TM Forum Digital Transformation Asia 2018: No Longer Optional for Asian Carriers

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

  • Digital transformation is no longer an option for emerging market carriers today.
  • It is not just about adopting new technologies. Carriers must also transform to drive sustainable change.

This year’s TM Forum Asia event took place in Malaysia on November 13-15 with ‘digital transformation’ as the main theme. While the topic is not new in the industry, it is actually the right time in Asia. For many years, carriers have been offering enterprise solutions such as cloud, mobility, UC&C, and IoT and positioning themselves as digital transformation enablers in the market. However, many carriers in the emerging Asia markets are still quite behind with their internal journeys. These carriers are still stuck with their legacy infrastructures, processes, and mindset. Continue reading “TM Forum Digital Transformation Asia 2018: No Longer Optional for Asian Carriers”

GlobalData Cites Phase Two of Blockchain: Interoperability of Disparate Systems

C. Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

  • The industry is moving beyond the education and PoC stage into a second phase of proving blockchain apps in production via interoperability.
  • Operators are releasing blockchain solutions leveraging partnerships with platforms providers, including IBM and Microsoft.

Those in blockchain circles are throwing around the term ‘hype’ much less amid more practical discussions of late on how technology providers and systems integrators are actively building points of interoperability between disparate blockchain implementations and cloud platforms. The industry is moving beyond the education and proof-of-concept (PoC) stage and into a phase which aims to demonstrate how blockchain performs in production. This requires concrete steps towards interoperability among partners and various blockchain implementations. Interoperability with the promise of avoiding vendor lock-in is a key theme this quarter among leading providers and integrators such as IBM, Accenture, and AT&T. Continue reading “GlobalData Cites Phase Two of Blockchain: Interoperability of Disparate Systems”

Is the Idea of Blockchain Too Beautiful to Succeed?

B. Shimmin

Summary Bullets:

• If blockchain is such a good idea, why hasn’t the enterprise IT industry already put it to work at scale?

• As it turns out, the reasons behind blockchain’s slow rate of adoption are as complex and multifaceted as blockchain itself.

Blockchain has been in the news recently with a number of notable players announcing the creation of advantageous partnerships, industry-savvy consortiums, and operationalized use cases. In just the last two days, systems integration powerhouse Accenture announced an innovative mechanism to connect disparate blockchain platforms, while IBM together with Telefónica announced a joint effort to use blockchain to streamline international call routing operations. Both investment and positive speculation remain at an all-time high for blockchain. Continue reading “Is the Idea of Blockchain Too Beautiful to Succeed?”

Your Food Chain on Blockchain: The Coming Shakeup

C. Drake

Summary Bullets:

  • Blockchain digital ledger technology can make complex food supply chains more transparent, while delivering a range of benefits for food producers, distributors, retailers, and consumers.
  • However, these are early days for blockchain as a supply chain management technology, with limitations including the challenge of verifying the authenticity of data supplied to the platform.

Several innovative applications of blockchain, the distributed digital ledger technology, illustrate the technology’s potential use beyond its cryptocurrency origins. One promising application of blockchain is as platform for improving the efficiency and transparency of global food supply chains. Here, we are already seeing numerous applications of blockchain which promise to bring benefits to producers, retailers, and consumers. However, these are still early days for blockchain as a supply chain management tool and it is important to be mindful, not only of the technology’s potential as well as early successful applications within food supply chains, but also of its risks and limitations. Among them is the challenge of how to verify the authenticity of the data supplied to the blockchain. Continue reading “Your Food Chain on Blockchain: The Coming Shakeup”

Blockchain Platforms Vendors Jockey for Mindshare

C. Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

  • IBM touts advancements made in Food Trust, its blockchain solution for the food ecosystem.
  • SAP highlights three blockchain technologies built on SAP Cloud Platform: Hyperledger Fabric, MultiChain, and Quorum.

The buzz around blockchain is intensifying, and mindshare grabs among platform vendors are playing out through an upswing in strategy and ecosystem updates. Cloud platform providers are being pressed to define the early stages and use cases of this emerging market, which promises to modernize decades-old financial and supply chain systems into digital ledgers. GlobalData has reported that platform services providers are well suited to expand their cloud services to include blockchain, which represents an abstraction layer for making it easier to incorporate blockchain capabilities into applications improving developer productivity (please see “Blockchain Watch: App Platform Vendors Dominate in Laying the Groundwork for Digital Ledger Transformations,” September 10, 2018). Continue reading “Blockchain Platforms Vendors Jockey for Mindshare”

Brexit Is Forcing Business Decisions, but a ‘No Deal’ Scenario Puts the IT Focus Firmly on Risk Mitigation

J. Marcus

Summary Bullets:

  • Brexit is driving demand for risk management advice in IT as well as in financial and legal domains.
  • Integrators like DXC Technology are offering tactical and strategic solutions, suggesting the disruption of Brexit be used as an opportunity for transformation.

It should surprise no one that a ‘Brexit strategy advisory firm’ is a thing that exists. The increasing potential for the UK leaving the European Union in March 2019 without a trade deal in place is creating bittersweet opportunities not only for financial and legal advisors, but also in tech. Global IT services company DXC Technology has hooked up with specialist consultancy Brexit Partners as its UK and European customer base takes account of imminent risks. Other IT firms will soon be doing the same, if they’re not already. Continue reading “Brexit Is Forcing Business Decisions, but a ‘No Deal’ Scenario Puts the IT Focus Firmly on Risk Mitigation”

Microsoft Azure DevOps Touches on the Larger APLM Trend

C. Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

  • Microsoft has released Azure DevOps, a rebranding of VSTS, but also tools serving as its APLM contribution.
  • Modern application development architectures (microservices) and requirements (CICD) are driving the need for APLM.

Striving for a digital environment, enterprises are challenged to exploit the full benefits of cloud-enabled innovations, assembling solutions that combine and orchestrate both the business software and the infrastructure on which that software runs. While technology providers of switches, servers, cloud services, et al. have certainly set the stage for unified management, automation, and optimization, no single vendor is yet capable of managing the entire lifecycle of this amalgamation. Continue reading “Microsoft Azure DevOps Touches on the Larger APLM Trend”

Google Gives More Power to AI Within Its Data Centers, but the Biggest Opportunities Lie Ahead

C. Drake

Summary Bullets:

  • A newly autonomous AI algorithm operating Google’s data center cooling systems will be scrutinized to learn how AI can be applied to other areas of data center operations.
  • There are opportunities for Google to leverage its growing expertise in applying AI to internal operations by expanding the range of AI solutions it offers enterprise customers.

Google recently announced plans to give operational control over the cooling systems in its data centers to an artificial intelligence (AI) algorithm. Using this algorithm, Google has already achieved a considerable reduction in the energy consumed by its 15 globally distributed data centers, with both cost and environmental implications. However, this latest move is significant because it represents a major first application of AI to data center operational control systems on a large scale. The initiative also provides another example of how AI can be deployed in data centers in ways that improve their operational efficiency, including their consumption of energy resources. Initiatives like this are becoming more common and are often included under the ‘AIOps’ (artificial intelligence for IT operations) banner, a term that refers to the use of big data analytics, machine learning (ML), and other AI technologies to automate the management of IT systems and processes. Continue reading “Google Gives More Power to AI Within Its Data Centers, but the Biggest Opportunities Lie Ahead”

Apple, Facebook, and Google Won’t Destroy Denmark’s Environmental Achievements

C. Drake

Summary Bullets:

  • New data centers operated by Apple, Facebook, and Google will contribute to rising energy consumption in Denmark over the next decade, coinciding with a growing shortfall of renewable energy.
  • Despite concerns about their environmental impact, hyperscale Internet firms are supporting various energy efficiency initiatives, including energy recycling and new data center design and deployment methods.

A recent Danish government memorandum raised new concerns about the long-term environmental impact of data centers operated by large Internet companies such as Apple, Facebook, and Google. However, while such concerns should be taken seriously, they need to be understood within the context of wider initiatives by hyperscale Internet firms to improve data center energy efficiency. Continue reading “Apple, Facebook, and Google Won’t Destroy Denmark’s Environmental Achievements”

Apple v. Pepper Elevated to U.S. Supreme Court, Where Developers Seek Acknowledgment

C. Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

  • The U.S. Supreme Court is taking on the Apple v. Pepper antitrust case to determine whether the Apple iOS App Store represents an anti-competitive monopoly and, as such, whether users can sue Apple.
  • A ruling for Apple by the court will impact software developers’ ongoing role in providing the innovation behind mobile apps.

The newly pending U.S. Supreme Court case which will determine whether Apple’s App Store distribution model represents an anti-competitive monopoly could have far-reaching ramifications among software developers, whose collective brain trust is already at a premium and in great shortage. Continue reading “Apple v. Pepper Elevated to U.S. Supreme Court, Where Developers Seek Acknowledgment”