Singtel launched Liquid-X, a software-defined, cloud-based networking platform integrating multicloud connectivity, analytics and security for network management.

The solution addresses the growing need for an all-in-one cloud-based solution for enterprises to gain centralised control, flexibility and scalability when managing different networks around the world

“The global pandemic has driven more enterprises to rely on the cloud to host their data and solutions. For enterprises with global operations, it is a challenge to manage multiple clouds hosting their workloads as each cloud requires a separate connectivity,” said Lim Seng Kong, the Managing Director for Singtel Enterprise Business at Group Enterprise.

Liquid-X will be supported by Singtel’s network infrastructure in 362 cities and partnerships with major public cloud and cloud-based software providers. The solution also leverages Singtel’s self-service portal, MyConnect, for its analytics function by selecting the most suitable cloud or internet service provider.

Cloud connectivity is achieved by integrating Liquid-X with Singtel’s Managed Software-Defined Wide Area Network, which covers 20 SD WAN gateways worldwide, for performance monitoring, secure traffic routing and access to public clouds.

Liquid-X represents Singtel’s vision of their digital transformation by combining leading-edge software-defined technologies, network analytics and security for global cloud connectivity.

By Simi Kaur, Tech Reporter

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Video management system company Panopto has launched a new data center in Sydney, Australia, offering cloud-based video recording solutions to enterprises and higher education institutions in Australia and New Zealand.

The Panopto Cloud operates on multiple Amazon Web Services (AWS) availability zones, with the new data center established to respond to the accelerating global demand for video management capabilities to support distance learning and remote work.

“In the past year, demand for Panopto in Australia and New Zealand has surged, mirroring our global growth. The Panopto Cloud is built to scale, and we’re expanding in direct response to the rapid growth in distance learning and remote work,” said Sean Gorman, COO of Panopto.

Panopto Cloud leverages server redundancy technology to eliminate single points of failure to provide reliable access to Panopto in case of server failures.

Major universities, such as the University of Waikato in New Zealand, have begun storing content on the data center for its cloud-first system strategy.

“By storing our content in-region, Panopto is demonstrating its commitment to their customers in this region and it allows us to reduce operational costs whilst providing world-class continuity of service for our students and faculty,” said Eion Hall, CIO at the University of Waikato.

The Panopto Cloud is built on a multi-tenant architecture for high elastic scalability and enhanced security.

By Jie Yee Ong, Tech Reporter

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Data center giant Equinix has announced plans to invest $55 million on the construction of a data center in Osaka, Japan.

The data center is set to be the company’s third International Business Exchange (IBX) facility, named OS3.

Osaka’s rising digital and financial hub

Home to many innovative startups, Osaka is fast becoming Japan’s newest digital and financial center.

“With the rising adoption of digital transformation, together with the acceleration of advanced technology such as AI and IoT, we are expecting a strong growth of demand for digital infrastructure in Japan, despite the short-term economy slowdown amid COVID-19,” said Mimei Ito, Research Manager for IT Services at IDC Japan.

Osaka ranks just behind Tokyo in terms of concentration of businesses in the country, with many firms in the region involved in important sectors such as energy, financial services, medical services, and manufacturing.

The expansion of the Equinix data center in Osaka reflects a rapid increase in the deployment of digital workloads among enterprises and their customers in Japan’s second-largest metropolitan area, which is expected to accelerate further through enhanced interconnectivity of cloud ecosystems.

“As a large metropolitan area with many global and locally based enterprises, Osaka has emerged as a significant market. In the past years, we have seen rising demand for secure, high-performance, and low-latency connectivity in the Kansai area,” said Kuniko Ogawa, Managing Director of Equinix Japan.

OS3’s establishment is hoped to contribute greatly to the digital ecosystem in the region, offering close proximity to major internet and peering exchanges along with low latency connections to nearby major cities such as Kyoto and Kobe.

“With our planned OS3 IBX data center, backed by our global footprint and vast array of services offered on Platform Equinix, we are set to expand our ability to bring together and interconnect the infrastructure that businesses need to fast-track their digital advantage,” Ms. Ogawa continued.

Expanding connectivity

OS3 will integrate Equnix’s interconnectivity solution, Equinix Fabric, to allow businesses to connect between their own distributed infrastructure and any other company’s cloud infrastructure.

“The expansion of the Equinix data center in Osaka reflects a rapid increase in the deployment of digital workloads among enterprises and their customers in Japan’s second-largest metropolitan area. This is expected to accelerate further through enhanced interconnectivity of cloud ecosystems,” said Ms. Ito.

The first phase of the facility is expected to be approximately 33,000 square feet wide, providing over 900 cabinets of storage space. When completed, it will have up to 2,500 cabinets in a 89,340 square feet space.

Jeremy Deutsch, President of Equinix Asia-Pacific, commented: “Our expansion in Osaka marks another key milestone in our ongoing plans to deliver Platform Equinix to more businesses in the fast-growing Asia-Pacific region. With our world-class infrastructure and solutions, we will continue to be the trusted partner of digital leaders by enabling them to seize the opportunity with agility, speed and confidence.”

Equinix’s two existing IBX data centers in Osaka currently host content for over 130 companies in a 64,500 square feet colocation space.

Earlier this year, Equinix announced a US$1 billion joint venture with GIC to develop and operate hyperscale data centers in Japan. The three initial facilities, one in Osaka and two in Tokyo, will serve the unique core workload deployment needs of a targeted group of hyperscale companies, including the world’s largest cloud service providers.

By Jie Yee Ong, Tech Reporter

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Telecommunications company Mitratel and property management consultant Pos Properti have partnered to further develop digital infrastructure like ICT and IoT in Indonesia.

In a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by the state-owned enterprises, Miratel and Pos Properti will also work to support 5G readiness in the country.

“The signing of this memorandum of understanding opens the initiation of mutually beneficial strategic cooperation by utilising the potential, expertise and facilities owned by Mitratel and Pos Properti for infrastructure development and communication technology services in an effort to support 5G readiness in Indonesia,” said Teddy Hartoko, President and Director of Mitratel. 

The collaboration will include a feasibility study for the deployment of these technologies.

Indonesia’s digital transformation potential

As an emerging market in Southeast Asia, Indonesian corporations have been actively pursuing digital transformation strategies and partnerships to unlock the region’s tech potential. Huawei’s and Microsoft’s collaboration with the government are latest examples of international tech giants working to push the country towards greater digitalisation.

Mitratel currently has more than 22,000 cell towers in the country, and possesses expertise in important areas in IoT, including disaster management and smart monitoring. The collaboration is expected to benefit different industries that both companies are involved in, including businesses in economic, financial, legal, and operational sectors.

By Jie Yee Ong, Tech Reporter

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Dell Technologies has released its financial results for the third quarter of its 2021 fiscal year, seeing a 3% increase in year-on-year revenue growth to US$23.5 billion.

Operating income was at US$1.1 billion, a 35% year-on-year increase, while net income was US$881 million, a significant 60% year-on-year growth compared to $552 million in Q3 2019.

“Technology has never been more important, and as the world evolves, so does our business,” said Jeff Clarke, Vice Chairman and Chief Operating Officer of Dell.

Several factors contributed to the rise in revenue across business categories, including unprecedented demand for remote work, as well as learning and gaming solutions.

“In the third quarter, we drove value by expanding profitability at a significant multiple of revenue and generated $3 billion in operating cash flow,” said Tom Sweet, the Chief Financial Officer of Dell.

Dell accelerated their as-a-Service strategy and hybrid cloud capabilities at the edge with a view to win in these growing markets and make it easy for customers to manage data and workloads across their operations.

“We delivered differentiated performance through our diversified portfolio and are leaning into growth opportunities while managing operating expenses in a disciplined way,” Mr. Sweet added.

In October, Dell announced the expansion of its as-a-Service capabilities with Project APEX to unify PC and IT infrastructure and deliver simplified solutions.

By Jie Yee Ong, Tech Reporter

More and more businesses of all shapes and sizes are moving to the cloud, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, but without effective cybersecurity measures in place, you could be at risk of opening the floodgates to cybercriminals stealing data, holding you to ransom and damaging your business.

With 83% of enterprise workloads expected to be in the cloud by this year, multiple studies have found cyberattacks on cloud systems are exponentially growing.

“I’m concerned with COVID-19 and rush to the cloud to rapidly scale up. They are all moving in fast, and security becomes the least of their concerns or they don’t have a budget for it at that point,” said Alex Ng, the Director of Insyghts Security.

With so many cloud migration options available, from Software-as-a-Service, Platform-as-a-Service, and the fast-growing Infrastructure-as-a-Service, the cybersecurity threats are becoming bigger and spreading faster, and the damages to your business could become untamable.

So how can we fight back?

Your livelihood is at stake

The damaging impacts to your business from cybercriminals are very real, from financial loss to reputational damage.

It is forecast that cybercrime will cost the world in excess of US$6 trillion by next year, and this year the first death following a ransomware attack on a German hospital was recorded.

“I have had customers transfer money to cybercriminals because they claimed to be their vendor, then they ask what they can do. I told them, the only thing I can do is advise you to make a police report because it’s already too late,” said Mr. Ng.

These attacks are commonly caused by human error within an organisation through phishing attacks, poor password protection, lack of reviewing protection regimes and poor training on new systems like cloud-based infrastructures.

“The weak link in an enterprise is always the people and the system that manages the people. You can have the best system, process or training regime, but if the people don’t follow it and still click on phishing attack links, then there’s only so much you can do,” said Mr. Ng.

There are also threats that manifest over longer periods of time and zero-day threats that are exploiting software and infrastructure vulnerabilities in businesses without a strong set of good policy, practices, infrastructure, management systems and people to monitor and manage the risks.

“For security operations teams, when you move to cloud at scale, that means a lot more data in all sorts of environments like the cloud, SaaS, and IoT. The amount of data they have to handle is becoming unmanageable,” commented Mr. Ng.

This is why Mr. Ng advises businesses to look for a managed security service provider (MSSP) that is able to track insider threats and those that manifest over time with a comprehensive security monitoring service that is fast to respond to modern infrastructures like cloud and hybrid environments.

“Most providers are good at point incident like a brute force attack, but if there is an insider or an outsider that has already penetrated their enterprise environment via a vulnerability, which it sits there for weeks and slowly gathers pace, some providers may miss that,” said Mr. Ng.

Are you at risk?

Typically, medium and small sized enterprises, as opposed to larger organisations with larger budgets and bigger workforces, neglect cybersecurity measures and become open targets for cybercriminals. Approximately 43% of small businesses were the victims of data breaches.

“They tend to overlook the need to review or rearchitect how the applications or servers are deployed, secured and monitored in the cloud,” added Mr. Ng.

From an application point of view, organisations leverage cloud-native architectures like Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) or certain features that are part of cloud infrastructure providers like AWS or Azure.

This typically requires applications to be redeveloped when moving to the cloud, but in the haste of moving to the cloud, enterprises could risk missing out security practices or configurations like zones and access control lists that are less common in on-premise architectures.

“Even before the COVID-19 pandemic, enterprises are already moving to cloud. Although it’s not new, there are some that still lack the understanding of how a public cloud works. Some enterprises think they are essentially secure by just moving to the cloud and forgot the shared risk model,” said Mr. Ng.

As a result, cloud-based infrastructures and applications can amplify vulnerabilities and weak controls like coding practice, identity access and privileged access management for both internal and external individuals logging into the infrastructure.

“When you move to public cloud, you may want to look into zero trust access management because so many more people can access the cloud and your data, so you want to trust no-one and control who actually has access and monitor what they do on the infrastructure,” advised Mr. Ng.

Out with the old

Failure to adhere to best practices like neglecting three tier architectures and Network-based Intrusion Prevention Systems (NIPS), a lack of access control or even simple patching regime to update your applications and internal data centers can put your business at serious risk.

Last year, Security Boulevard  found that 60% of security breaches involved unpatched vulnerabilities where a patch was available but not applied.

“We have seen customers that have servers so old and unpatched because they are so worried about the application going down. This is scary. When they move to the cloud, they should have a good patching and vulnerability management regime, as well as an incident management system and effective monitoring of cloud resources,” said Mr. Ng.

To avoid the risks from legacy infrastructures, key decision makers in an enterprise must find the motivation to upgrade the system and mindset to continuously educate, or else they will be held ransom by the application.

Mr. Ng has seen customers with old applications and unsupported servers struggle to find ways to extend support by buying additional security software to support the legacy system. However, he believes this is the wrong approach, as enterprises will ‘eventually need to move out of the application and build a new one if the budget allows’.

“The IT world keeps changing, the security world keeps changing, and the hackers are evolving. Virtual patching can buy you some time, but it is not the fix. If you don’t evolve with the flow of time, you will have problems in the future,” said Mr. Ng.

Cybersecurity teams should take some time to review the increasingly new and sophisticated risks, put forth a strategy to narrow the gap, and adopt technologies and systems to monitor these threats. The CISO or vCISO should be able to help the organisation measure their risk, balance business and cybersecurity objectives, develop a strategic plan and oversee a ISMS in place to bring the organisation eventually to the desired security maturity state.

How can we stop the cybercriminals?

Beyond the visibility, strategy and plan, and controls that need to be in place, you need good visibility on the threats on an ongoing basis. Without a good platform to perform fast analytics, enhanced with a level of artificial intelligence, the amount of data security operation center (SOC) teams will become unmanageable, leading to increased cybersecurity vulnerabilities.

To future-proof and protect your business, Mr. Ng suggests looking at MSSP with monitoring system that leverages big data, solutions using AI, and User and Entity Behavior Analytics (UEBA) to manage the exponentially growing amount of data and automate some of the work for your security team. This can bring about savings of time and resources that can be transferred back to the business.

“You need to look for one that is able to build that attack chain up and then alert the customer that this is a potential threat and not just an incident,” advised Mr. Ng.

For enterprises moving to the cloud, it is important to look for a MSSP that understands public, private and hybrid cloud environments, with connectors to SaaS and platform providers like SAP and Salesforce.

“Meaningful monitoring is crucial, but I don’t think a lot of existing providers are equipped to handle the different types of cloud services, there will be a lot of data from different cloud sources, and you need some tools to help monitor and manage the threats,” said Mr. Ng.

In recent years, other security monitoring solutions like extended detection and response (XDR), endpoint detection and response (EDR) and managed detection and response (MDR) have entered the cybersecurity scene to collect data from various digital environments and infrastructures.

“These focus on the endpoint portion and not monitoring the entire company’s data assets. Your security monitoring, EDR or XDR needs to include an integrated approach,” said Mr. Ng.

To have a successful integrated approach, you need to collect data from all systems to build a strong database of threats and potential threats in your system. For example, you need to collect contextual information from user, infra and cloud, and other data from server and endpoint, etc, to track how the threats are moving from one stage of attack to another.

“All the data necessary. If you have just part of the solution, then it would be like monitoring a data center without looking at the endpoint. It’s insufficient,” advised Mr. Ng.

Insyghts Security leverages a strong analytic platform with threat model mapped to industrial framework, such as MITRE ATT&CK, etc, as based threat modelling to track multi-stage threats that will manifest over a period of time. MITRE ATT&CK is described as a comprehensive compilation of tactics and techniques used by cyberattackers, which help security teams identify potential threats and understand how they move from different stages of attack.

To complement all this data, businesses need a dedicated security operation team to manage the day-to-day operations to respond to incidents, triage and recommend remediation and recovery options for endpoints and services.

“XDR only gives you the data. You still need people to dig it out and do some form of threat hunting to find a breach and fix it. It doesn’t just magically happen and you still need the people there. That is why an integrated approach and the people are so important,” said Mr. Ng.

Organisations reach out to Insyghts Security for their deep knowledge of traditional infrastructure, secure hosting environments and cloud services experience, particularly when businesses may not have a full security team with a lack of training.

“There are different types of MSSP and consultants. Some consultants focus mostly on information security management, and solution providers offer point solutions that don’t happen to cover the end-to-end scope to threats faced by the organisation,” said Mr. Ng.

Insyghts Security provides enterprises with end-to-end gap analysis of their security maturity, capabilities to respond to threats, propose and architect improvements, offer strategies, manage the security services and security monitoring.

“We pride ourselves by having deep knowledge and we pair this with a strong security practice and consultancy at a price point that is attractive to mid-size companies. We can definitely help large enterprises, but we pride ourselves on the mid-size companies because they are the precise companies that we think are in need because they are usually resource or cash strapped and they need a lot of care in managing their information security and cybersecurity,” added Mr. Ng.

For enterprises that may not have a Chief Information Security Officer (CISO), Insyghts Security offers a virtual CISO to provide a pool of cybersecurity experts who help translate an organisations’ business requirements into a security need and build a strategy to improve their security practises at a fraction of the cost of a full-time CISO.

Even businesses with an internal CISO can benefit from a vCISO by receiving add-on services to help them meet their key performance indicators and feel reassured that their strategies are sound.

“The CISO can sleep in peace when they know their objectives and security is inline and there is a plan to improve them,” said Mr. Ng.

Overall, Insyghts Security aims to make cybersecurity affordable, so that businesses of all sizes can stop the cybercriminals and protect their livelihoods.

What should you do next?

You could look at cybersecurity as a three-step process. One, know what you don’t know and visibility into the weak points. Two, put in place policies, controls and solutions for what you now know is lacking. Three, have a dedicated internal or outsourced team to deliver the security practice, controls and solutions, and day-to-day operation necessary to keep threats at bay.

Just like a security guard needs to know all weak points of a building, you need to have the visibility to monitor all forms of threats in your digital environment by tracking vulnerabilities, perpetrators and insider and outsider dangers.

Would you leave your door wide open at night? Would you leave your car unlocked?

Your business now has digital infrastructures that will become more complex than ever before and need protecting with a proper strategy and a team of virtual and human security guards.

> Protect your business against threats with Insyghts Security

By Stuart Crowley, Editor, W.Media

SK hynix, South Korea’s second biggest chipmaker, has announced plans to buy the NAND memory chip business of semiconductor giant Intel for US$9 billion.

SK hynix said it will acquire Intel’s factory in Dalian, China as well as its NAND flash and solid-state drive businesses, excluding its advanced memory technology unit, Optane.

“I am pleased to see SK hynix and Intel’s NAND division, which have led the NAND flash technology innovation, work to build the new future together,” said Seok-Hee Lee, the CEO of SK hynix.

Intel and SK hynix will work together to ensure a seamless transition for customers, suppliers and employees. The two companies will work collaboratively as they did recently with DDR5, to better serve the growing demand from the memory-based semiconductor ecosystem.

“By taking each other’s strengths and technologies, SK hynix will proactively respond to various needs from customers and optimise our business structure, expanding our innovative portfolio in the NAND flash market segment, which will be comparable with what we achieved in DRAM,” added Mr. Lee.

The deal will allow SK hynix to become the world’s second-largest NAND flash chip producer, overtaking Japan’s Kioxia and narrowing the gap with market leader Samsung Electronics, as the shift to work-from-home boosts demand for chips used in tablets and servers.

According to market researcher TrendForce, SK hynix was the world’s fourth-largest NAND flash maker with 11.7% revenue share in the second quarter of 2020, while Intel was ranked sixth with 11.5% revenue share. Samsung Electronics led the market with 31.4% share, followed by Japan’s Kioxia with 17.2%.

With the acquisition, SK hynix, part of South Korean conglomerate SK Group, will have a market share of 23.2%.

Bob Swan, Intel’s CEO said, “I am proud of the NAND memory business we have built and believe this combination with SK hynix will grow the memory ecosystem for the benefit of customers, partners and employees. For Intel, this transaction will allow us to further prioritise our investments in differentiated technology where we can play a bigger role in the success of our customers and deliver attractive returns to our stockholders.”

Most of SK hynix’s revenue currently comes from the DRAM business, where SK hynix ranks as the world’s second-largest supplier. In the second quarter, the company logged sales of US$7.5 billion (8.6 trillion won), with customers like Apple, Huawei and Microsoft. Its NAND flash business accounted for 24% of the company’s sales in the second quarter, with SSD sales making up nearly half of its NAND flash revenue.

The NAND Flash industry grew between April and June thanks to robust demand for PCs and servers, as the COVID-19 pandemic forced millions of people to work from home, according to market researcher TrendForce.

George Davis, Intel’s Chief Financial Officer, said in March that while the flash memory business showed promise, with a growing market in data centers, the company hadn’t been able to generate the profits it wanted.

SK hynix will pay Intel US$6.9 billion (8 trillion won) by 2021 to acquire Intel’s Chinese production facility and SSD unit, while it will pay the remaining US$2.017 billion (2.3 trillion won) by March 2025 to complete the deal.

Intel intends to invest transaction proceeds to deliver leadership products and advance its long-term growth priorities, including artificial intelligence, 5G networking and the intelligent, autonomous edge.

Intel’s shares were up nearly 3% after the announcement from SK hynix.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Explore the state of South Korea’s cloud and data center market with W.Media

As one of the most innovative countries in the world, South Korea has exciting cloud and data center markets. But will the country continue to be a shining star in the next five years?

Register now to find out by joining W.Media’s action-packed South Korea Cloud & Datacenter Digital Summit on Wednesday 11 November!

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

> View all W.Media digital events

Stuart Crowley

Editor, W.Media

editor@w.media

Lintasarta, Indonesian data communications and internet service provider, announced it has achieved a 99.982% service level agreement figure with its corporate clients after adopting data center solutions by Schneider Electric.

Going forward, Lintasarta will deploy sustainable data center solution, EcoStruxure for Data Centers by Schneider Electric, on three of its colocation data centers in South Tangerang, Banten.

“EcoStruxure for Data Centers has been proven to increase energy consumption efficiency by up to 38%, energy cost efficiency by up to 30%, increase productivity up to 60% and data center uptime by up to 100%,” said Yana Achmad Haikal, Business Vice President for Secure Power Division and Energy Management Business at Schneider Electric Indonesia.

Collaboration between the two has been ongoing for a while, as Schneider Electric’s solutions have been deployed in two Lintasarta data centers in Indonesia, in TB Simatupang, Jakarta and Jatiluhur, West Java.

To date, Lintasarta’s tier three colocation data centers have served 2,400 clients across multiple sectors, including telecommunications, finance, oil and gas.

“Through the solutions offered, we hope that Schneider Electric is able to address the challenges that the industry is facing at this time so that it suits the different needs of each industry,” said Ginandjar Alibasjah, Director of IT Services at Lintasarta, during the Innovation Summit East Asia 2020.

Lintasarta has committed to continue improving the quality of their services and SLAs through more cost efficient and eco-friendly data centers.

An SLA is a formal agreement that lays out the expected level of service between a vendor and its customers once both parties work together. It is measured by key operations or goals, such as the form, quality, speed, and reliability of services.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Image credit: Reuters

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Equinix has beat analyst estimates for Q3 2020 and has lowered their predicted impact of the COVID-19 pandemic from US$50 million forecast in May to US$20-30 million.

Equinix’s revenue was up 9% to US$1.520 billion compared to the same quarter last year, marking the data center provider’s 71st consecutive quarter revenue growth and beating estimates from Zacks REIT and Equity Trust by 1.14%.

“As businesses navigate the economic, health and societal changes happening in the world, Equinix is in a unique position to help our customers adapt, respond and accelerate their digital transformation – a key driver for economic recovery,” said Charles Meyers, the President and CEO of Equinix.

Equinix has made various advancements this year, including the announcement of Equinix Metal, partnerships with Nokia and Rakuten Mobile, investments in Singapore and Hong Kong, and a significant expansion into India.

“Companies in every sector are embracing digital transformation as a critical business priority, and we are well-positioned to help our customers scale with agility and create digital advantage,” added Mr. Meyers.

For 2020, Equinix expects to incur $20 million in integration costs related to acquisitions.

As a result of their investments, Equinix has over 386,000 physical and virtual interconnections, adding 8,500 net interconnections driven by video conferencing, streaming, enterprise cloud connectivity and work-from-home local aggregation.

“We continue to invest in our strategy, evolving our platform in response to evolving customer needs, expanding our global reach to accelerate digital delivery, committing to a more sustainable future and ensuring that our culture is widely recognised as a place that attracts, embraces, inspires and develops exceptional and diverse talent,” said Mr. Meyers.

Equinix Internet Exchange also experienced peak traffic, up 43% year-over-year, with a 7% increase quarter-over-quarter.

“We delivered another strong quarter … ahead of our expectations. Every key operating metric was positive. Interconnection activity remained healthy with net adds towards the high end of our targeted range,” said Keith Taylor, Equinix CFO.

Many of Equinix’s data centers were identified as essential businesses or critical infrastructure by local governments, with all IBX data centers remaining operational as of publication.

Looking ahead, the full impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Company’s financial condition or results of operations remains uncertain and will depend on a number of factors, including its impact on Equinix customers, partners and vendors and the impact on, and functioning of, the global financial markets, Equinix said.

“The things we were most worried about is what customers were going to go out of business, what payments we were not going to receive. It’s hard to quantify, there’s certainly some impact from COVID-19, I think I’d size it in the US$20 to US$30 million range,” said Mr. Taylor.

Mr. Taylor came to this figure by seeing success in bookings, despite some fallout from COVID-19 and making concessions for the pandemic.

“We are delighted with there we are vis a vis of what could have been when we started in Q1 and locking things down. Clearly we have done meaningfully better than we originally anticipated from the original guide. That’s because the company has been running seemingly well and customers have been paying their bills,” said Mr. Taylor.

For Q4 2020, Equinix expects revenues to range between US$1.549 and US$1.569 billion, an increase of between 2% and 3% quarter-over-quarter.

For the full year of 2020, Equinix expects between US$5.983 and US$6.003 billion in revenue, representing approximately 8% increase over 2019.

The Company’s past results may not be indicative of future performance, and historical trends may differ materially, said Equinix.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

HGC Global Communications Limited (HGC) has signed an agreement with CyberSecurity Malaysia to strengthen telecommunication cybersecurity and foster innovation.

The Memorandum of Understanding signed by the two organisations will look to enable CyberSecurity Malaysia, the national cybersecurity specialist and technical agency under the Ministry of Communications and Multimedia Malaysia, to achieve its purpose of overcoming national cybersecurity challenges and deliver greater ICT benefits to its users.

“Today, cyber security is a major concern for most industries and the vulnerabilities are rising at an alarming rate; hence IT professionals are in high demand to analyse and overcome these threats. Moreover, these attacks could have been dealt with if those businesses have better cyber resilience,” said Dato’ Ts. Dr. Haji Amirudin Bin Abdul Wahab, CyberSecurity Malaysia’s Chief Executive Officer.

The MoU will first look to benefit large to medium enterprises, the financial services industry, government and semi-government bodies.

“Organisations today are beginning to complement their cybersecurity strategies with cyber resilience. CyberSecurity Malaysia … identifies collaboration as one way to strengthen the cybersecurity ecosystem in Malaysia,” added Dr. Wahab.

The agreement between HGC and CyberSecurity Malaysia is expected to have an impact beyond Malaysia by reaching HGC’s overseas customers, as the company is a fully-fledged fixed-line operator and ICT service provider with extensive local and international network coverage, services and infrastructure.

“Cybersecurity is a paramount asset, key to HGC’s vision of a connected world. As a global telecommunications service provider, we are committed to promoting sustainable development of technological innovations, keeping cybersecurity at the centre of business solutions,” said Ravindran Mahalingam, HGC’s SVP of International Business.

HGC serves a wide range of industry verticals such as e-health, e-commerce, e-education initiatives across Asia.

Under the collaboration, the MoU will cover cybersecurity cooperation in key areas including telecom security, IoT security and threats intelligence. The exchange of information on telecommunication networks, ICT solutions and cybersecurity could further improve cyberattack readiness and prevention measures.

“More, cybersecurity is important in a smart city as the infrastructure can be vulnerable and needs to avoid any breaches. HGC is dedicated to support cybersecurity for ICT and network initiatives, ensuring a secure and reliable digital business environment,” added Mr. Mahalingam.

With its international exposure, HGC is tasked with provisioning its cybersecurity expertise, including consulting, managed security services, engineering, risk management, cloud security and advisory services. This is expected to enable CyberSecurity Malaysia to boost its range of cyber security innovation-led services, programmes, and initiatives to reduce the vulnerability of digital systems, and at the same time strengthen Malaysia’s self-reliance in cyberspace.

According to CyberSecurity Malaysia, from January and September 2020, Malaysia has recorded 8,366 cybersecurity incidents, including fraud, intrusion, and malicious code – an increase of nearly over 10% compared to 2019.

Given that the increase in the number of Internet users has a direct implication on the increase in potential threat on information systems, HGC and CyberSecurity Malaysia believe it is essential to take the necessary precautionary measures.

The Malaysia Government recently announced a US$434 million (RM1.8 billion) Malaysia Cyber Security Strategy (MCSS) to upgrade the country’s cybersecurity measures.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Facebook launched a free-to-play cloud gaming feature on its social media platform, allowing users to stream and play games like Asphalt 9: Legends and WWE SuperCard instantly with no download required.

Facebook said in a blog post: “we’re not spinning off a separate cloud gaming service,” adding that all cloud-streamed games can be played on the platform’s Gaming tab or News Feed.

The social media giant recently had 200,000 people playing their cloud-streamed games per week in limited regions.

While Facebook’s gaming feature is said to be smaller in scale than cloud gaming platforms like Stadia by Google, Amazon’s Luna, and Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, the movement towards cloud gaming is clear. 

At present, the cloud gaming platform will be available to Android and web users, Facebook said, while it was working on alternative options to launch the feature on Apple’s iOS. 

Facebook said: “Unfortunately, we’re not launching cloud games on iOS. Even with Apple’s new cloud games policy, we don’t know if launching on the App Store is a viable path. Mobile browsers may wind up being an option, but there are limitations to what we can offer on Safari. Apple treats games differently and continues to exert control over a very precious resource.”

Despite the advancements in cloud gaming, strong and reliable digital infrastructure is of critical importance to ensure low latency and lag, which is absolutely necessary for gamers who need a seamless experience. This may come in the form of 5G or edge computing technology.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

South Korea’s largest telecommunications provider, KT Corporation has announced the launch of KT Enterprise, a new brand that will provide next-generation tech services to businesses in the country.

This new brand comes as part of KT Corporation’s ambition to expand its artificial intelligence, big data and cloud services for corporate clients.

KT Corporation also revealed its plans during their Digital-X Summit 2020 to launch a new digital transformation platform for its clients in November, which will link its AI, big data and blockchain technology services together for corporate clients.

The South Korean telecom giant has also been making moves in the data center industry to strengthen its market presence in Southeast Asia. In September, the company signed an agreement with Thailand’s JTS to develop an internet data center in Thailand.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Chindata Group has successfully opened ‘Asia’s largest single data center’ in Datong, North China’s Shanxi province, on Sunday 25 October.

The data center has an IT capacity of 50 MW to support artificial intelligence-based computing.

“The opening of the data center is of great importance to boosting Datong’s energy information technology development,” said Zhang Jifu, the Secretary of the Datong Municipal Committee of the Communist Party of China.

The data center is based in Chindata’s energy data industrial base, the Taihang Mountain Energy and Information Technology Industrial Campus of the Pan-Beijing Area.

“Chindata’s energy data industrial base, where the data center is based, is a strategic project in Datong. Currently, the industrial base is taking shape. It is injecting strong impetus to the city’s development of new infrastructure, new technology, new material and new equipment,” added Mr. Zhang, first reported by China Daily.

Established in 2018, the energy data industrial base spreads across more than 1.5 million square meters of land, with seven phases of construction. The first and second phases of the project were put into operation in 2019, while the third and fourth phases will come into service by the end of 2020.

Once all seven phases are completed the base will form an integrated data aggregation together with the Chindata’s hyperscale data zones in Beijing and Hebei. The aggregation will effectively meet the digital demands from Beijing and Tianjin as well as the Xiong’an New Area in Hebei province.

During the opening ceremony, Bain Capital-backed Chindata and the Datong Government also signed an investment agreement of another data center in Chindata’s energy data industrial base to support the tremendous computing power demand in AI, automatic drive and quantum communication. The hyperscale data center provider will build the next-generation facility, spanning 333,000 square meters at an investment cost of US$2.2 billion (15 billion yuan).

“The company should seize opportunities to make full use of the integration of data center and renewable energy, to turn Datong’s advantage in energy to the advantage in strategic newly emerged industries,” added Mr. Zhang.

Recently, Chindata successfully raised US$540 million in a US initial public offering less than a month after the data center provider announced the IPO.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Image credit: Chindata

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Microsoft earned a total of US$37.2 billion in revenue in the first quarter of their fiscal year, a 12% increase compared to the previous fiscal year.

The company cites the drastic increase in demand for cloud services as the main driver behind this impressive growth.

As the global workforce shifts to remote work due to the pandemic, Microsoft’s flagship cloud services arm Azure has benefited the company greatly. Revenue in Microsoft’s Intelligent Cloud unit increased by 20% year- over- year, thanks to Azure’s revenue growth of 48%.

“The next decade of economic performance for every business will be defined by the speed of their digital transformation. We are innovating across our full modern tech stack to help our customers in every industry improve time to value, increase agility, and reduce costs,” said Satya Nadella, the Chief Executive Officer of Microsoft.

Demand for Microsoft’s cloud offerings drove a strong start to their fiscal year, with their commercial cloud revenue generating US$15.2 billion, which is up 31% year-over-year.

Revenue from Microsoft Office’s commercial products and cloud services grew by 9%, thanks to a 21% revenue uptick in its signature workplace management software Office 365. Microsoft Office 365 also hit 45.3 million consumer subscribers this year.

As jobseekers flooded onto Microsoft-owned LinkedIn for employment opportunities, revenue from LinkedIn increased 16% year on year.

According to Reuters, some of Microsoft’s success comes from a change in accounting rules for Microsoft’s servers, but the better margins were also driven by sales of lucrative software such as Dynamics 365, which competes with Salesforce.

“Microsoft’s strong earnings beat shows its market share in cloud computing is expanding while its legacy software products such as Windows and Office are in great demand during the pandemic,” said Haris Anwar, senior analyst at Investing.com.

Microsoft’s innovation continues

It has been a wildly successful year for Microsoft. The company’s relentless innovation, especially during a difficult time for many, has borne fruits in 2020. In September, the company successfully trialled an underwater data center, opening up new possibilities for more sustainability in the data center industry. 

Its popular gaming platform, Xbox’s new cloud gaming service launched in mid-September is also expected to contribute to a jump in Microsoft’s gaming content revenue in the next quarter.

On top of that, Microsoft will be launching a brand new space project with satellite operators including SpaceX to develop a cloud-driven networking and data sharing platform.

“We continue to invest against the significant opportunity ahead of us to drive long-term growth,” said Amy Hood, the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Microsoft.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Image credit: Reuters

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Dell Technologies has officially announced the launch of Project APEX, its new strategy to unify PC and IT infrastructure and deliver simplified solutions.

Project APEX will unify the company’s as-a-Service solutions and cloud services to ensure a seamless and consistent experience when clients run workloads on edge locations and public clouds.

“Project APEX will give our customers choice, simplicity and a consistent experience across PCs and IT infrastructure from one trusted partner—unmatched in the industry,” said Jeff Clarke, COO and Vice Chairman of Dell.

Dell’s new Cloud Console Platform will power Project APEX. With the Cloud Console, businesses will be able to browse and order as-a-service solutions, deploy workloads, manage multi-cloud resources, monitor costs, and add capabilities in real-time.

“We’re building upon our long history of offering on-demand technology with this initiative. Our goal is to give customers the freedom to scale resources in ways that work best for them, so they can quickly respond to changes and focus less on IT and more on their business needs,” added Mr. Clarke.

Hybrid cloud will be offered on a subscription basis for US$47 per instance per month. Dell’s Cloud Platform will be available in the United Kingdom, France and Germany with further global expansion coming soon.

“By the end of 2021, the agility and adaptability that comes with as-a-Service consumption will drive a 3x increase in demand for on-premises infrastructure delivered via flexible consumption/as-a-Service solutions,” said Rick Villars, the Group Vice President for Worldwide Research at IDC.

Sustainability, Integrated

As the tech industry places more focus on sustainability, Project APEX will look to assist its partners retire used infrastructure in an environmentally-friendly manner.

In line with the tech giant’s Progress Made Real goals, Dell will help its partners refurbish, resell, and/or recycle used IT hardware. Dell recycled 240,25 kg of IT scraps last year. 

“Our customers expect their applications and internet services to be always-on, and that requires highly reliable and available storage infrastructure. Dell Technologies retires infrastructure in an environmentally sustainable manner, saving us time and money,” said Sandra Rodel, Head of SAN Storage at Swisscom AG.

Dell Technologies Cloud Console​ is available as a public preview in the United States, with EMEA availability planned for the first quarter of 2021, while their Storage as-a-Service will be available in the US in the first half of 2021.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Weeks ago, we reported that US semiconductor chipmaker Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) had plans to purchase its rival Xilinx. Today, AMD has confirmed this move: it will acquire Xilinx for US$35 billion.

This all-stock acquisition makes it one of the biggest in the semiconductor chips industry, behind NVIDIA’s record-high $40 billion acquisition of Arm Holdings in September.

“Our acquisition of Xilinx marks the next leg in our journey to establish AMD as the industry’s high performance computing leader and partner of choice for the largest and most important technology companies in the world,” said Dr. Lisa Su, President and CEO of AMD.

AMD said the combined company will capitalise on opportunities spanning some of the industry’s most important growth segments from the data center to gaming, PCs, communications, automotive, industrial, aerospace and defense.

“The Xilinx team is one of the strongest in the industry and we are thrilled to welcome them to the AMD family. By combining our world-class engineering teams and deep domain expertise, we will create an industry leader with the vision, talent and scale to define the future of high performance computing,” added Ms. Su.

The combined team will comprise 13,000 talented engineers and over $2.7 billion of annual R&D investment.

The data center chip market is heating up

AMD’s mega-acquisition move is similar to that of NVIDIA’s purchase of ARM Holdings. This also means that both companies will officially scale up competition in the data center chips market, which is currently led by Intel.

“We are excited to join the AMD family. Our shared cultures of innovation, excellence and collaboration make this an ideal combination. Together, we will lead the new era of high performance and adaptive computing,” said Victor Peng, President and CEO of Xilinx.

As the pandemic continues to disrupt the global workforce, demand for cloud and data centres continues to surge. Semiconductor chips that are used to power data centers have thus been positively impacted, becoming an extremely lucrative industry in a ‘new normal’ society powered by tech.

“We empower our customers to deploy differentiated platforms to market faster, and with optimal efficiency and performance. Joining together with AMD will help accelerate growth in our data center business and enable us to pursue a broader customer base across more markets.” added Mr. Peng.

Mr. Peng, will join AMD as president responsible for the Xilinx business and strategic growth initiatives, effective upon closing of the transaction, which is expected to close by the end of 2021. Until then, the parties remain as separate, independent companies.

This week, Intel reported a 10% drop in its shares due consumers shifting to buy cheaper gadgets and cuts on data center spending by businesses and governments. Xilinx’s shares, on the other hand, increased by 8.55% after the announcement.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Explore the latest for cloud and data centers in Indonesia

Indonesia is an exciting emerging market in the cloud and data center industry, with advancements happening all the time.

Register now to explore what the future holds for cloud and data centers in Indonesia at our Digital Summit

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

> View all W.Media digital events

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Investment holding company, Glomac Berhad Group, is considering a venture into data center business in the near future to diversify its investment portfolio.

The talks between one local and one international organisation have been stalled due to the COVID-19 pandemic and Movement Control Order in Malaysia.

“The plan is to have the data centers in Cyberjaya, and we are looking at their specifications whether this plan can work financially,” said Managing Director and CEO of Glomac, Datuk Seri Fateh Iskandar Mohamed Mansor, during a virtual press conference after the company’s 36th Annual General Meeting.

The Malaysian Reserve reported that Glomac planned to include data centers as investment properties to diversify its income streams.

“This could be another avenue of business we are seriously looking into, but it is still in its early stages,” added Mr. Mansor.

Glomac is expected to sustain its sales and financial performance moving forward following the resumption of construction activities post-MCO, backed by unbilled sales of US$158 million (RM660 million) at the end of July 2020.

According to ResearchAndMarkets, the Malaysian data center market is forecast to cross US$800 Million, growing at an annual rate of over 8% between 2020 and 2025, driven by investments by Microsoft, Vertiv, AIMS Data Centre, G3 Global and PCCW.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Microsoft recently announced another major milestone in its “Reimagine Taiwan” initiative, including plans to establish its first cloud data center region in Taiwan.

The plan also includes significant investment in local talent and development with the goal to provide digital skilling for over 200,000 people in Taiwan by 2024.

“Technology has a critical role to play in supporting economic recovery and opportunity everywhere. Microsoft is committed to fostering local innovation to support digital transformation across the public and private sectors in Taiwan,” said Jean-Phillippe Courtois, the Executive Vice President and President for Microsoft Global Sales, Marketing and Operations.

The new investment adds to Microsoft’s more than 30-year history in Taiwan and recent investments, including the IoT Innovation Center, AI Research and Development Center, Startup Accelerator and the IoT Center of Excellence.

“Our new investment in Taiwan reflects our faith in its strong heritage of hardware and software integration. With Taiwan’s expertise in hardware manufacturing and the new datacenter region, we look forward to greater transformation, advancing what is possible with 5G, AI and IoT capabilities spanning the intelligent cloud and intelligent edge,” added Mr. Courtois.

Additionally, Microsoft is growing its Taiwan Azure Hardware Systems and Infrastructure engineering group, which will establish Microsoft Taiwan as a hub in Asia for innovation in designing and building advanced cloud software and hardware infrastructure spanning AI, IoT and edge solutions.

Commenting on the new data center, Jason Chen, Chairman and CEO of Acer, said: “Acer is excited that Microsoft is establishing a data center region in Taiwan, and we look forward to furthering our partnership to help enterprises on their digital transformation path with cloud and smart technologies, fulfilling our mission of breaking barriers between people and technology.”

This recent announcement is said to represent Microsoft’s commitment to fuel new growth that will accelerate digital transformation of Taiwan’s public and private sectors, helping customers to reimagine their future by providing access to highly secured enterprise-grade cloud services.

Ken Sun, General Manager of Microsoft Taiwan said: “I’m confident that providing access to scalable, low-latency, and secure cloud services will equip Taiwan’s public and private sectors with the latest AI and IoT technologies, while meeting the highest cybersecurity, data residency and compliance standards.

Microsoft’s ambitious new skilling plan aims to help cultivate and groom tech talent, increasing future employability opportunities for the people of Taiwan.

“Building a world-class, enterprise grade cloud marks an important step toward the digitalisation of Taiwan’s key industries. Microsoft is committed to fueling innovation and economic growth in Taiwan as it transforms into the next Asian technology hub,” added Mr. Sun.

Microsoft will deliver highly secure and scalable cloud services that will help customers to reimagine their businesses and innovate with confidence, adding Taiwan to its global-scale cloud, which now totals 66 cloud regions.

Microsoft Azure is an ever-expanding set of cloud services that offers computing, networking, databases, analytics, AI and Internet of Things services. At launch, the new region will deliver Microsoft Azure first with Microsoft 365, Dynamics 365 and Power Platform services to follow.

Microsoft intends to tailor their services to the needs of customers to store data at rest in Taiwan and over 90 compliance certifications to meet a broad range of industry and regulatory entity standards, under Taiwan’s executive branch of government, the Executive Yuan.

“With the local data center region, we hope to generate greater momentum for Taiwan’s innovation, by creating diverse services suitable for a wide range of industry scenarios, connect Taiwan to the globe, and make it a hub for the world’s innovative applications,” said Dr. Chee Ching, the President of FarEasTone Telecommunications.

As part of Microsoft’s global commitment to be carbon negative by 2030, the company will shift to 100 % supply of renewable energy for its data centers by 2025. Microsoft is also empowering its ecosystem and supply chain to be more sustainable. To support customers’ demands for high-availability and resiliency in their applications, the new region will also include Availability Zones, which are unique physical locations of data centers with independent power, network and cooling for additional tolerance to data center failures.

“Our core strategy of Big Data, Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things and world-class telecommunications networks leverages Azure’s cloud platform to create innovative solutions from the intelligent cloud to the intelligent edge,” added Dr. Chee.

Leading local companies in Taiwan across sectors have worked closely with Microsoft to create customised solutions for their customers, including: Acer, ASUS, Chunghwa Telecom, Delta Electronics, FarEasTone Telecommunications, TECO Electric & Machinery Co. Ltd, Trend Micro, Taiwan Mobile and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company.

“Chunghwa Telecom and Microsoft have closely collaborated in areas including private enterprise networks, edge computing, smart manufacturing and smart energy, and provided vertically integrated solutions and applications. Azure’s advanced cloud services, combined with Chunghwa Telecom’s telecommunications and operations expertise, will undoubtedly accelerate innovation across Taiwan’s industries and ecosystem, bringing Taiwan’s best-in-class solutions to the Asia pacific region and the world,” said Hong-Chan Ma, Senior Executive Vice President of Chunghwa Telecom.

According to a recent IDC study, in the next four years, Microsoft, its ecosystem and cloud customers together will generate more than $10 billion in new revenue and will create over 30,000 jobs, adding to the Taiwan economy.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Yotta Infrastructure is set to invest US$950 million (INR 7000 crore) in a 20-acre hyperscale data center park in Greater Noida after receiving approval from the Uttar Pradesh Government in ‘record time’.

The park will consist of six interconnected data centers, with a 30,000 rack capacity and 200 MW of power.

“We are thankful to the Uttar Pradesh Govt and Honorable Chief Minister Shri Yogi Adityanath for providing us all the required approvals in record time,” said Dr. Niranjan Hiranandani, Co-founder and Managing Director of the Hiranandani Group, which Yotta is a part of.

Construction of the first data center is slated to begin in December 2020.

“Yotta’s vision to support the Digital India initiative just received a big boost with the inclusion of our Northern India campus that will enable us to address India’s growing need for data sovereignty,” added Dr. Hiranandani.

India’s data center market is growing due to increased demand from global cloud providers and a proposed data sovereignty law by the Indian Government.

According to Darshan Hiranandani, the Group CEO of Hiranandani Group, said the National Capital Region of India contributes  over 10% to the Indian GDP and has a huge concentration of enterprises and startups who need reliable data center services.

“With our state-of-the-art campus, the NCR region will get its first hyperscale data center facility that was long due,” said Mr. Hiranandani.

Yotta Infrastructure and Hiranandani Group cooperated with the Uttar Pradesh Government on land allotment and arrangement of electricity on open access basis, which is said to go a long way in augmenting the data center infrastructure, not only in this region, but also in the country.

The NCR campus is expected to be operational with its first data center before July 2022.

“It was a very natural choice for us to look at NCR to set up our third facility after Navi Mumbai and Chennai, given the growing needs of enterprises and intentions of hyperscale cloud service providers for expanding their availability zones in this region,” said Sunil Gupta, the Co-founder and CEO of Yotta Infrastructure.

Earlier in July 2020, Yotta Infrastructure launched NM1, the world’s second largest Tier IV data center in its Navi Mumbai data center park. The company had also announced its MoU with the Tamilnadu Government for setting up a campus in Chennai at an investment of approximately US$541 million (INR 4000 crore).

Previously, Yotta Infrastructure announced its intentions to invest US$469 million (INR 3,500 crore) on three data centers in Mumbai, Delhi and Chennai over the next two years.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

As one of tech’s fastest growing regions, Southeast Asia’s data center market is becoming increasingly crucial to our digital societies, but they are also pumping out carbon emissions at a previously unimaginable scale, putting sustainability in question.

“IT makes up approximately 5% of electrical energy consumption, and is projected to grow exponentially, up to 8.5% by 2035,” said Paul Tyrer, the Vice President for Cloud and Service Provider in APAC at Schneider Electric, during a keynote at a recent W.Media event.

“While data centers only make a relatively small share of that today at around 2%, we believe that is going to increase significantly as we continue the trend with more off-premise compute happening in colocation, cloud computing, and other trends that are driving the proliferation of large data centers,” added Mr. Tyrer.

Improving data center sustainability is probably one of the only answers to slowing the damaging effects brought about by powering the facilities. 

And there’s an appetite for it. According to Schneider Electric’s recent research with 451 Research, 57% of global colocation providers surveyed believe efficiency and sustainability will be highly important competitive differentiators in three years, driven by customer requirements, long-term operational resiliency and public opinion.

So how should the data center industry practise ethical, sustainable operations whilst balancing consumers’ data demands?

A panel of professionals came together at W.Media’s Sustainable Data Centers digital event to explore how data center players in Southeast Asia adopt eco-friendly tech practices.

“Sustainability is a practice that does not conflict building with speed and scale. In fact, they actually go together. Unless we all come together with industry specialists in the sector, we will be able to realise this vision faster and more effectively,” said Manish Shangari, Executive Director of AECOM.

Adoption speed and supply chains now the main concerns in keeping up with sustainability commitments

Panelists at the event unanimously agreed with the sentiment, citing the sustainability goals set by the UN, including responsible consumption and production of energy. But Omer Wilson, Vice President of APAC Marketing at Digital Realty, pointed out that the main issue that concerns businesses in the region is the speed in which they are able to adopt sustainability practices.

“Southeast Asia is the fastest growing in terms of demand, and with the emerging markets now, this is going to continue. The likes of Indonesia are really coming up the ranks, especially around data usage and the requirements for data centers, which, if you think about it, is quite an underserved market,” said Mr. Wilson.

“That can be a little bit scary in terms of how much build is going to be needed to meet up with the demand,” he added.

So what have businesses in the region been doing to mediate this?

“We are transferring a lot of expertise and best practices from other regions into Asia. In North America, we have huge renewable energy contracts. We also build environmentally-friendly designs and styles, and these have been coming in for a while now,” explained Mr. Wilson.

Valerie Choy, Regional Sales Manager of Schneider Electric’s Energy and Sustainability Services Unit, said that many of their partners are either actively working towards carbon neutrality, or have already met said goal. The focus has shifted to the supply chain.

“We have been doing this to the extent of making demands to suppliers to demonstrate their sustainability commitments and a plan to meet them, or else face losing their business altogether,” she said.

Reconciling development and sustainability goals

With varying levels of economic maturity, Asia is a complex market for data centers to navigate, but Mr. Shangari thinks that it is possible and even easier for businesses to scale their cloud and data center operations fast whilst meeting sustainability demands, citing mega cities in Asia as examples.

Financial incentive also serves as a strong push for the data center industry to practice sustainability. 

“Sustainability is a financial decision. It is in our financial benefit to make sure that buildings run as efficiently as possible from an energy perspective,” adds Mr. Wilson.

But are there any markets that are particularly challenging to break into when it comes to convincing clients to go green?

“If you are in the Philippines, you need to comply with the Construction Code 2015. If you are in the likes of Indonesia, you have a different set of compliance codes to be concerned about,” said Joshua Au of Infrastructure Masons.

“Some mutual friends shared that in India, you need to get at least 40 permits to build a data center,” he added.

From bold ambition to bold action

But the obstacles do not mean that it is impossible to drive sustainability in the industry.

“In our industry, we specialise in doing impossible things. Compliance is a challenge, but the industry needs to come together to have a conversation with the respective policymakers,” stresses Mr. Au.

He advocates for an honest and synergetic approach not just between the industry and consumers, but also with researchers and professionals in academia. In that way, every sector is able to support and complement each other.

So in the event that data center operators do join forces to push for a more sustainability in the industry, what should come first?

Mr. Wilson views a top-down approach that bears the young audience’s demands in mind as the best way to realise corporate sustainability targets.

“When the customer drives the cloud or social media, they drive us, the colocation providers. We then innovate and provide more solutions. We all have to support each other,” said Mr. Wilson.

For Mr. Shangari, it is about prioritising one of three objectives: use of extra renewable energy, having a lesser carbon emission, or having cleaner emission systems. Regardless of which objectives that businesses choose to focus on, if there is a KPI in place on top of the sustainability commitment, the effort would go in the right direction.

“It’s an all hands on deck situation to quickly absorb the experience of others who already have those plans in place, and demonstrate try-and-tested strategies to put forward those plans and implement actions to get there.” added Ms. Choy.

> Watch Sustainable Data Centers in Southeast Asia: Expectations vs Reality hosted by Schneider Electric on demand now

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Intel stated that its profit margin had fallen over the third quarter of the year, as consumer sales decreased due to consumers buying cheaper laptops and cuts to data center spending by businesses and governments.

Chip sales are booming, but customers want lower-priced chips rather than Intel’s high-priced high-performance offerings, wearing down overall gross margins, reported Reuters.

The pandemic has given Intel a boost in the form or surging laptop sales as employees and students work from home. Sales in its PC group were US$9.8 billion, beating analyst estimates of US$9.09 billion, according to FactSet.

Despite these figures, Intel sold a higher volume of less-profitable chips in its PC business, steering operating margins down to 36% in the third quarter from 44% a year before.

Chips, and heavily beaten-down businesses and Governments bottleneck expenses on data centers, dragged down Intel’s shares to by 10% on Thursday 23 October, 2020.

Further pressures are faced, as the dominant manufacturer and distributor of processor chips for personal computers and data centers had reiterated that it had been struggling with manufacturing delays, while its next-gen chipmaking technology could be delayed by six months.

Due to a growing uncertainty in global economic recovery, Intel’s Chief Financial Officer, George Davis, said in a post-earnings call with reporters: “You’re seeing the demand shift from desktops and higher-end enterprise PCs to the entry-level consumer and education PCs. Even though the volume is good, your [average selling prices] are coming down, so that impacts your gross margins a little bit.”

According to Intel’s quarterly earnings’ report, the chipmaking tycoon had posted a net income of US$1.11 per share, while the company was anticipating its current-quarter revenue to hover around US$17.40 billion, beating an analysts’ estimate of $17.36 billion.

Mr. Davis mentioned that a similar dynamic hit the data center business, where spending by government and business customers plunged 47% and operating margins dropped from 49% to 32% after two quarters of growth. Revenue from Intel’s data-center business fell by 7% to US$5.9 billion in the reported quarter versus a forecast of US$6.21 billion, said FactSet.

While cloud computing customers and operators of 5G networks helped make up for some of the shortfall, those chips are lower priced, Davis said.

KinNgai Chan, an analyst with Summit Insights Group, reflects that ‘the main issue for Intel moving into 2021 remains gross margin pressure and further deterioration of its leadership position due to its process node roadmap delays’.

Intel is facing increased competition from NVIDIA and (reportedly) AMD in the data center chip market after making significant acquisitions of chip manufacturers.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Airtel has entered the $1 billion Indian cloud communications market with Airtel IQ. Airtel IQ has one goal: to help businesses drive deeper customer engagement through seamless and secure communication delivered on the cloud. 

Airtel IQ is a cloud communication suite that allows enterprises to easily embed multimodal communication like Voice, SMS in mobile/web applications using highly robust Airtel IQ communication API’s.

Airtel IQ provides customers a hosting telecom infrastructure by incorporating a robust set of restful HTTP APIs that allow you to activate call and SMS functionality inside your application. Developers can use protocols and technology they are already familiar with such as HTTPS. This reduces complexity and provides an efficient way to implement communication services inside the mobile and desktop applications for you.

Adarsh Nair, Chief Product Officer of Bharti Airtel said: “At Airtel, we are obsessed with solving customer problems and Airtel IQ is first amongst several game changing products that we will be bringing to the market.”

Airtel IQ is said to have a rich and deep capability in calls, IVR, SMS, location, email, and identity. Further to this, Airtel are adding workloads beyond these to address their customer needs.

“Businesses are increasingly looking to cloud-based digital platforms to engage with consumers and Airtel IQ is built to raise the bar when it comes to brands delighting consumers. So, the next time you enjoy shopping online, ordering food from your favourite restaurant or hailing a ride, remember there’s a bit of Airtel IQ in there making it happen seamlessly and safely,” added Mr. Nair.

Airtel’s portfolio includes high speed 4G/4.5G mobile broadband, Airtel Xstream Fiber that promises speeds of up to 1Gbps, converged digital TV solutions through the Airtel Xstream 4K Hybrid Box, digital payments through Airtel Payments Bank, as well as an integrated suite of services across connectivity, collaboration, cloud and security that serves over one million businesses.  

Airtel’s OTT media services include Airtel Thanks app for self-care, Airtel Xstream app for video, Wynk Music for entertainment and Airtel BlueJeans for video conferencing. In addition, Airtel has forged strategic partnerships with hundreds of companies across the world to enable the Airtel platform to deliver an array of consumer and enterprise services. 

Airtel IQ reportedly eliminates the need for multiple communication platforms for different channels. With just a slice of code, businesses could embed communication services such as voice, SMS, IVR in their applications and digital properties across desktop and mobile, all through the integrated platform.

Airtel IQ has been fully developed by Airtel’s in-house engineering teams and is natively integrated into telco grade infrastructures.

Commenting on Airtel’s latest innovation, Vivek Sunder, the Chief Operating Officer for Swiggy, said: “Seamless and secure communication between their customers, delivery partners and partner restaurants is key to their service enablement. With Airtel IQ, they have been able to deliver seamless and highly intuitive communication between all parties across their platform in a privacy contained and simplified fashion.”

Many of India’s biggest companies such as Swiggy, Justdial, Urban Company, Havells, Dr. Lal Path Labs and Rapido have signed up as customers for Airtel IQ during its beta phase.   

The Indian cloud communications market, estimated to be worth US$1 billion, based on Airtel’s internal estimates, is growing close to 20% annually. Airtel is one of India’s largest players in the B2B connectivity space, serving over one million businesses with an integrated portfolio that includes connectivity, cloud, security and collaboration and data center solutions.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Image credit: Reuters

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

SAP has scrapped its mid-term targets and will focus on the cloud market, despite double-digit in growth of earnings per share and cash flow. As a result of SAP’s transition to cloud, they aim to target more than US$26 billion in cloud revenue by 2025 in spite of COVID-19 setbacks.

SAP’s strategy is to help every business run as an intelligent enterprise – 77% of the world’s transaction revenue touches an SAP system.

In the third quarter of 2020, SAP’s current cloud backlog was up 10% year over year to US$7.79 billion, which was up 16% at constant currencies, amid continued COVID-19 effects on SAP’s cloud business. However, continued lower transactional revenues, particularly in SAP Concur, negatively impacted cloud growth by 6%. 

Cloud revenue from SAP’s SaaS/PaaS offerings, that do not belong to Intelligent Spend, and its IaaS offering grew by 26% and 24%, respectively. 

The operating cash flow for the first nine months of the year was also up 54% year-over-year to US$6 billion. Operating cash flow benefitted from reduced restructuring related payments and lower income tax payments.

With this in mind, SAP no longer anticipates a meaningful recovery in SAP Concur business travel-related revenues for the remainder of the year 2020.

SAP is therefore altering its full year 2020 outlook and is now expecting cloud revenue to drop from US$9.8 – 10.2 billion to US$9.4 – 9.6 billion, while cloud and software revenue is forecast to drop from US$27.6 – 28.3 billion to US$27.3 – 27.8 billion.

The COVID-19 crisis has opened up opportunities to accelerate for transformation. Customers are looking to move to the cloud at an accelerated speed for greater resiliency and agility.

SAP is responding to these market demands by providing the technology and expertise to help its customers migrate their existing IT environments to the cloud and transform their businesses end-to-end. SAP’s Business Technology Platform will be the foundation for all SAP applications, integration, customer and partner ecosystem extensions. There is also room for new innovations such as Industry Cloud and Business Network.

In addition, SAP plans on accelerating the modernisation of its cloud delivery, arriving at a consistent delivery infrastructure earlier than planned. As a result, SAP is set to drastically increase the efficiency and resiliency of its cloud delivery operations. 

SAP will also increase research and development investments to accelerate its customers’ transformation in the cloud and establish a prominent position in new categories like Industry Cloud. The impact of these new strategy initiatives, together with macroeconomic factors, are reflected in the SAP’s updated mid-term ambition.

“Our expedited move to the cloud will ensure we continue our path as a cloud growth company while we remain focused on cost efficiency. These actions and our resilient business model position us well to meet our new ambition targets as uncertainty recedes,” said Luka Mucic, the CFO of SAP.

The reset abandons a strategy that was made ‘once upon a pre-COVID lifetime’, said industry analyst Josh Greenbaum at EAConsult.

If the COVID-19 pandemic is taken into account, this is expected to impact the demand environment, particularly in hard hit industries, through at least the first half of 2021 pushing out the achievement of key metrics such as cloud revenue, total revenue, and operating profit, by up to two years.

The acceleration of customers’ move to the cloud and subsequent business transformations drive the new ambition’s cloud revenue target of more than US$26 billion by 2025. SAP expects shifting customers more quickly to lower-margin cloud hosting from its traditional cash-cow software licenses would ‘negatively impact the 2023 operating margin by approximately 4 to 5 percentage points relative to the previous mid-term ambition’.

Christian Klein, the CEO of SAP is confident that ‘COVID-19 has created an inflection point for their customers. The move to the cloud combined with a true business transformation has become a must for enterprises, to gain resiliency and position them to emerge stronger out of the crisis’.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Image credit: Reuters

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

More and more data center operators are moving into Malaysia to meet rising demands for faster processing speeds, according to the Malaysia Internet Exchange (MyIX).

In recent months, we have seen Microsoft, Vertiv, AIMS Data Centre, G3 Global and PCCW make advancements in the Malaysia data center market.

“More international connectivity and a robust domestic backbone would continue to attract sizeable investments into Malaysia,” said Chiew Kok Hin, the chairman of MyIX.

The trend for more data centers is due to higher local demand against the backdrop of improvements in cross-border data flow regulations, he said.

“It only makes sense for our country to continue capitalising on our strategic geographical location, ease of access and relatively lower cost of entry,” Mr. Chiew added.

More international companies are joining MyIX, including Huawei, Hong Kong’s Aofei Data International, US-based Hurricane Electric and Subspace Communications.

Malaysia’s MYNIC, Excel Commerce Solutions, NKH Solution, ICORE Technology, and AVM Cloud have also joined the Exchange, bringing the number of MyIX members up to 117 organisations.

Recently, MyIX opened the exchange for enterprises to directly peer with each other in order to keep local traffic in the country.

“Our Multi-Lateral Peering Arrangements (MLPA) support the open policy of interconnection with all MyIX members so as to improve the efficiency of routing and general connectivity of the internet,” said Mr. Chiew.

The Exchange achieves this by automating peering for open networks by providing route servers for participants to exchange routing information with multiple peers

“Although we have significantly improved the presence of local traffic in MyIX, there is still substantial local traffic from the enterprise segment that goes via international path before re-routed back to Malaysia,” said Mr. Chiew.

Mr. Chiew recently applauded Malaysia’s Ministry of Transport as ‘unsung heroes’ for enabling the country’s Internet infrastructure by making exemptions for foreign vessels to perform maintenance on subsea fibre optic cables.

“MoT’s ongoing commitment is very reassuring for foreign players investing in our country’s internet backbone, and this includes subsea cables,” said Mr. Chiew.

A new subsea cable is set to be introduced into Malaysia by OLL and NEC by the third quarter of 2022.

MyIX registered peak internet traffic of 670Gps, higher than the 588Gbps in April during the Movement Control Order introduced to reduce COVID-19 infection rates.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media


editor@w.media

With more returning to the office in Singapore after more COVID-19 restrictions were eased on Monday 28 September, the question of how IT teams can support a world of work where digital transformations have happened at a rapid speed and new digital architectures have been deployed has become an important one to ask. Jim Cavanaugh, the President of Cisco AppDynamics in Asia Pacific and Japan, examines how IT teams can adapt to new digital transformation demands and navigate their company’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the world of work forever. Teams became virtual overnight. Employees embraced collaboration tools and video conferencing technology as part of their new day-to-day. Organisations have moved huge sections of their business online much faster than projected, redefining their operations and strategies to meet evolving customer demands.

More than half-a-year into the pandemic, the transition  back to the workplace in Singapore has been set in motion. Restrictions are easing and employees are returning to the office. But this is no return to the ‘old normal’ – safety measures remain in place, working from home is still the default option, and employees must continue to do so for at least half their working hours.

A hybrid working environment looks set to stay, with flexible employees working from different locations and with more varied working patterns. For employers this means constant revisions to how they deploy IT systems and services to meet the needs of their workforce, whilst still achieving business goals. Businesses are having to rapidly update their technology applications and tools to maintain business continuity, encourage collaboration, and maintain their office team culture in a dispersed work environment. It’s clear that the work is far from over for IT teams. 

IT teams remain under pressure

The pressure on technology and the people running IT departments all over the world has never been greater than the past year. IT teams have faced a brand new set of business and technology priorities and challenges, and have learned valuable lessons that will shape digital transformation efforts in the future. 81% of global technologists said that COVID-19 created the biggest technology pressure for their organisation that they have ever experienced and 61% said they felt under more pressure at work than ever before, according to the Agents of Transformation Report 2020: COVID-19 Special Edition report by Cisco’s AppDynamics.  

Technology priorities changed within 95% of organisations surveyed in the same report during the pandemic. It has been up to technologists to deliver the infrastructure, applications and security required to maintain world-class digital experiences, both internally and externally for their organisations. 

It is positive that many of the tools and technologies that have enabled remote working have been successful. We’ve seen that people can be as productive in a remote office reality, without a drop in productivity. A global survey by employee engagement platform EngageRocket of over 20,000 respondents found that about 49% of people reported being equally productive working at home in June as they were when they worked in the office before the COVID-19 outbreak and 23% felt more productive. Organisations are clearly comfortable with remote work becoming a permanent fixture, with tech companies such as Twitter recently announcing that their employees are now allowed to work from home permanently.

The key for businesses is to stay flexible and agile, ready to continually adapt to new business and customer demands. Thankfully, IT teams seem positive in their ability to be part of the solution. According to the Agents of Transformation Report 2020, 87% of technologists regard the response to COVID-19 as an opportunity for tech professionals to show their value to the business. In fact, 80% of technologists report that the response of their IT team to the pandemic has positively changed the perception of IT within their organisation.

The Future Technologist Skillset

For technologists that found themselves spearheading their business’ response to the global pandemic certain skills have proved vital. The Agents of Transformation 2020 report identified the skills that were most necessary for technologists navigating their company’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Top of the list were collaboration, analytical thinking, and outcome-driven decision making.

A key characteristic of an ‘Agent of Transformation’ is that they take responsibility for their own success and are always developing their skills and attributes in order to continually improve, perform at a higher level and be better connected to the business. Enterprises will need forward-thinking individuals who can react to the pace of change we are seeing. 

Organisations must also do all they can to provide their technologists with the tools they need to meet digital transformation requirements. The IT response to the pandemic has, in some instances, led to increased complexity. Many organisations have taken full advantage of modern cloud infrastructures and microservices architectures. The benefits of cloud in terms of flexibility, innovation and collaboration have been clear to see. However, technologists must now navigate a more complex, distributed application architecture and configuration, with some components remaining on-premise and the rest of them in the cloud, creating a hybrid cloud architecture.

Technologists need the tools to manage these complex environments and maximise the investment. 92% of technologists report that having visibility and insight into the performance of the technology stack and its impact on customers and the business is the most important factor in becoming an Agent of Transformation during this period.

Remote Work: Agility and Applications

The impact of COVID-19 on our working lives and organisational structures will be long lasting, far beyond the easing of restrictions on how people work, travel and interact. Companies are recognising the benefits of having greater numbers of people working remotely and adopting more agile approaches to all areas of employee management, from recruitment and onboarding, to internal communications and collaboration between teams.

Digital services and applications are essential in keeping workforces productive at home and therefore it is vitally important that IT departments are able to handle surges in demand and unique pressures on their IT estate. This means having the right tools to monitor and manage the technology stack, from the user experience at the application layer, right through to the network.

There’s no return to the pre-pandemic version of “normal” for Singaporeans despite the lift in restrictions. What’s clear for all organisations, whether embracing remote working, full time or looking towards a hybrid model, is that IT teams and technologists, armed with the right tools, applications and skills, are critical for businesses to thrive in this new era of work.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Explore the latest for cloud and data centers in Singapore

Singapore has one of the most dominant tech industries in Asia, with advancements happening almost daily.

So, what can you expect from a hub market, the downstream opportunities to the edge markets, and the innovation of technology in the space of Cloud Computing, connectivity, cybersecurity and data centers?

Register now to explore what the future holds for cloud and data centers in Singapore at our Digital Summit

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

> View all W.Media digital events

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Chayora made history today with its TJ1 data center by becoming the first facility in China to be OCP Ready™ certified.

The hyperscale data center campus operator demonstrated its ability to create a highly efficient data center and meet Open Compute Project (OCP) guidelines.

“We could not be more delighted to join the OCP community and share our unique perspectives on opening such a magnificent facility in China,” Jonathan Berney, the COO of Chayora.

The data center in the Greater Beijing region of Tianjin, China, exceeded guidelines created by the OCP Data Centre Facility Project Team, which serves as a reference for data center operators and tenants who want to understand the fundamental facility requirements to deploy OCP hardware into their IT space.

“As the first OCP Ready™ facility in China, this certification confirms the absolute attention to world class design and build standards,” added Mr. Berney.

The TJ1 data center is scalable from retail colocation to hyperscale, with up to 25,000 racks and more than 300 MVA of gross power. The facility will be launched on Thursday 29 October.

“As the momentum for open hardware designs continues to grow in north Asia, having data centers that are optimised for OCP designs becomes increasingly important,” commented Steve Helvie, the Vice President of Channel Development for the Open Compute Project Foundation.

Chayora’s data center is said to offer ultra-low latency data transmission to Beijing’s Central Business District at <2ms per round trip, and has a power usage effectiveness (PUE) of ≤1.2.

“Having Chayora as our first OCP Ready™ data center in China ensures those enterprises deploying OCP solutions that they will have a strong data center operator who understands open hardware and is committed to openness, scale and efficiency,” added Mr. Helvie.

The OCP Ready™ Facility Recognition Program is one of the Open Compute Project Foundation’s newest certifications.

“An OCP Ready™ data center has been through a thorough peer review process and achieved recognition for implementing the industry’s best practices for efficiency and scale,” said Mark Dansie, a key member of the OCP DC Facilities Project Team and leader of the OCP Ready™ program.

As a result of their success, the TJ1 data center will be featured on the OCP Marketplace.

Mr. Dansie added: “These facilities provide cost and efficiency-optimised operation now and well into the future.”

Recently, Chayora announced the expansion of their executive team with former staff from Google, Microsoft, AWS and Digital Realty to continue to meet the explosive demand for data processing in the China market.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Keppel Data Centres, City Gas and City-OG Gas Energy Services have signed an agreement to explore using Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) and hydrogen to power Keppel’s Floating Data Centre Park in Singapore.

Under the Memorandum of Understanding signed today (Monday 26 October, 2020), the three organisations will jointly explore and evaluate LNG procurement strategies and energy transition to hydrogen in the longer-term.

“As industry leaders in technologies, such as the tri-generation LNG and steam methane reforming, our partners will provide insights which will enhance the design and envisaged operations at the Floating Data Centre Park to achieve optimal energy efficiency and reduction in carbon emissions,” said Wong Wai Meng, the Chief Executive Officer of Keppel Data Centres.

The three parties will also look at carbon capture, utilisation and sequestration as well as cold energy harnessing for the Floating Data Centre Park, which will be crucial for cooling the data center.

“With our expertise in gas solutions and tri-generation, we are excited to be part of this collaboration, which will allow us to understand better how our know-how can be applied to the growing data center industry,” said Gio Lee, Chief Executive Officer of City-OG Gas Energy Services.

The initiative is in line with Keppel’s Vision 2030, which prioritises sustainability in studying ways to create more energy efficient and greener data center solutions, so the burgeoning needs of the digital economy can be met in a safe, reliable and environmentally friendly manner.

“Leveraging our expertise in a comprehensive range of safe, reliable and clean gas solutions, City Gas is constantly exploring ways to further lower carbon emissions. We are thus eager to expand our green efforts in the data center sector with this MOU,” said Perry Ong, the Chief Executive Officer of City Gas.

City Gas already uses natural gas in the town gas manufacturing process with a longer-term view of using hydrogen to further minimise environmental impact.

The Floating Data Centre Park is currently in the exploration phase, and Keppel Data Centres has already signed other deals with Toll Group, Royal Vopak and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Explore the latest for cloud and data centers in Singapore

Singapore has one of the most dominant tech industries in Asia, with advancements happening almost daily.

So, what can you expect from a hub market, the downstream opportunities to the edge markets, and the innovation of technology in the space of Cloud Computing, connectivity, cybersecurity and data centers?

Register now to explore what the future holds for cloud and data centers in Singapore at our Digital Summit

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

> View all W.Media digital events

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Indonesia’s leading telecommunication service provider, Telkom Indonesia, has announced a strategic partnership with Dutch network operator Everynet BV to accelerate the rollout of Internet of Things infrastructure in the country.

Everynet will be working with Telkom Indonesia to invest, build and operate LoRaWAN network to steer digital transformation in the country. LoRaWAN is a low-power, wide-range area network that allows for internet connectivity, management and monitoring of devices and end-user applications in a specific area.

“Providing this neutral-host IoT infrastructure will be a big step forward and aligns with the government’s intent to enable smart cities with common platforms,” said I Ketut Agung Enriko, Telkom Indonesia’s Head of IoT. 

As a result of a neutral-host and open technical architecture, Indonesia’s mobile network operators, application service providers, managed service providers, and internet service providers are said to benefit from this collaboration, scaling the LoRaWAN IoT services at a lower cost and a shorter time-to-revenue turnaround.

“Our goal is to enable all IOT players to bring their own specialist focus and domain expertise to drive digital transformation on a massive scale,” added Mr. Enriko.

Everynet will work to develop the local ecosystem of IoT suppliers and systems integrators to generate sustainable growth and drive Indonesia’s local economy. 

“Over the last year, Everynet has been laying the groundwork along with our partner Telkom Indonesia to ensure full compliance with the stringent national requirements. We were among the first to achieve Kominfo approvals, and so were first to deploy pilot coverage and successful trials in Indonesia, which we undertook in Bali,” said Lawrence Latham, CEO of Everynet.

Once the IoT infrastructures are installed, the country will benefit from a range of services, including remote infrastructure monitoring, natural-disaster mitigation, healthcare response to COVID19, metering and smart grid, smart lighting, and freight shipping logistics.

“The increasing deployment of large scale LoRaWAN networks using Semtech’s LoRa devices reflects a trend toward the growing adoption of IoT globally. In addition, applications leveraging LoRaWAN deliver simple, highly efficient, flexible, and secure IoT solutions,” says Marc Pegulu, Vice President of IoT for Semtech’s Wireless and Sensing Products Group.

The network is ready now for the business community of systems integrators, service providers, developers and end-users in several cities in Indonesia.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Explore the latest for cloud and data centers in Indonesia

Indonesia is an exciting emerging market in the cloud and data center industry, with advancements happening all the time.

Register now to explore what the future holds for cloud and data centers in Indonesia at our Digital Summit

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

> View all W.Media digital events

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

Southeast Asia is forecast to be the fastest-growing region for data centers, and sustainable growth is a top priority, according to a new study by Digital Realty.

In a report titled The Future of Data Centers in the Face of Climate Change, Digital Realty and Eco-Business found that 89% of regional experts predict a significant data usage growth in the region over the next five years.

“Southeast Asia has emerged as a highly sought-after region, with Singapore accounting for an estimated 60% of the region’s total data center supply,” said Mark Smith, the Managing Director of Asia Pacific for Digital Realty.

 

 

In line with Digital Realty’s Data Gravity Index, enterprises are found to be expanding rapidly within Southeast Asia, driving demand for robust regional IT infrastructure. As a result, a number of data center providers have announced projects this year in Indonesia, Malaysia, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam, while Singapore currently has a moratorium on new data center builds.

“While Singapore’s stable, pro-business environment, low-risk geographic features and abundant connectivity options make it an attractive destination for data center players, the country needs to remain competitive in the face of rising competition,” added Mr. Smith.

According to the research, Singapore may be held back in its long-term growth as a competitive and sustainable data center market due to its sparse land, while the Southeast Asia region is impeded by its tropical climate and policy gaps.

Despite this, Indonesia and Malaysia were identified as rising stars in the data center industry and a rival to Singapore, as they offer ease of access, a lower cost of entry, and a fast-growing base of tech-savvy consumers to drive data storage needs. And for sustainable growth, both countries have an abundance of land mass for data center operations to expand, which gives them the physical capabilities to generate their own supply of renewable energy.

 

 

 

In a survey of more than 200 experts across Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia, Digital Realty found 96% of respondents indicated that COVID-19 has further intensified data demand and underscored the importance of digital technology and data centers.

“Singapore has a tremendous opportunity to fortify its regional leadership and build upon its position as a sustainable global data center hub in the post-pandemic world,” predicted Mr. Smith.

With some of the fastest-growing digital economies in the world and rapid acceleration of data services demands, it is crucial that data center providers find a way to meet these needs while also making sure each country meets their climate targets, said Jessica Cheam, the Managing Director for Eco-Business.

“It is encouraging to see that most customers in the region view sustainability as a key consideration when choosing a data center provider,” said Aaron Binkley, the Senior Director of Sustainability at Digital Realty.

However, the study revealed that 71% of respondents highlighted a lack of environmental awareness as a key challenge in making data centers more sustainable, followed by lack of investment at 65%, and a lack of collaboration from stakeholders at 61%. 

One of the biggest demands on energy in data centers is the cooling equipment, which is especially important in hot and humid climates like the ones we experience in Southeast Asia.

The report found that cooling needs represent 35%-40% of total data center energy demand, but, while more funding for research is needed, efficient technologies and processes like liquid cooling represent a significant opportunity for operators to reduce energy usage and cost.

“We believe cooling technology will be a game-changer for data centers, especially in Southeast Asia’s tropical climate,” added Mr. Binkley.

 

 

The Southeast Asia region is also witnessing promising developments in renewable energy for data centers, with solar power standing out for its sizable potential supply in places like Indonesia and Malaysia as well as Singapore, which can find ways to increase its solar supply through domestic production and imports.

The use of renewables is being driven by tech giants like Microsoft, Google, Amazon and Facebook, who have set ambitious targets to lower their carbon emissions in data centers to meet the UN Sustainable Development Goals. 

These set a positive example for the rest of the industry to follow, but to do this, the report recommends that all members of the data center ecosystem must work together to share expertise in the region and be bolder in integrating new technologies to raise the efficiency of facilities.

With digitalisation pressures and an ever-increasing reliance on stable digital infrastructures here to stay, it is important that we act now to make sure we grow sustainably for future generations to comfortably enjoy the fruits of our digital transformation labour.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media

The Prime Minister of Vietnam, Nguyen Xuan Phuc, has called on Samsung to build a new semiconductor production plant in the country.

During a meeting with Samsung Electronics Vice Chairman Lee Jae-yong on Tuesday 20 October, Prime Minister Nguyen said the plant would enable the company to have a closed production chain in Vietnam, where it already has smartphone and consumer electronics plants.

If agreed to, Prime Minister Nguyen promised Vietnam would create the best possible conditions for Samsung to invest in high-tech projects.

The Vietnam Government has also agreed to a proposal by Ho Chi Minh City to allow Samsung Electronics’ Ho Chi Minh City Complex to become an export processing company, enabling it to expand and strengthen its global competitiveness.

This isn’t the first time Prime Minister Nguyen has made this request, as last year a similar proposal was made when the two met in Seoul.

It is unclear how Mr. Lee responded, but Samsung will have a key Hanoi-based research and development facility operational by late 2022, which will create up to 3,000 engineering jobs. The R&D facility will be the first of its kind outside of South Korea, and will cost US$220 million.

Mr. Lee also thanked the Vietnam government for granting visas to over 3,000 Samsung engineers this year, despite COVID-19 restrictions.

Vietnam is Samsung’s largest smartphone production base, with half of all its phones being made in the country. It has invested over US$17 billion in Vietnam so far, making Samsung the single largest foreign investor in the country.

Vietnam’s exports of smartphones and spare parts, mostly produced by Samsung Electronics, rose 4.4% last year to US$51.38 billion, according to the General Statistics Office.

Vietnam has set ambitious targets to become a digital society by experimenting with new technologies and setting a target of having 10 big IT businesses with revenues of over US$1 billion.

Prime Minister Nguyen approved the National Digital Transformation Programme, which strives to completely renovate Government operations and stimulate a digital economy by 2030.

Got a story, opinion or more information on this article? Contact us at editor@w.media.
And sign up to the W.Media Newsletter to get the latest data center, cloud and cybersecurity updates!

Get all the latest insights at W.Media events

We have a plethora of events to whet your appetite for the latest cloud, data center and cybersecurity intel delivered by some of the top experts in the field.

> Inform your business by registering for W.Media digital events

Get involved in the conversation and connect with your peers on LinkedIn and Facebook using #WMediaEvent!

Jie Yee Ong

Tech Reporter, W.Media

editor@w.media