IBM Pivots Toward Partner Ecosystem for Its Go-to-Market Strategy

S. Soh

Summary Bullets:

  • IBM has made a major change to its go-to-market strategy, focusing on developing its partner ecosystem and deploying its direct sales resources to engage the largest accounts looking for integrated solutions from IBM. 
  • This move is likely to result in more partners building specialization and expertise around IBM solutions. 

IBM held its Think Summit Australia & New Zealand in February 2021.  While hybrid cloud, AI, and digital transformation remained the key themes, the company also shed some light on the changes to its go-to-market strategy, particularly its investment in developing the partner ecosystem known as PartnerWorld.  IBM recently announced an investment of USD 1 billion in its partner ecosystem, with the aim of driving more sales through channel partners.  The investment is part of IBM’s new go-to-market strategy.  The company is simplifying its sales model by reducing the number of customer groups from 50 to just two.  IBM direct sales will utilize the IBM Garage to engage top-tier customers.  The rest of the IBM client base will be served by channel partners, which means significant opportunities for these partners. Continue reading “IBM Pivots Toward Partner Ecosystem for Its Go-to-Market Strategy”

Philippines on the Cusp of Cloud Revolution

M. Rogers

Summary Bullets:

  • While the Philippines is a rapidly growing cloud market, hyperscalers have not yet announced any plans for a Philippines region.
  • However, digital transformation, increased cloud usage, edge computing, and growing international connectivity offer opportunity for Philippine vendors to work with hyperscale providers.

GlobalData expects the Philippines to be a strong market for growth in cloud-based services that serve the enterprise (including IaaS, PaaS, and SaaS) as well as the consumer segment (e.g., streaming video, social media, and e-commerce). Based on our GlobalData Market Opportunity Forecasts to 2024: ICT in Philippines (August 28, 2020), enterprise spending on cloud services will grow from USD 1.8 billion in 2020 to USD 2.6 billion in 2024. Furthermore, cloud-based service usage is booming in the consumer segment as well, with social media and content streaming growing rapidly. Based on our Philippines Mobile Broadband Forecast (December 24, 2020), streaming mobile video users will grow from 53 million in 2020 to 80 million in 2024, while mobile social media users will grow from 75 million to 80 million over the same period. Continue reading “Philippines on the Cusp of Cloud Revolution”

API Management’s Rise to Power

C. Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

  • ALM technologies are being consolidated with API management, as enterprises seek improved management of business transformations.
  • Google illustrates API management’s growing importance via announcement of Apigee X’s new consolidated architecture.

API management’s ALM features are coming into focus, increasing the cloud’s value chain for companies tasked with accelerating digitization. Updated API management solutions are being infused with security, networking, and intelligent automation, moving beyond the management of API traffic and helping ops teams address new pain points including the detection of malicious intent and identification of anomalies, among other workflow automations. Continue reading “API Management’s Rise to Power”

Amazon Connect to Become Mainstream as Customers Move Contact Centers to the Cloud and Leverage AI/ML for Automation

S. Soh

Summary Bullets:

• Five new capabilities for Amazon Connect were announced at re:Invent 2020 that will allow agents and supervisors to be more efficient and effective.

• As enterprises move their contact center to the cloud, they should look at adding artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) capabilities to drive better customer experience.

Since the launch of Amazon Connect in 2017, AWS’ contact center solution has made significant progress and it is now a serious contender in the enterprise segment. The adoption will continue to accelerate as the pandemic drags on and companies move workloads more quickly to the cloud. This trend will benefit all contact center vendors, not just AWS, since most vendors have a cloud-based option to help customers make the transition at their own pace. However, AWS’ strengths lie within its operational scale and its partner ecosystem. More crucially, the hyperscale cloud provider is rapidly adding its AI and ML technologies to further strengthen the appeal of Amazon Connect. Continue reading “Amazon Connect to Become Mainstream as Customers Move Contact Centers to the Cloud and Leverage AI/ML for Automation”

Telco Edge Computing in ASEAN

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • Edge computing is still new in the ASEAN region, with very limited initiatives by providers and enterprises.
  • Providers and enterprises should start exploring the opportunity to gain a first-mover advantage.

The edge computing market is still new, but the ecosystem is developing fast with various initiatives and collaborations announced by key players in the last 12 months. This includes SK Telecom’s recent partnerships with VMware and Dell to offer edge computing in private 5G networking solutions (January 2021), AWS and Vodafone’s collaboration to roll out distributed multi-access edge computing (MEC) services in the UK (December 2020), Ericsson and Telstra’s initiative to develop enterprise use cases in verticals such as agriculture and smart cities in Australia, and many more. Edge computing has become a key focus for every provider across the technology stacks, including hardware vendors, cloud providers, telcos, and device manufacturers. Continue reading “Telco Edge Computing in ASEAN”

NCS Has Moved Out of Singtel Group Enterprise and Doubled Down on Digital Services

S. Soh

Summary Bullets:

  • NCS is investing in digital services, expanding its operations in China and Australia, and targeting key industry verticals.
  • NCS has gained greater autonomy moving out of Singtel Group Enterprise, to strengthen its regional capabilities in delivering digital solutions.

NCS, formerly National Computer Systems, was founded in 1981 to support the Singapore government’s initiatives related to IT implementation. It was acquired by Singtel in 1997, and it remains a key business within Singtel, delivering ICT solutions for enterprise customers both in Singapore and across Asia. According to Singtel, NCS has delivered revenue growth for seven years running. However, most of the business is generated in Singapore and especially within the public sector. NCS operated as a business unit within Singtel Group Enterprise for several years, but it has never been fully integrated with Singtel. The company has retained its brand name, and it has different capabilities than Singtel (e.g., consulting, business application services, AI, and automation) as well as a different business model (e.g., project-based, industry-focused, and bespoke solutions). Continue reading “NCS Has Moved Out of Singtel Group Enterprise and Doubled Down on Digital Services”

Monitoring and Observability to Play a Key Role in Digital Success in 2021

Charlotte Dunlap – Principal Analyst, Application Platforms

Summary Bullets:

• Monitoring and observability are being added to the DevOps arsenal of innovations alongside low-code and intelligent automation

• Early thought-leaders likely to integrate observability into platform services include: Red Hat, IBM, Datadog, Dynatrace, and AppDynamics

This year, more than ever, enterprises will need to pick and choose those key platform services most relevant to supporting app modernization which in turn helps accelerate digitization to combat the effects of a global pandemic and economic fallout. Observability systems will play a significant role in digitization of businesses. Continue reading “Monitoring and Observability to Play a Key Role in Digital Success in 2021”

COVID-19: The Contact Center Takes the Spotlight

G. Willsky

Summary Bullets:

• The COVID-19 pandemic has generated a seismic shift in contact centers on multiple fronts.

• Almost overnight, the strategic role contact centers play in supporting the customer experience has entered the spotlight.

The COVID-19 pandemic has generated a seismic shift in contact centers on multiple fronts. First, almost overnight contact centers have transformed from physical locations filled with agents and their supervisors to having a virtual presence where all staff work remotely. Second, now contact centers are the result of an evolution from voice-centric call centers as they handle multiple channels. Third, with options for in-person service limited or unavailable, contact centers have become central to managing the customer experience. How has the metamorphosis of contact centers transpired? That question will be examined in this post.

Continue reading “COVID-19: The Contact Center Takes the Spotlight”

RingCentral Jumps on the Freemium Bandwagon with RingCentral Glip Pro

G. Willsky

Summary Bullets:

  • RingCentral is playing catch-up to competitors such as Zoom, Slack, and Microsoft, which already offer freemium plans.
  • Offering a freemium plan is a double-edged sword, but there are steps RingCentral can take to avoid pitfalls.

RingCentral just introduced RingCentral Glip Pro, a freemium version of RingCentral Glip. RingCentral Glip Pro combines RingCentral Video videoconferencing introduced in April with team messaging, file sharing, contact, task, and calendar management capabilities. Offering a freemium plan enables RingCentral to close a gap with competitors. However, providing a freemium offer also presents potential pitfalls. Fortunately, there are steps RingCentral can take to avoid mishaps. Continue reading “RingCentral Jumps on the Freemium Bandwagon with RingCentral Glip Pro”

Collaboration: We Can Work It Out – or Can We?

G. Willsky

Summary Bullets:

  • The unprecedented size of the work-from-home (WFH) population has made ‘collaboration’ a marketing buzzword virtually overnight.
  • To compete in the collaboration space, service providers and vendors will soon need to offer a critical mass of specific capabilities.

A monumental byproduct of the COVID-19 pandemic is a WFH population of unprecedented size. Eager to preserve pre-pandemic productivity levels, companies everywhere are seeking to mimic the in-office work environment. Service providers and vendors have answered the call with an abundance of integrated tools intended to facilitate team collaboration. Virtually overnight, ‘collaboration’ has become a marketing buzzword. Continue reading “Collaboration: We Can Work It Out – or Can We?”