Corporate Giving and Social Responsibility – Should You Care?

S. Schuchart

Summary Bullets:

  • Knowing the social responsibility position of the vendors you do business with is important; what they do can reflect on you as their customer.
  • Keep an open mind and do your research; a vendor that aligns with your organization’s ethos and goals will help ensure a better relationship.

Corporate Social Responsibility – Keep It Real

Increasingly, customers are considering the social position of vendors from which they want to buy. Who you buy from reflects on the ethos of your company as well. Nobody wants to be doing business with a vendor perceived as evil or greedy. Therefore, many companies will not publicly reveal which vendors they use internally. The social position of your vendor is probably not even in the top ten requirements, but it should factor in somewhere. If you really want to partner with a vendor, your corporate ethos and attitudes should be at least roughly in the same direction. Continue reading “Corporate Giving and Social Responsibility – Should You Care?”

It’s All About ‘Me’

S. Schuchart

Summary Bullets:

  • Consumers are becoming aware that their personal data is being mined and misused. They will demand changes and control.
  • Companies, starting with IT departments, need to get in front of this trend and become more customer-conscious about personal data and privacy by giving customers control and choice about how their data is used before laws and regulations make it no choice at all.

The definition of ‘me’ is expanding. ‘Me’ used to be about personal identity and one’s physical person, perhaps even extending to the immediate family around you. ‘Me’ is getting bigger, though, and extends to a lot more things. ‘Me’ is now also anything about ‘me’ including metadata about me. ‘Me’ is the data I generate from just living, the things I do, the products I buy, the music I like to listen to, and the entertainment I enjoy. ‘Me’ is browsing habits, daily habits, the places I go, the things I stop and look at in stores; my preferences for temperature, color, and foods; even my face, my eyes, my fingerprints, the patterns of veins in my hands. Continue reading “It’s All About ‘Me’”

Blockchain Rivalry Rises: Microsoft Joins Hyperledger; IBM Rearchitects Platform for Kubernetes

Charlotte Dunlap – Principal Analyst, Application Platforms

Bullets:

• IBM’s next-gen platform addresses operational deployment issues with Kubernetes inclusion

• Salesforce poses competitive threat in 2020 with low-code approach

The competitive blockchain arena continues to heat up this week with Microsoft finally joining the Hyperledger OSS project, and IBM making inroads into multi-cloud support through new Kubernetes support. The moves follow Salesforce’s official entry into blockchain last month and inevitable disruption through its low-code platform support slated for 2020.

Recent vendor activities indicate increased customer pressure to make this emerging market sector more accessible to enterprises not familiar with the complex technology and perhaps lacking in adequate DevOps expertise. Blockchain platform updates are largely focused on acknowledging customer demand for improved ease of use, less up-front investment, and adherence to open-source software to ensure cloud portability and avoid vendor lock-in.
Continue reading “Blockchain Rivalry Rises: Microsoft Joins Hyperledger; IBM Rearchitects Platform for Kubernetes”

AT&T’s Smartphone Launch Signals a Different Approach to Kicking Off 5G

K. Weldon
K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

  • As operators start to roll out 5G and launch new handsets that can eventually take advantage of the technology’s speed and latency advantages, most have focused on the consumer market.
  • AT&T used a different approach this week in offering its new device solely to business customers and developers; it hopes these innovators and early adopters can help it find novel use cases which can aid in monetizing its network.

AT&T announced last week that, as of June 17, its new Samsung Galaxy S10 5G will be available to businesses that are on its Business Unlimited Preferred Plan for $999. This is the same price as its current Galaxy S10+ model, which has half the internal memory. The new model also has a bigger screen, better battery, and better camera than its predecessors. In addition, the operator is making the device available to roughly 100,000 developers next week through its Developer Program, at no charge through the end of the year. It is also sponsoring a 5G hackathon later this year at which developers have a chance to win $100,000. Continue reading “AT&T’s Smartphone Launch Signals a Different Approach to Kicking Off 5G”

NVIDIA Is Leveraging Its AI Strengths and a Broad Partnership Approach to Target Emerging Edge Computing Opportunities

Summary Bullets:

• NVIDIA’s new edge computing solution uses built-in AI capabilities to analyze and process data generated by IoT sensors close to the points of data collection.

• Leveraging a range of infrastructure partners and integrating with the leading public cloud providers should help to establish NVIDIA as a leading player in the growing edge computing subsector.

In recent weeks it feels as though every major technology company has become intent on capturing what they see as the emerging opportunities associated with edge computing, a burgeoning technology subsector that is being driven partly by rising enterprise innovation with the Internet of Things (IoT). Companies with notably strong strategies towards edge computing include telecoms network operators like Deutsche Telekom and AT&T, public cloud service providers such as Amazon Web Services and Microsoft, and IT infrastructure vendors like Dell EMC and Hewlett Packard Enterprise. Continue reading “NVIDIA Is Leveraging Its AI Strengths and a Broad Partnership Approach to Target Emerging Edge Computing Opportunities”

Salesforce Is Tackling Blockchain from a Frontend and Backend Perspective

C. Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

  • Salesforce Lightning Platform’s low-code app development technology is the cornerstone of its blockchain strategy.
  • MuleSoft will eventually add compelling backend integration capabilities to customers’ blockchain projects.

Salesforce used its annual developer conference to announce its entrance into the blockchain platform space last week, a compelling prospect considering its strengths in frontend app development via its low-code expertise and, more recently, backend integration capabilities through its newly acquired MuleSoft. Continue reading “Salesforce Is Tackling Blockchain from a Frontend and Backend Perspective”

NTT Recorded a Strong FY 2018 and Revealed Its 2019 Plan

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • NTT Communications recorded strong top-line performance in FY 2018, with revenue and income growth of 4.4% and 11.5%, respectively.
  • In FY 2019, the provider will focus on brand integration across NTT Communications, Dimension Data and NTT Security, as well as a vertical strategy through its ‘Smart World’ initiatives.

Top-Line Performance

Earlier this month (May 10, 2019), NTT Communications released its FY 2018 results (ended in March 2019). The provider recorded strong top-line performance, with growth in revenue and income by 4.4% to 1,392 billion yen (~US$12.7 billion) and 11.5% to 132 billion yen (US$1.21 billion), respectively. This growth may not be so high in general, but it is impressive considering the slowdown in the telecom and ICT market. For example, compared with its regional peers, both Singtel and Telstra saw flat revenue in their latest financial year, with changes of only 0.6% and 0%, respectively. NTT Communications’ FY 2018 revenue also exceeded its target set a year prior, by 12 billion yen (US$110 million). The increase was mainly driven by the double-digit growth in cloud (12.0%), solution services (11.9%) and global business (11.2%). Continue reading “NTT Recorded a Strong FY 2018 and Revealed Its 2019 Plan”

Geopolitical Issues Roil IT Sector

S. Schuchart

Summary Bullets:

• Cost sharing between vendors/SPs and customers can strengthen relationships in a difficult time.

• Calm and deliberate planning by vendors/SPs and customers is key to minimizing impacts to business.

The new tariffs on imported goods in China and the U.S. will have a significant impact on pending and future deals, both for service providers, vendors, and customers. The technology industry has a complex and deeply international supply chain, with U.S. and Chinese companies both utilizing components and intellectual property. Component price increases will lead to sharp increases in product costs. These increases will slow or stall deals as customers may wait and see if the issues can be resolved in a short time frame.
Continue reading “Geopolitical Issues Roil IT Sector”

Can We Use Blockchain to Thwart Fake News?

J. Marcus

Summary Bullets:

  • Digital media faces a ‘fake news’ problem where sources may be biased or worse, and actual content may be manipulated.
  • Orange is behind Safe.press, a blockchain-based consortium for certifying news sources as legitimate – and not ‘fake.’

As investigative journalists and whistleblowers struggle to be heard in calling out the rampant abuse of social networks in propagating ‘fake news,’ one startup is trying to tackle the issue with new technology. Continue reading “Can We Use Blockchain to Thwart Fake News?”

Facial Recognition: A Lightning Rod for Societal Concerns in San Francisco

R. Bhattacharyya

Summary Bullets:

  • San Francisco’s ban on the use of facial recognition technology by municipal agencies is noteworthy given the city’s high-tech affiliation and AI’s potential applications in public safety.
  • The safety-enhancing benefits of facial recognition are not resonating; instead, the technology has become a lightning rod for societal concerns related to privacy and inequality.

San Francisco is set to become the first major U.S. city to ban the use the facial recognition technology by municipal agencies. On Tuesday, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors voted in favor of the ‘Stop Secret Surveillance Ordinance,’ outlawing the use of the AI-based technology by city departments. The move is particularly noteworthy because it originates in a part of the U.S. otherwise known for embracing high tech and because it restricts the use of artificial intelligence for public safety, widely considered a top use case for facial recognition technology. However, San Francisco isn’t the only city evaluating restrictions on facial recognition; the issue is top of mind among lawmakers in many regions. Continue reading “Facial Recognition: A Lightning Rod for Societal Concerns in San Francisco”