players in the recent quarter For more on the previous update, please see Malaysia Enterprise Telecom Update Q3 2021 – Even More Cloud Developments , November 17, 2021.

Professional services are becoming critical in the enterprise ICT market. New technologies are widening enterprises’ internal skillset gap and hence driving the need for managed services. As these service experts are becoming scarce, ICT providers are looking for inorganic solutions to enhance their internal capabilities and address the growing market demand. In the last quarter (Q4 2021), Maxis had one while Celcom made two acquisitions of service companies.

Maxis acquired MyKRIS: Maxis made its fourth acquisition in the last two years with MyKRIS, a managed network and security service provider. While MyKRIS’ networking portfolio somewhat overlaps with Maxis, it can enhance the latter’s services through network redundancy. More importantly, MyKRIS’ cybersecurity solutions and team of 70 experts can enable Maxis to expand its ICT portfolio particularly in cybersecurity through wider partnerships, and enhance its service capabilities. Besides, with accelerated technology adoption during the pandemic, cybersecurity requirements are getting more complicated. Cybersecurity is increasingly offered as an integrated solution with other ICT services such as cloud, networking, UC, and IoT. Aligned with Maxis’ direction in expanding its portfolio, the added capabilities can enhance its overall offerings and service delivery. Furthermore, the added capabilities can also enable Maxis to challenge competitors such as TM who has established cybersecurity practice through its CYDEC brand. For more, please see With MyKRIS, Maxis Makes Fourth Acquisition in 18 Months, Further Enhancing Its Enterprise Portfolio , October 14, 2021. Celcom acquired Bridgenet: Following its acquisition of Infront in November (for more, please see Celcom Acquired Infront to Enhance Cloud Service Capabilities and Go Beyond SMBs , November 8, 2021), Celcom made another deal in December with Bridgenet, an ICT service provider. While Bridgenet’s focus was largely on cybersecurity and networking, it has a range of other ICT solutions including cloud and UC. As Celcom is still new in the enterprise ICT market with a limited portfolio, Bridgenet’s solutions, partners, and experts can fast-track the provider’s strategy to expand its offerings and close the gap with competitors. The added capabilities can also strengthen Celcom’s position and enable it to expand its target market to the larger enterprise segment. For more, please see Celcom Ups Its Enterprise ICT Game with Bridgenet Acquisition , December 2, 2021.

In 2022, Celcom and Maxis are expected to add new services in their portfolio leveraging the capabilities from their acquisitions. There will also be enhancements in their existing services adding new vendor supports (e.g., multi-vendor SD-WAN) as well as integrating security with cloud and SD-WAN such as CASB and SASE. Further, the stronger professional services will also enable Celcom and Maxis to compete for more complex ICT projects such as enterprise 5G applications and multi-cloud services. They will continue to pressure the existing players such as TM ONE and other IT service providers leveraging their strong brands in the mobility and SME segments.

 

ASEAN 5G Q4 2021 Round-Up: Stronger Momentum in Vertical Collaborations

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

• Advanced telcos in ASEAN expanded their vertical collaborations and entered the trial and pre-commercialization stages of enterprise 5G applications while others started to form alliances with domestic players to co-create new solutions.

• Smart manufacturing, autonomous vehicles, and robotics are leading the enterprise 5G development in ASEAN, in line with the global trends.

Q3 2021 was about telcos moving from the network deployment to solution development stages (for more, please see ASEAN 5G Q3 2021 Roundup: Competition Heats Up, October 7, 2021). Moving into Q4 2021, telcos moved to the next development stage through wider collaborations with technology providers (e.g., network vendors, cloud providers) and other industry players to co-develop and trial new enterprise 5G solutions. While most telcos are still in the application development stages, providers such as AIS Thailand and Singtel Singapore are already in the field trial and pre-commercialization phases. In line with the global trends, applications like smart manufacturing, autonomous vehicles, and robotics are leading the enterprise 5G development. This is driven by tangible use cases such as improving operational efficiency and remote operation during the pandemic as well as wider involvement by players in the industry such as ABB, Bosch, Mitsubishi Electric, and Proton.

Continue reading “ASEAN 5G Q4 2021 Round-Up: Stronger Momentum in Vertical Collaborations”

ASEAN Network Challenges: Network Management and Security Get More Complex

Summary Bullets:

A. Amir

• Performance and reliability remain as key challenges for ASEAN enterprises largely due to carriers’ network limitations.

• Network management and security become crucial driven by enterprises’ rapid cloud adoption during the pandemic.

GlobalData interviewed 158 ASEAN decision makers earlier this year to further understand their challenges with current services and buying trends for new solutions. One of the topics is challenges in current network services. From the 12 challenges given, performance and reliability came as the top with 32% of enterprises rated it as a severe or major challenge. This is followed by network management 30%, security 27%, while management across cloud and unclear benefits rounded up the top five with 26% each.

Figure 1: Challenges with Network Services in ASEAN, 2021

Continue reading “ASEAN Network Challenges: Network Management and Security Get More Complex”

Malaysia Enterprise Telecom Update Q3 2021 – Even More Cloud Developments

Summary Bullets:

A. Amir

• The rapid increase in cloud demand is pushing providers to innovate and drive the market competition.

• Malaysian telcos continued to add new capabilities through acquisition and partnerships.

This report discusses major enterprise telecom events based on announcements from industry players in the recent quarter For more on the previous update, please see Malaysia Enterprise Telecom Update Q2 2021: Major Cloud Developments, July 27, 2021.

1. Maxis Launched Right Cloud: Maxis stepped up its cloud play with the launch of Right Cloud. Moving from the basic cloud service (IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS) player, Maxis Right Cloud offers multicloud solutions that manage workload across multiple environments. Further, it also offers Right Network, integrating its cloud with network services, and Right Expertise, for cloud professional services.

Continue reading “Malaysia Enterprise Telecom Update Q3 2021 – Even More Cloud Developments”

Malaysia Budget 2022 Enterprise ICT Takeaways: Sustainability and 5G Ecosystem

Summary Bullets:

A. Amir

• Sustainability is becoming increasingly important and should be part of enterprise ICT solution propositions.

• The TPM innovation hub will drive the enterprise 5G ecosystem and development in the country.

The Malaysian government announced the country budget for 2022 last week, allocating MYR332 billion ($80 billion) on operating and development expenditure as well as the COVID-19 Fund. The theme of the budget is mainly around economic recovery from the pandemic and there are also various initiatives in the overall ICT industry such as connectivity expansion in underserved areas, more funds for startups, and additional digital adoption grants for enterprises. However, sustainability and 5G ecosystem are rather new and would have higher impacts on the domestic enterprise ICT market.

Sustainability and Environmental

Initiatives: The government announced several initiatives such as the Voluntary Carbon Market to facilitate carbon credit trading and the Low Carbon Transition Facility to drive enterprises to adopt sustainability practices.

Continue reading “Malaysia Budget 2022 Enterprise ICT Takeaways: Sustainability and 5G Ecosystem”

PLDT Digicon: A Sustainable Smart City Starts at the Infrastructure Layer

Summary Bullets:

A. Amir

• A sustainable smart city should consider the deployment goals, but also the underlying infrastructure.

• PLDT checks most boxes in the infrastructure and technology layers as well as in the other ICT domains but it could consider further expanding its capabilities in the professional services and partner ecosystem.

PLDT’s Sustainable Smart City Initiatives

In the Philippine Digital Convention (Digicon) 2021, PLDT shared its initiatives and capabilities in driving sustainable smart city adoption and helping industries to achieve goals in the sustainability three pillars: economic, environmental, and social. On the application layer, PLDT offers a range of smart city solutions across verticals in line with the sustainable smart city goals. This includes remote learning in education, COVID response in healthcare, and emergency response in public safety. As an ICT provider, PLDT also continues to build the underlying infrastructure to enhance existing applications and enable new sustainable smart city solutions. It has 15 subsea cables including Jupiter, Asia Direct, and Apricot, and 12 point-of-presence (PoPs) across the world to offer reliable global interconnections. Domestically, it has over 540,000km of fiber providing high-speed connectivity nationwide as well as more than 4,000 5G base stations covering major Philippines cities. Besides connectivity, PLDT has 10 interconnected data centers that deliver 9,000 racks and 27 MW of power to host enterprises applications and workloads. Further, in line with its sustainability agenda, it is working to achieve 1.4 power usage effectiveness (PUE) for its facilities, source at least 20% of its data centers’ power consumption from renewable energy, and obtain Leadership in Energy and Environment Design (LEED) and ISO 50001 certifications.

Continue reading “PLDT Digicon: A Sustainable Smart City Starts at the Infrastructure Layer”

ASEAN 5G Q3 2021 Roundup: Competition Heats Up

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • The domestic competitions across ASEAN are heating up as providers are moving from network deployment to the solution development stage.
  • Leading providers are starting to commercialize their edge computing services and gain a first-mover advantage.

The enterprise 5G market in ASEAN is moving from network deployment to the solution development stage, led by early adopters such as the Philippines, Singapore, and Thailand.  Most telcos in these countries such as Globe, PLDT, M1, Singtel, Starhub, and AIS have enabled 5G standalone (SA) networks to support a wider range of enterprises applications through edge integration, lower latency, and network slicing.  The competition at the country level is also heating up, as providers are beginning to commercialize the solutions they have been developing through industry collaborations.  This includes Singtel’s edge computing and AIS’ 5G smart manufacturing solutions.  Service providers are also expanding their collaboration initiatives with enterprises from across verticals and are expected to launch more applications in the market in the near term.  AIS and Globe are Singtel’s associates; hence, the three providers could also gain an advantage in 5G solution development in their respective markets through knowledge and partner sharing. Continue reading “ASEAN 5G Q3 2021 Roundup: Competition Heats Up”