IBM Think: IBM Rallies Global Coders to Help Battle COVID-19

Charlotte Dunlap – Principal Analyst, Application Platforms

Summary Bullets:

• IBM Call to Code program builds momentum via prestigious partners and 300,000 global coders.

• IBM Cloud and Watson (AI) services are available to coders via open-source software (OSS) tools.

The power of technology to help solve real-world problems is perhaps most eloquently illustrated through the three winners of the COVID-19-related applications associated with IBM’s latest coding contest.

IBM’s two-year-old Call for Code Global Challenge campaign was initially launched in 2018 seeking innovative applications to address climate change. The program was expanded recently to include COVID-19, which spurred a massive response, including 1,000 developer registrations in a single day soon after being announced. Presently the program includes 300,000 developers across 168 countries. Continue reading “IBM Think: IBM Rallies Global Coders to Help Battle COVID-19”

Verizon’s Multi-Layer Approach to IoT Security

K. Weldon
K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

• While there are many approaches to IoT security, consumers and businesses still have reasonable doubt – will carriers and vendors be able to sway public opinion?

• Service providers talk about the need to provide security at every layer – at end and edge devices, for data in transit through multiple networks, and to cloud services providers and applications. Verizon is well on its way to realize this goal.

Every survey conducted by GlobalData on IoT (and every other one I have ever seen) over the past five years notes that the major barrier to adoption of IoT is still fear of the lack of end-to-end security and “the end” of data privacy. It doesn’t help that in-home devices such as cameras and voice assistants have already caused some famously embarrassing invasions of privacy. We are approaching a time when 5G-enabled low latency, high speed, and “massive” bandwidth availability may finally push IoT adoption towards the tens of billions of devices that have been predicted for years. But alongside this growth is a vision of billions of unprotected, unmanned devices in the field that are able to not only see and hear what humans say and use this data to sell products, but may cause serious breaches to business and government systems that have already been weakened by cyber-security malware and identity theft. Continue reading “Verizon’s Multi-Layer Approach to IoT Security”

COVID-19: Industrial Automation Has Become an “Essential” Business Process

K. Weldon
K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

• The definition of an essential business during the pandemic is an evolving one and includes more than just grocery stores, drug stores, and financial services. As the food supply may be in danger, the definition has expanded.

• To keep industries running that affect the national food supply, companies that provide industrial automation solutions that help ensure that manufacturing lines of food and beverage companies keep going are now considered essential.

After I got over my horror that my son was still expected to go into his company office three times a week, I learned that his business was considered an essential one, according to state COVID-19 definitions. This is because his company keeps manufacturing companies, which include food and beverage manufacturers, up and running, through industrial automation, robotics, and machine vision technology. I interviewed my son to find out how this works. Continue reading “COVID-19: Industrial Automation Has Become an “Essential” Business Process”

COVID-19: Banks Will Weather the Storm with Robust, Agile IT

C. Drake

Summary Bullets:

  • Efforts to bolster online banking and fintech apps in response to the COVID-19 crisis can significantly advance the digitalization of banking.
  • To help banks weather the COVID-19 storm, it is essential that they continue developing a supporting IT infrastructure that maximizes flexibility, agility, and efficiency.

Global banks currently face multiple challenges as a consequence of the COVID-19 crisis. However, it is vital that banks remain committed to ongoing digital transformation strategies. Many major banks have recently embarked on digital transformation journeys that involve the adoption of cloud-based IT architectures, fintech solutions, and the use of emerging technologies like artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain. Although the COVID-19 crisis has created short-term disruptions to banks’ normal operations, banks should prioritize the continuation of key IT transformation projects with a focus on their long-term benefits, including cost savings, operational efficiencies, increased business agility, and the ability to leverage new tools and capabilities. Continue reading “COVID-19: Banks Will Weather the Storm with Robust, Agile IT”

COVID-19: The Impact on ASEAN Enterprise ICT

A. Amir

Summary Bullets:

• Legacy ICT services make it more challenging for ASEAN enterprises to adapt to the changing business needs due to COVID-19.

• COVID-19 is driving digital transformation for most ASEAN enterprises and will open up a wider opportunity for carriers and service providers.

The impact of COVID-19 on ICT and vertical industries are widely covered on GlobalData COVID-19 Dashboard. With lockdowns (or shutdowns, state-of-emergency, or similar terms used per country) in nearly the whole world, the impacts on ICT spending are somewhat consistent globally. However, the impact in the Southeast Asia region (aka ASEAN) is different. Most enterprises are in a very early stage of their digital transformation journey. While newer services such as cloud, SD-WAN, and UCaaS have become the norm in other countries, a large majority of enterprises in this region still rely on the traditional ICT such as captive data center and traditional network services. The lack of agility and flexibility in these legacy services makes it more challenging for enterprises to adapt to changes due to COVID-19 such as remote workplace and digital customer channels. As a result, enterprises are shifting their current ICT priorities to focus on cloud migration, network re-dimensioning, UC deployment and/or expansion and digital services roll-out. Continue reading “COVID-19: The Impact on ASEAN Enterprise ICT”

COVID-19: Post-Crisis Outlook for 5G Adoption in the Enterprise

K. Weldon
K. Weldon

Summary Bullets:

  • While 5G for consumers will kick-start the appetite, enterprise 5G has long been considered the ‘real’ opportunity for a wide ecosystem of service providers and vendors.
  • With some operators delaying launches and standards bodies delaying updates due to COVID-19, when will we see the market take off?

While operators are seeing huge demand for core voice, data, and collaboration services among consumer and enterprise customers that need to leverage remote communication while social distancing, 5G is such a nascent technology that the addition of a global pandemic is bound to have a dampening effect on the market opportunity. In the consumer market, there is still no 5G iPhone (until September at the earliest), and in general, carriers are having some trouble explaining to customers why they need to upgrade to 5G. Even without the pandemic, there has been limited uptake of new and expensive 5G devices that don’t provide clear benefits, even though operators have not yet pushed up data plan prices. Continue reading “COVID-19: Post-Crisis Outlook for 5G Adoption in the Enterprise”

COVID-19: Under the Coronavirus Strain, Will Blockchain be the New Supply Chain?

C. Dunlap
C. Dunlap

Summary Bullets:

• Coronavirus demands illustrate the brokenness of traditional supply chain

• Blockchain methods emphasize trust and data strengths, but innovations are in early stages

The latest examples of the brokenness of the current state of the supply chain market are illustrated by the global pandemic.

COVID-19 has exposed the inability to access and mange adequate supplies of ventilators and PPEs, including proper visibility into the quality of expired and damaged goods unknowingly being sent to hospital workers. The issue demonstrates the need for an evaluation of how current supply chain systems supply, track, and manage goods and services. At the same time, the momentum behind blockchain as the answer for serving as a modern day supply chain alternative should be considered, but won’t be entirely straightforward, considering its recent emergence. Continue reading “COVID-19: Under the Coronavirus Strain, Will Blockchain be the New Supply Chain?”

COVID-19: IT Services Providers’ Digital Transformation Initiatives More Important Than Ever

R. Bhattacharyya

Summary Bullets:

• Overall, the response by IT services providers (ITSP) to COVID-19 has been muted, though this is starting to change.

• Now is the time to promote digital transformation initiatives related to workplace virtualization, cloud migration, hybrid or multi-cloud management, IoT, adoption of advanced analytics and RPA, and cybersecurity.

Overall, the response by IT services providers to COVID-19 has been muted. At the onset of the crisis, most made the appropriate and generic statements that were expected. They expressed concern for the safety and well-being of employees and clients, and sought to reassure customers that they had the systems and processes in place to continue to service their customers without disruption. Continue reading “COVID-19: IT Services Providers’ Digital Transformation Initiatives More Important Than Ever”

COVID19: No City Gets Smart in a Crisis: Three Ways Tech Vendors Can Help

Ted Cuzzillo,
Principal Analyst – Data Analytics

Summary Bullets:

• Technology vendors should stay away from cities during the height of the COVID-19 crisis unless they’ve got a relationship already.

• Make sure your solution fits the city’s ecosystem and be ready to educate city staff.

The pandemic seems to some data technology vendors like as a great time to be heroes with the frantic staff in cities’ public health departments. But the advice from those close to the action is clear: If you don’t have a relationship with the city already, stay home for now — and get ready for what comes next.

For now, as one observer noted, city public health staffs are getting by on old-fashioned techniques that were first validated during the London cholera outbreak of 1854. Continue reading “COVID19: No City Gets Smart in a Crisis: Three Ways Tech Vendors Can Help”

COVID-19: IBM Helps Clients Protect their Digital Assets and Keep Newly Remote Operations Online During the Pandemic

Amy Larsen DeCarlo – Principal Analyst, Security and Data Center Services

Summary Bullets:

• IBM is mapping its COVID-19 support efforts around seven major technology and business concerns relevant to clients during the outbreak, with business continuity and IT security being two key areas.

• Company executives think the move by so many organizations to remote work will accelerate major post-pandemic transformation projects.

The rapid shift of brick and mortar operations by enterprises and governments to a remote work model has placed technology companies front and center in the fight for business to survive. IT vendors and service providers are helping clients with everything from standing up new collaboration systems and providing critical connectivity to delivering AI-based tools to support customer communications with fewer call center resources. As one of the world’s largest providers of technology and professional and managed services, IBM has been leading a massive effort to help clients transition to and manage remote operations. Continue reading “COVID-19: IBM Helps Clients Protect their Digital Assets and Keep Newly Remote Operations Online During the Pandemic”