Gartner: Global public cloud spending to reach $332.3 billion in 2021; 23.1% YoY increase

According to Gartner, global public cloud spending is forecast to reach $332.3 billion in 2021, increasing by 23.1% from $270 billion in 2020.  Growth in cloud spending can be attributed to increased adoption in technologies such as virtualization, edge computing and containerization.

“The events of last year allowed CIOs to overcome any reluctance of moving mission critical workloads from on-premises to the cloud,” said Sid Nag, research vice president at Gartner. “Even absent the pandemic there would still be a loss of appetite for data centers.

Table 1. Worldwide Public Cloud Services End-User Spending Forecast (Millions of U.S. Dollars)

  2020 2021 2022
Cloud Business Process Services (BPaaS) 46,131 50,165 53,121
Cloud Application Infrastructure Services (PaaS) 46,335 59,451 71,525
Cloud Application Services (SaaS) 102,798 122,633 145,377
Cloud Management and Security Services 14,323 16,029 18,006
Cloud System Infrastructure Services (IaaS) 59,225 82,023 106,800
Desktop as a Service (DaaS) 1,220 2,046 2,667
Total Market 270,033 332,349 397,496

BPaaS = business process as a service; IaaS = infrastructure as a service; PaaS = platform as a service; SaaS = software as a service     Note: Totals may not add up due to rounding.

Source: Gartner (April 2021)

As organizations mobilize for a massive global effort to produce and distribute COVID-19 vaccinations, SaaS based applications that enable essential tasks such as automation and supply chain is critical. Such applications continue to demonstrate reliability in scaling vaccine management, which in turn will help CIOs further validate the ongoing shift to cloud.

“It’s important to note that the usage and adoption of cloud that served enterprises well during the ongoing crisis will not look the same in the coming years,” said Mr. Nag. “It will further evolve from serving pedestrian use cases such as infrastructure and application migration, to those that combine cloud with technologies such as artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, 5G and more.

“In other words, cloud will serve as the glue between many other technologies that CIOs want to use more of, allowing them to leapfrog into the next century as they address more complex and emerging use cases. It will be a disruptive market, to say the least.”

Driven by demand for composable applications, software-as-a-service (SaaS) will account for the largest market segment to reach $122.6 billion in 2021. Gartner cited that SaaS-based applications will be instrumental in countries’ efforts to produce and distribute COVID-19 vaccinations, in areas such as automation and supply chain. These applications will help CIOs validate the shift to cloud.Desktop-as-a-service will experience the highest growth at 67.7% to reach $2 billion, while infrastructure-as-a-service will grow by 38.5% this year to reach $82 billion. In 2022, growth in these areas is expected to slow down.
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Cloud Computing Fuels Revenues and Profits for Big 3 Cloud Companies: 

Amazon’s market-leading AWS cloud business grew revenue 32% in the first quarter, a faster pace than analysts had expected and accelerating from 28% growth in the fourth quarter.  Microsoft’s revenue has skyrocketed since it invested billions of dollars to build a massive, interconnected cloud computing platform.  Revenues for its Azure cloud offering were up 50% in the quarter. Meanwhile, revenues at Google’s Cloud business grew 46% this past quarter.  However, Google continues to be a distant third to Amazon and Microsoft in the cloud business.

All three cloud providers are making a big push into edge computing and 5G “cloud native” core networks.   That effectively makes them leaders in those new tech markets, with the traditional network providers playing a subservient role.  For example, Dish Network will build its 5G core network using the AWS cloud infrastructure and services.

These big three cloud businesses are in reality massive cloud (i.e. Internet) resident data centers with high-speed interconnections (Data Center Interconnects). There’s no reason to think growth will slow any time soon. Were they stand-alone businesses, they would be the three largest enterprise-software entities in the world.  And they design their own compute servers, making them the world’s largest global computer companies too!

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While cloud services boomed in the past year, Gartner suggests that spending on cloud might take a different note in 2021 and 2022 as enterprises shift away from infrastructure and application migration towards advanced applications integrating AI and IoT and 5G.

In the first quarter of 2021, research and analytics firm Canalys reported that global cloud services infrastructure spending grew to $41.8 billion to represent a 35% year-on-year increment and 5% quarter-on-quarter growth.

References:

https://www.gartner.com/en/newsroom/press-releases/2021-04-21-gartner-forecasts-worldwide-public-cloud-end-user-spending-to-grow-23-percent-in-2021

https://www.telecomreviewasia.com/index.php/news/industry-news/2325-global-public-cloud-spending-to-reach-332-3-billion-in-2021

Curmudgeon/Sperandeo: Technology Fab Five Biggest Winners from Covid-19 Pandemic

 

Vodafone and Google Cloud to Develop Integrated Data Platform

Vodafone and Google Cloud today announced a new, six-year strategic partnership to drive the use of reliable and secure data analytics, insights, and learnings to support the introduction of new digital products and services for Vodafone customers simultaneously worldwide.

In a significant expansion of their existing agreement, Vodafone and Google Cloud will jointly build a powerful new integrated data platform with the added capability of processing and moving huge volumes of data globally from multiple systems into the cloud.

The platform, called ‘Nucleus‘, will house a new system – ‘Dynamo‘ – which will drive data throughout Vodafone to enable it to more quickly offer its customers new, personalized products and services across multiple markets. Dynamo will allow Vodafone to tailor new connectivity services for homes and businesses through the release of smart network features, such as providing a sudden broadband speed boost.

Capable of processing around 50 terabytes of data per day, equivalent to 25,000 hours of HD film (and growing), both Nucleus and Dynamo, which are industry firsts, are being built in-house by Vodafone and Google Cloud specialist teams. Up to 1,000 employees of both companies located in Spain, the UK, and the United States are collaborating on the project.

Vodafone has already identified more than 700 use-cases to deliver new products and services quickly across Vodafone’s markets, support fact-based decision-making, reduce costs, remove duplication of data sources, and simplify and centralize operations.  The speed and ease with which Vodafone’s operating companies in multiple countries can access its data analytics, intelligence, and machine-learning capabilities will also be vastly improved.

By generating more detailed insight and data-driven analysis across the organization and with its partners, Vodafone customers around the world can have a better and more enriched experience. Some of the key benefits include:

  • Enhancing Vodafone’s mobile, fixed, and TV content and connectivity services through the instantaneous availability of highly personalized rewards, content, and applications. For example, a consumer might receive a sudden broadband speed boost based on personalized individual needs.
  • Increasing the number of smart network services in its Google Cloud footprint from eight markets to the entire Vodafone footprint. This allows Vodafone to precisely match network roll-out to consumer demand, increase capacity at critical times, and use machine learning to predict, detect, and fix issues before customers are aware of them.
  • Empowering data scientists to collaborate on key environmental and health issues in 11 countries using automated machine learning tools. Vodafone is already assisting governments and aid organisations, upon their request, with secure, anonymised, and aggregated movement data to tackle COVID-19. This partnership will further improve Vodafone’s ability to provide deeper insights, in accordance with local laws and regulations, into the spread of disease through intelligent analytics across a wider geographical area.
  • Providing a complete digital replica of many of Vodafone’s internal support functions using artificial intelligence and advanced analytics. Called a digital twin, it enables analytic models on Google Cloud to improve response times to enquiries and predict future demand. The system will also support a digital twin of Vodafone’s vast digital infrastructure worldwide.
  • In addition, Vodafone will re-platform its entire SAP environment to Google Cloud, including the migration of its core SAP workloads and key corporate SAP modules such as SAP Central Finance.

Johan Wibergh, Chief Technology Officer for Vodafone, said: “Vodafone is building a powerful foundation for a digital future. We have vast amounts of data which, when securely processed and made available across our footprint using the collective power of Vodafone and Google Cloud’s engineering expertise, will transform our services, to our customers and governments, and the societies where they live and serve.”

Thomas Kurian, CEO at Google Cloud, commented: “Telecommunications firms are increasingly differentiating their customer experiences through the use of data and analytics, and this has never been more important than during the current pandemic. We are thrilled to be selected as Vodafone’s global strategic cloud partner for analytics and SAP, and to co-innovate on new products that will accelerate the industry’s digital transformation.”

Revenues at Google’s Cloud business grew 46% this past quarter.  However, Google continues to be a distant third to Amazon and Microsoft in the cloud business.

Technical Notes:

All data generated by Vodafone in the markets in which it operates is stored and processed in the required Google Cloud facilities as per local jurisdiction requirements and in accordance with local laws and regulations. Customer permissions and Vodafone’s own rigorous security and privacy by design processes also apply.

On the back of their collaborative work, Vodafone and Google Cloud will also explore opportunities to provide consultancy services, offered either jointly or independently, to other multi-national organizations and businesses.

The platform is being built using the latest hybrid cloud technologies from Google Cloud to facilitate the rapid standardization and movement of data in both Vodafone’s physical data centers and onto Google Cloud. Dynamo will direct all of Vodafone’s worldwide data, extracting, encrypting, and anonymizing the data from source to cloud and back again, enabling intelligent data analysis and generating efficiencies and insight.

References:

https://prnmedia.prnewswire.com/news-releases/vodafone-and-google-cloud-to-develop-industry-first-global-data-platform-301281936.html

https://cloud.google.com/press-releases/2021/0503/vodafone-google-cloud (video)

 

Cisco Plus: Network as a Service includes computing and storage too

Cisco Systems is extending the concept of software-as-a-service (SaaS) technology with the introduction of Cisco Plus, which is a network-as-a-service (NaaS) offering focused on cybersecurity and hybrid cloud services. The new service offering can also provide computing-as-a-service and data-storage-as-a-service.

  • Cisco announcing plans to lead the industry with new Network-as-a-Service (NaaS) solutions to deliver simpler IT and flexible procurement for customers looking for greater speed, agility and scale
  • Cisco also reveals plans to help customers build a SASE foundation today (with Cisco SD-WAN and security) with as-a-service offer coming soon
  • Cisco Plus offers include flexible consumption for data center networking, compute and storage now, and commits to delivering the majority of its portfolio as-a-service over time

“I believe every organization would benefit from simplifying powerful technology,” said Todd Nightingale, Senior Vice President and General Manager, Enterprise Networking and Cloud, Cisco. “Network-as-a-service is a great option for businesses wanting to shift to a cloud operating model without a heavy lift. Cisco is leading the industry in its approach with Cisco Plus. Together with our partners, we intend to offer the majority of our technology portfolio in the simplest, most flexible way: cloud-driven, cloud-delivered, cloud-managed and as-a-service.”

“Network-as-a-service delivery is a great option for businesses wanting to shift to a cloud operating model that makes its easy and simple to buy and consume the necessary components to improve and grow their businesses,” said James Mobley, senior vice president and general manager of Cisco’s Network Services Business Unit.

Cisco Plus NaaS solutions will provide:

  • Seamless and secure onramps to applications and cloud providers
  • Flexible delivery models, including pay-per-use or pay-as-you-grow options
  • End-to-end visibility from the client to the application to the ISP
  • Unified policy engine to ensure the right users have access
  • Security across everything, not bolted on as another point solution
  • Real-time analytics providing AI/ML-driven insights for cost and performance tracking
  • API extensibility across the technology stack
  • Partners layering additional value and delivering their services faster

The NaaS rollout will first focus on a cloud-based solution as-a-service for secure access service edge (SASE). The Cisco SASE offer currently available enables customers to easily leverage future services with investment protection. Cisco is planning limited release NaaS solutions later this calendar year that will unify networking, security and visibility services across access, WAN and cloud domains.

While Cisco plans in the next few years to introduce what will likely be many service options under Cisco Plus, for now it is introducing two flavors. The first, Cisco Plus Hybrid Cloud, includes the company’s data-center compute, networking, and storage portfolio in addition to third-party software and storage components all controlled by the company’s Intersight cloud management package.  Customers can choose the level of services they want for planning, design and installation Mobley said.

Cisco Plus Hybrid Cloud, which will be available mid-year, offers pay-as-you-go with delivery of orders within 14 days, Mobley said.

“As enterprises recommit to their digital transformation strategies, they are increasingly looking for more cloud-like, flexible consumption models for procuring and managing their IT, cloud and network infrastructure. These “as-a-service” deployment options provide much needed flexibility and scalability, along with a simplification of network deployments and ongoing operations. Cisco’s transition to as-a-service via Cisco Plus shows the company is committed to meeting customer needs for predictable costs, cloud-like agility, first-class security, and more.

“With Cisco Plus, it’s taking NaaS and its hybrid cloud offerings to the next level by including hardware and the full portfolio into this as-a-service offer, that provides cloud-like simplicity and flexibility of consumption on one end, and on the other, it provides a rich set of intelligent operational enhancements that go a long way to deliver enhanced IT experiences and outcomes. This has also been made possible by increased embedded intelligence now available in network and IT hardware and software, coupled with advanced telemetry options in many of these platforms.”

— Rohit Mehra, Vice President of Network Infrastructure, IDC.

“With Cisco Plus, we couldn’t be more excited that Cisco is diving deeper into the as-a-service era, helping us in our transformation to deliver IT as a service to our customers. In this way, we are better equipped to help our customers simplify their IT operations, and free up resources to invest in innovation of their core business.” — Jeffrey den Oudsten, CTO Office Solutions Director, Conscia Nederland

“There’s always been a push and pull in how to operationalize and finance IT infrastructure. Cisco Plus is the matching pair to a cloud operating model. Delivering Cisco Plus across the majority of Cisco’s portfolio helps us at Insight to further deliver the transformation to a cloud operating model our clients want. With Cisco Plus, organizations can not only operate their infrastructure as a cloud, but also consume it in a similar fashion, enabling a true hybrid, multi-cloud.”  — Juan Orlandini, Chief Architect Cloud + Data Center Transformation, Insight

“At Presidio, we have seen this shift coming for a long time. Our customers are very clear: They want to consume reliable, best of breed infrastructure with consumption-based financial models. And with the launch of Cisco Plus, Presidio and Cisco in partnership are doing just that.”  — Raphael Meyerowitz, Engineering VP, Office of the CTO, Data Center, Presidio

The second Cisco Plus service, which did not have an availability timeframe, will feature the company’s secure access services edge (SASE) components, such as Cisco’s SD-WAN and cloud-based Umbrella security software.

Security-as-a-service models offer many advantages for organizations including offloading the maintenance of hundreds or thousands of firewalls and other security appliances, said Neil Anderson, senior director of network solutions at World Wide Technology, a technology and supply-chain services provider.

“With SASE, enterprises can consume that from the cloud and let someone else take care of the toil, which frees up their security team to focus on threat vectors and prevention,” he said.

While the strategy behind delivering network components as a cloud-based service has been around for a few years, it is not a widely used enterprise-customer strategy. Cisco’s entry into NaaS is likely to change that notion significantly.

“Cisco has been on this journey for a few years now—starting with providing subscription-based offers for many of its software solutions—while working on simplifying and enriching the licensing and consumption experience,” Mehra said. “Customers understand and have embraced cloud-like IT-consumption models that are typically subscription-based and provide scalability and other on-demand capabilities,” Mehra said.

 Terms such as NaaS are still largely new in an enterprise context to most IT practitioners, although they do understand that operational simplicity and flexibility will be crucial to their success in digital transformation, Mehra said.

While NaaS might be relatively new to some customers, others are already utilizing it, other experts said. For remote-access, customers are more than ready, and it’s starting to go mainstream, Anderson said.

“For connectivity to the cloud edge, it’s coming very soon, and the adoption of SASE models for security will accelerate the demand for NaaS services,” he said. “NaaS in the campus will probably take a bit longer, but we see that coming. Some customer segments, like retail, are probably ready today, while others like global financials will take longer to adopt.”

Networking is no longer just about connecting things within private networks because there is a world of networking to and between clouds to account for, Anderson said.  “For example, with private WANsI typically networked my sites to my other sites like a private data center. Now, I need to network my sites to cloud services, and I may be doing so with public-internet services,” Anderson said.

NaaS for the campus network is another use case on the horizon, he said. “To build campus networks in the past, we had access, distribution, and core layers, and the core spanned my campus and sometimes private data center. It was designed to aggregate traffic from users into my private data center,” Anderson said. “Today, much of the traffic is heading to the cloud—Office 365 is the tipping point for many organizations—so building a core network may not be necessary. I see a new architecture emerging where the goal is to tie each site, including each building of a campus, to the internet directly to connect users to cloud and enable traffic to [reach] the cloud sooner, ultimately improving the user experience.”

Naas is by no means a slam dunk, and there will be challenges for enterprises that use it. “For medium to large organizations with significant investments in existing remote, branch, campus and data-center networking network-security infrastructure, migrating to NaaS will be difficult and time consuming. Multi-vendor environments will further complicate the matter,” stated principal analyst at Doyle Research, Lee Doyle.

Widespread adoption of enterprise NaaS will occur slowly over the next five to 10 years Doyle stated. The best fits for adoption now are greenfield sites, temporary locations, and small branch offices. NaaS offerings will also be attractive to network remote, home and mobile workers who need secure, reliable application performance. Enterprise networks with the requirement to move traffic at high speeds on-site would be more difficult to deliver as a service, Doyle stated.

Key challenges, besides understanding of what NaaS will help deliver, face IT practitioners who are the potential customers as well as vendors and service providers, Mehra said.

“On the customer aspects, what we’ll need to watch will be the changing role of IT and how it can optimally consume these technologies as a service while retaining overall control of its IT environment,” Mehra said. “On the provider side, visibility across issues such as operational flexibility and simplicity will be one area to consider, while another will be the direction the industry takes on what metered-service options it makes available for its clients.”

The challenges depend on the industry and security requirements, WWT’s Anderson said. “If the organization is in a heavily regulated industry like financial, healthcare, or federal [government], one challenge will be trusting the integrated security needed,” Anderson said. “For example, there would be fewer challenges to enable everyone to connect to the internet, akin to a giant hotspot, but to adopt more of a zero-trust model, where you may need to securely isolate sessions and devices from one another, will require building trust in some integrated security technologies.”

“What Cisco is doing is very interesting because what NaaS is out there has been limited to mostly the WAN world but once you start targeting the enterprise that’s where the challenges are because customers still have to move bits and everything can’t be in the cloud,” Doyle said. “Instead of being in the first inning of a game we are really just now defining the rules of the game, so there’s a long way to go.”

References:

https://newsroom.cisco.com/press-release-content?type=webcontent&articleId=2150489?dtid=oblgzzz001087

https://www.networkworld.com/article/3613180/cisco-puts-network-as-a-service-options-on-enterprise-menu.html

https://www.zdnet.com/article/cisco-launches-cisco-plus-a-step-toward-network-as-a-service/

Key Findings from Flexera’s 2021 State of the Cloud report

Cloud computing adoption was expanding rapidly even before the COVID-19.  The urgent changes to business operations and procedure caused organization plans and adoption to increase at an even greater rate.

According to Flexera’s 2021 State of the Cloud report, organizations are rapidly progressing their journey to cloud.  The report found that public cloud spending is now a significant line item in IT budgets, especially among enterprise organizations (31%) that said they spent more than $12 million a year on public cloud services.

The survey polled 750 “cloud decision-makers and users” from organizations ranging from 100 employees to more than 10,000 employees around the world and across a cross-section of organizations. It specifically asked about services run on AWS, Microsoft Azure, GCP, VMware Cloud on AWS, IBM Public Cloud, Oracle Infrastructure Cloud, and Alibaba Cloud.

AWS continues to be the leading cloud service provider with 79% of enterprise respondents saying they use the platform and 9% saying they are “experimenting” with AWS. Microsoft’s Azure was used by 76% of respondents. 11% of respondents said they are experimenting with Azure.

Azure adoption increased among all respondents in 2020. It increased from 63% last year to 73% this year. By comparison, AWS’ year-over-year growth was just 1 percentage point to 77%.

While AWS and Azure are compete for the #1 cloud service provider, GCP saw the strongest growth among the top three, growing from 34% usage last year to 49% usage this year. Additionally, GCP and VMware Cloud on AWS reported the highest number of respondents experimenting on their platforms, which the Flexera report says could drive future cloud adoption.

The following are some of the responses of interest:

Enterprises embrace multi-cloud:

• 92 percent of enterprises have a multi-cloud strategy; 80 percent have a hybrid cloud strategy

• 49 percent silo workloads by cloud, with 45 percent integrating data between clouds

• Only 42 percent of all participating organizations use multi-cloud management tools

• Respondents use an average of 2.6 public and 2.7 private clouds

Public cloud adoption continues to accelerate:
• 36 percent of enterprises spend more than $12 million per year on public clouds
• 55 percent of enterprise workloads are expected to be in a public cloud within twelve months

• 90 percent of respondents who answered a question about COVID-19 expect cloud use to exceed plans due to the pandemic
• The top challenge in cloud migration is understanding application dependencies

Understanding cloud initiatives and metrics:
• 61 percent of organizations plan to optimize cloud costs in 2021, making it the top initiative for the fifth year in a row
• 59 percent of organizations plan to focus on cloud migration
• 76 percent of organizations use cost efficiency and savings to measure cloud progress

Organizations are taking a centralized approach to cloud:
• 77 percent of enterprises have a central cloud team or cloud center of excellence (CoE)
• 54 percent of cloud teams are responsible for governing infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS)/ platform-as-a-service (PaaS) usage and costs
• 63 percent of enterprises reported using cloud managed service providers (MSPs) to manage public cloud use

The Flexera survey found that it remains difficult to map all of the relationships across applications, hardware, and networking devices for each service, especially in a rapidly evolving environment. Just over half of respondents reported understanding application dependencies as the top cloud migration challenge.

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Selected Charts from the Flexera 2021 Cloud Report:

References:

https://info.flexera.com/CM-REPORT-State-of-the-Cloud

https://www.sdxcentral.com/articles/news/amazon-microsoft-top-enterprise-public-cloud-spend-flexera-says/2021/03/

https://techblog.comsoc.org/2021/02/11/u-s-government-multi-cloud-competition-telus-selects-google-cloud/

https://techblog.comsoc.org/2021/02/10/oracele-expands-cloud-portfolio-key-themes-for-cloud-in-2021/

https://techblog.comsoc.org/2021/03/01/ibms-cloud-satellite-service-in-generally-available-orbit/

IBM’s Cloud Satellite service in Generally Available Orbit

IBM’s Cloud Satellite service is now in generally available (GA) orbit.  The service extends the IBM Cloud control plane to run virtually anywhere, whether that be on commodity hardware, some edge device, or inside another public cloud.

IBM manages Cloud Satellite deployments, which is different than from most other software-defined hybrid cloud platforms.  It provides  an administrative control plane and as-a-service operation of IBM cloud services using a Kubernetes (K8s) cluster.

IBM explained that the GA push now makes the platform available to all customers. It allows users to run their IBM Cloud service on-premises or in edge locations managed through a single pane of glass in the public cloud.

The first two services for IBM Cloud Satellite will be Cloud Pak for Data and OpenShift as a Service.

IBM’s not alone in looking to data as one of the first services to be offered on hybrid. Amazon Outposts offers RDS for MySQL and PostgreSQL; Azure Arc data services include SQL Managed Instance and PostgreSQL Hyperscale; while Google recently added BigQuery Omni to its Anthos software-defined hybrid cloud as part of a multi-cloud and edge play.

The rationale as to why data services are so elemental to hybrid cloud is that, for many organizations or use cases, data needs to stay local for reasons ranging from latency issues to data residency requirements.   OpenShift as a service will provide a route for customers seeking to build their own private cloud K8s environments.  IBM is announcing that this will also be early on the list.

As part of this collaboration, customers will be able to:

  • Deploy applications across more than 180,000 connected enterprise locations on the Lumen network to provide a low latency experience
  • Create cloud-enabled solutions at the edge that leverage application management and orchestration via IBM Cloud Satellite
  • Build open, interoperable platforms that give customers greater deployment flexibility and more seamless access to cloud native services like AI, IoT and edge computing

IBM Cloud Satellite Boosted to GA Orbit

IBM said it has more than 65 “ecosystem partners” building services to run in the Cloud Satellite environment. Partner include Cisco, Dell Technologies, and Intel. They intend to develop cloud services which can run across the multi-cloud and premises platform services include storage, networking, and server options.

“IBM is working with clients to leverage advanced technologies like edge computing and [artificial intelligence], enabling them to digitally transform with hybrid cloud while keeping data security at the forefront,” said Howard Boville, Head of IBM Hybrid Cloud Platform, in a statement. He added that “clients can securely gain the benefits of cloud services anywhere, from the core of the data center to the farthest reaches of the network.”

IBM highlighted three partners, among them Lumen Technologies and Portworx, that are both heavily leveraging 5G to deliver PaaS services for edge computing, and F5, which is developing vertical solutions for banking institutions.

IBM noted that Lumen Technologies (formerly CenturyLink) was using the hybrid cloud platform to deliver its Edge Compute service. That capability relies on Red Hat’s OpenShift that runs within Cloud Satellite to host the applications running close to Lumen’s edge locations. Lumen touts that it has approximately 450,000 route fiber miles in its network spread across more than 60 countries.

Lumen struck a similar deal earlier this year with VMware that will see both vendors “fast-track the design, development, and delivery of edge computing and more secure, work-from-anywhere solutions.”

Does anyone remember IBM’s Satellite Business Systems (SBS) of the late 1970s?  It was a pioneer in delivering data services to businesses as a precursor of the Internet.

References:

https://www.ibm.com/cloud/satellite

https://newsroom.ibm.com/2021-03-01-IBM-Cloud-Satellite-Enables-Clients-to-Deliver-Cloud-Securely-in-Any-Environment-Including-at-the-Edge

https://developer.ibm.com/blogs/distributed-cloud-development-ibm-cloud-satellite/

https://www.zdnet.com/article/ibm-cloud-satellite-goes-ga/

https://www.sdxcentral.com/articles/news/ibm-cloud-satellite-boosted-to-ga-orbit/2021/03/

IBM Cloud Satellite: Build faster. Securely. Anywhere. Now generally available. To get started, visit: https://www.ibm.com/cloud/satellite.

For more information on how IBM is working with its ecosystem of partners, visit: www.ibm.com/cloud/blog/ibm-partner-ecosystem-and-cloud-satellite

For more information on IBM Cloud Pak for Data as a Service, visit:
https://www.ibm.com/blogs/journey-to-ai/ibm-cloud-pak-for-data-with-ibm-cloud-satellite

For more information on how IBM is helping developers build on IBM Cloud Satellite, visit:
https://developer.ibm.com/blogs/distributed-cloud-development-ibm-cloud-satellite

For more information on how IBM Cloud Satellite is supported by IBM Storage, visit: www.ibm.com/blogs/systems/improve-it-infrastructure-with-ibm-hybrid-cloud-storage-for-ibm-cloud-satellite

For more information on IBM Global Technology Services capabilities for IBM Cloud Satellite, visit: ibm.biz/PC_IaaS

To learn more about how Lumen has integrated Cloud Satellite across 180K global edge locations, visit:  https://blog.lumen.com/speeding-innovation-at-the-edge-with-lumen-technologies-and-ibm-cloud-satellite

About IBM:
For further information visit: www.ibm.com/cloud/

U.S. Government Multi-Cloud Competition; Telus selects Google Cloud

Amazon, Microsoft, and Google are competing to win a part of the U.S. federal government’s $7 billion cloud spending.  The Biden administration’s IT push is going to create opportunity for the major cloud providers.

AWS still has the lead, but Microsoft is so popular one analyst called it an ‘agency’ of the Pentagon. Google is also ramping up its cloud management tool Anthos and betting on AI for defense contracts.

The federal government has been investing in cloud computing for years — starting with Obama’s Cloud First policy in 2010 all the way to Trump’s Cloud Smart strategy in 2018. But as the pandemic has accelerated the pace of technological adoption and change, the need for cloud has become even more acute, especially for federal agencies that don’t yet have it. Biden’s proposed $1.9 trillion stimulus package included $10 billion for tech initiatives — underscoring their importance to the nation’s recovery — and signaling to government contractors that more federal dollars may be going their way. (Though the latest version of the package had much of that funding cut, lawmakers are actively seeking to add it back to future bills.)

Analysts estimate the federal government spent $6.6 billion on cloud in the 2020 fiscal year, an increase from $6.1 billion the previous year, and that number will grow.

Shawn McCarthy, research director for IDC government insights, told Insider he expected the federal government’s cloud spend to increase by 7.1% from fiscal year 2020 to 2021. Marquee contracts like the Department of Defense’s $10 billion deal with Microsoft to build the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure (JEDI) cloud have drawn even more attention to the federal cloud market, which analysts say is an opportunity for Amazon, Microsoft, and Google to flex their strength.

The government needs their expertise in cloud computing and, increasingly, their support for emerging technologies like artificial intelligence and 5G.

Of the major cloud providers, analysts said that Amazon Web Services is considered the leader in the overall cloud market, and the same holds true in the public sector. But Microsoft has caught up in the federal market, especially with wins like the JEDI cloud contract, meanwhile Google is taking a different tack — betting on multi-cloud management and AI. Here’s a closer look at how the three big clouds stack up in the federal sector. Amazon has a huge head start, but it can’t be complacent Andy Jassy AWS CEO Andy Jassy, who is set to become Amazon CEO, helped oversee the cloud unit’s rise.

Mike Blake/Reuters Analysts agreed that Amazon is the one to beat in the public sector cloud market, just as it is within the larger industry. “AWS had the biggest lead out of the gate,” McCarthy said, and it has “an extremely deep bench of third-party providers that are available via their dedicated government solutions marketplace.” Amazon landed its first major deal with the government in 2013, when it won a $600 million contract to build a custom cloud for the CIA. At the time, cloud computing was considered less secure than local servers — yet the Amazon deal set a precedent, showing that Silicon Valley’s cloud innovation could fit the federal government’s needs, and led AWS to become the first commercial cloud authorized to house all levels of classified government data. But in 2019, the CIA issued a new cloud contract worth billions, and jointly awarded the deal to AWS, Microsoft, Google, Oracle, and IBM — signaling a shift away from its previous single-cloud approach, and ending intelligence agencies’ reliance on a sole Silicon Valley cloud giant.

In a sign of things to come, Amazon lost the JEDI cloud contract to Microsoft the same year. Though JEDI’s future remains in flux because of Amazon’s ongoing legal protest, analysts said it proved Microsoft’s ascendance in the sector. Read more: As Pentagon warns it could abandon its $10 billion JEDI cloud with Microsoft, analysts say AWS could benefit.

“I think last year was kind of characterized by Microsoft catching up to Amazon,” said Chris Cornillie, a federal market analyst at Bloomberg Government.

Microsoft caught up to AWS, thanks to its cloud software Scott Guthrie Scott Guthrie, Microsoft’s executive vice president of cloud and AI, oversees Azure and was once described by an analyst as a “cloud visionary.” Stephen Lam/Getty Images Analysts also agreed that Microsoft isn’t catching up to Amazon anymore — they’re nearly neck-and-neck in the federal market now. McCarthy said Microsoft succeeded “thanks to the popularity of Microsoft 365 and Microsoft Azure.” Microsoft 365 includes Office 365, the company’s line of productivity software, while Azure is its cloud computing service that more directly competes with AWS. Amazon doesn’t have a direct competitor to Microsoft 365, and focuses instead on its core infrastructure cloud platform. Cornillie told Insider Microsoft had done a good job of “leveling the playing field” with its JEDI win and a number of smart investments: working with OpenAI, linking up with Oracle for data interoperability, and a partnership with AT&T to facilitate 5G.

Last year, it launched new Azure Government cloud capabilities and announced it had achieved the highest authorization for handling sensitive government data, finally matching AWS. Within the Pentagon, which has the largest IT budget of any federal agency, one analyst said Microsoft is so entrenched that it has “basically become an agency of the Department of Defense.”

Microsoft 365 was chosen as the department’s sole software suite in a $4.4 billion deal called the Defense Enterprise Office Solutions (DEOS) contract, first awarded in 2019 and recently fast-tracked because of the pandemic. “Microsoft has really benefited in a lot of ways from the COVID-19 pandemic response effort,” Cornillie said, citing that it was also picked for a separate Pentagon initiative which rapidly deployed Microsoft Teams in the department’s Commercial Virtual Remote environment.

Microsoft 365 offers the company a convenient way to sell Azure cloud, plus other services like consulting and maintenance as a bundle, he said. And although the scope of Microsoft’s entanglement in the aftermath of the SolarWinds cyberattacks is still unfolding, analysts said it likely won’t suffer much reputational damage within the federal government.

Alex Rossino, a senior principal research analyst at government contracting research firm Deltek, told Insider that as the government increasingly pushes its security burden onto vendors, big cloud players will actually benefit. “The large cloud providers especially have the deep pockets to be able to make sure they provide the best kind of upgraded security,” he said.

“So I think that’s a selling point for them when it comes to the federal government; they can actually use the SolarWinds example as a way to say, ‘Well, look, we can make sure that doesn’t happen.'” Google is banking on AI and multi-cloud Google Cloud CEO Thomas Kurian at Google Cloud Next 2019 Google Cloud CEO Thomas Kurian has been credited with shoring up its enterprise business, and could help its play for government contracts. Insider Intelligence Though Google is still catching up to Amazon and Microsoft, and only recently spun up a large-scale dedicated government cloud, they are “a known entity and should become competitive,” said McCarthy.

Analysts also said Google is leveraging its strength in AI, a field the government is very interested in, and pushing Anthos, its tool for managing multiple clouds, to break into the federal market. Some big hires are evidence of this play: Cornillie said Google Cloud CEO Thomas Kurian, who has been running the unit with strategies inspired by his former employer Oracle, would help build up its enterprise business, while Joshua Marcuse, who heads the global public sector team and was recruited from the Defense Innovation Board (the Pentagon advisory board that was led by former Google CEO Eric Schmidt) would help with its AI push. Marcuse previously led development of the Pentagon’s ethics AI principles, though that approach has since been criticized by the AI community and former Google AI researcher Meredith Whittaker for lacking accountability. Google’s renewed interest in working with the Defense Department comes after it dropped out of bidding for the JEDI contract in 2018, following employee protests over a controversial AI project called Project Maven. Google is hoping for a fresh start under Biden, and the Pentagon is too.

Cornillie said Google now views its AI prowess as helping open the door to new cloud contracts — taking a “if you want AI capabilities out of the box, it works best in our cloud” approach. However, its ambitions are limited by the fact that it doesn’t hold all security certifications required by the sector, he said.

Bringing in Todd Schroeder from Salesforce to lead global public sector digital strategy was another “smart move,” Cornillie said. Schroeder has emphasized multi-cloud, open platforms, and AI as the future for federal cloud, which play to Google’s strengths. In 2019, Google introduced its Anthos product, which lets customers build and manage their applications across Google Cloud, AWS, and Microsoft Azure.

Banking on multi-cloud as the future (a reasonable bet, as the Department of Homeland Security just issued a $3.4 billion multi-cloud contract), Google is hoping its cloud management tool will become indispensable.

A new $3.4 billion DHS cloud contract could kick off a fierce battle between cloud giants like Amazon and Microsoft, analysts say. There are signs its product is sticking: Google has already done some pilots with Customs and Border Protection to optimize workloads across Azure, AWS, and Salesforce, Cornillie said, and the agency is now competing a large cloud migration contract that has Anthos’s multi-cloud management function explicitly written in.

IBM, Oracle, and smaller players are not to be discounted are IBM and Oracle, analysts said. They’ve also been steadily making progress, but “for reasons of security certifications and for reasons of the maturity of their tech, they’re still looking for niche components or niche contracts,” Cornillie said. “They haven’t been able to land any really big fish yet.”

Both companies bid for the JEDI contract, and both lodged formal protests after being eliminated from the running. But they haven’t given up on the market: Oracle made its Cloud Marketplace available for government customers to run software in its cloud in January, while IBM acquired open-source cloud provider Red Hat for $34 billion in 2018 — a move analysts at the time were excited by, saying IBM could make inroads as a hybrid cloud provider.

Rossino said smaller cloud players could enter the U.S. federal government’s cloud market by providing cloud management services:

“If they have capabilities that allow for the automation of cloud management, that’s really important too,” he said. But still, it’s a strategy borne of necessity rather than creativity. “The Microsoft’s, Amazon’s, they’ve already locked up the infrastructure market. There’s almost excess capacity out there,” he added.

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Telus Selects Google Cloud in 10 year Deal:

Google Cloud on Tuesday announced a new, 10-year strategic partnership with Telus, the Canadian telecommunications company. The two companies plan on collaborating on new services and products for a handful of key industries, including healthcare, agriculture, security and connected home. Telus also plans to modernize its own IT and network with the help of the Google Cloud Platform.

It’s the latest deal to showcase Google’s efforts to cultivate more cloud business within the telecom sector. Last year, Google outlined a multi-pronged pitch to the telecommunications industry that includes industry-specific solutions like Anthos for Telecom.

Together, Google and Telus plan to develop services and products that use AI to better leverage data within specific verticals. For instance, a couple areas of focus include new collaboration solutions for healthcare providers, as well as supply chain traceability tools for the food and agriculture sector.

Meanwhile, Telus’ own wireless and wireline services will get an upgrade as part of the deal. Leveraging Anthos, Google Cloud’s managed application platform, Google will partner with Telus to deliver 5G services and Multi-Access Edge Computing (MEC). Telus also plans on using Google Cloud Contact Center AI to upgrade its customer service.

“Our strategic partnership with Google will propel our digital leadership across the communications technology, healthcare and agriculture sectors, whilst amplifying our Customers First priority, redefining how service is delivered in Canada and globally,” Telus CEO and President Darren Entwistle said in a statement.

References:

https://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-microsoft-google-public-cloud-government-2021-2  (paywall)

https://cloud.cio.gov/strategy/

https://www.zdnet.com/article/canadian-telco-telus-signs-10-year-deal-with-google-cloud/

 

Oracle expands cloud portfolio; Key themes for cloud in 2021

Oracle has expanded its hybrid cloud portfolio with Oracle Roving Edge Infrastructure, a new offering that brings core infrastructure services to the edge with Roving Edge Devices (REDs), namely ruggedized, portable and scalable server nodes. Using Oracle Roving Edge Infrastructure, organizations can run cloud workloads wherever they need them, even in remote locations. The new service is part of Oracle’s hybrid cloud portfolio.

The devices are effectively a mobile extension of a customer’s Oracle Cloud Infrastructure (OCI) environment. REDs can run as a single node or in clusters of five to 15 nodes. The hardware inside a RED device includes 40 CPUs, an Nvidia T4 GPU, 512 GB RAM and 61 TB of storage. The devices start at $160 per node per day.

With a RED device, a customer should be able to run cloud applications and workloads in the field, including machine learning inference, real-time data integration and replication, augmented analytics and query-intensive data warehouses.

A customer can order a RED from the Oracle Cloud console, provision it — adding VMs and object storage from the console — and have it shipped. Even in remote areas where connectivity is an issue, customers can use the RED to connect to local sensors and execute applications.

There are some clear use cases for the RED devices, such as in the oil and gas industry, where organizations may currently be relying on bespoke servers. And Oracle has already signed up the US military as an early customer.

The devices should also facilitate new use cases for cloud applications, Ross Brown, VP for Oracle Cloud Infrastructure, said to ZDNet. Customers, he said, “are coming to us with things like 5G-connected applications where processing on local makes a lot of sense. This notion of high-speed data collection and high-speed data capture in a remote metro area, across a city or whatnot, these become good use cases for” the RED.

While Oracle’s cloud infrastructure business still trails far behind Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and Google, it’s picking up momentum. Oracle landed some major customers in 2020, including Zoom.

The database giant plans to catch up in the cloud in part by engineering hardware purpose-built for enterprise applications to run in the cloud — RED devices are an example of that, Brown said.

Last year, Oracle expanded its hybrid cloud portfolio with Dedicated Region Cloud@Customer — a fully-managed service brings all of Oracle’s public cloud services directly to a customer data center. Its hybrid offerings also include Oracle Exadata Cloud@Customer and Oracle VMware Cloud Solution.

The software company currently has 29 Oracle Cloud regions with plans to have 36 live by the mid-2021.  They no longer talk about Sun Micro or the SPARC microprocessor that was supposed to give them a competitive edge.

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Key themes for 2021 include:

  • The COVID-19 pandemic and the move to remote work and video conferencing are accelerating moves to the cloud. Enterprises increasingly are seeing the cloud as a digital transformation engine as well as a technology that improves business continuity. As work was forced to go remote due to stay-at-home orders, tasks were largely done on cloud infrastructure. Collaboration tools such as Microsoft Teams and Google Meet became cogs in the companies’ broader cloud ecosystem. Zoom not only lands subscription revenue, but also runs on cloud providers such as AWS and Oracle.
  • Multicloud is both a selling point and an aspirational goal for enterprises. Companies are well aware of vendor lock-in and want to abstract their applications so they can be moved across clouds. The multicloud theme is being promoted among legacy vendors that have created platforms that can plug into multiple clouds — often with a heavy dose of VMware or Red Hat. (See: Multi-Cloud: Everything you need to know about the biggest trend in cloud computing and Multicloud deployments become go-to strategy as AWS, Microsoft Azure, Google Cloud grab wallet share),
  • The game is about data acquisition. The more corporate data that resides in a cloud the more sticky the customer is to the vendor. It’s no secret that cloud computing vendors are pitching enterprises on using their platforms to house data for everything from analytics to personalized experiences.
  • Artificial intelligenceanalyticsIoT, and edge computing will be differentiators among the top cloud service providers — as will serverless and managed services.
  • Every flavor of cloud vendor wants to be a management layer to manage your other clouds. Public cloud vendors such as Google Cloud Platform and AWS have offerings to manage various cloud services. Traditional enterprise vendors such as Dell and HPE do too. Which platform becomes that “single pane of glass” for cloud management will be positioned well.
  • Sales tactics that play to fear, uncertainty, and doubt will be the norm. Right around AWS re:Invent, there appeared to be a mindshare battle in the press as the big three sniped at each other across multiple industriesGoogle Cloud has been hiring executives to sell into industries and has ramped its Anthos hybrid cloud effort to close its AWS and Azure sales gap. (See: What is cloud computing? Everything you need to know)
  • There’s a sales war happening by industry. Cloud providers are going vertical to corner industries. Gartner’s Magic Quadrant report on public cloud providers noted that the “capability gap between hyperscale cloud providers has begun to narrow; however, fierce competition for enterprise workloads extends to secondary markets worldwide.” Indeed, the financials from AWS, Microsoft Azure, and Google Cloud have all been strong.

gartner-iaas-mq-sept-2020.png

 

References:

Oracle expands hybrid cloud options with Roving Edge Devices | ZDNet

 

Synergy Research: Hyperscale Operator Capex at New Record in Q3-2020

Hyperscale cloud operator capex topped $37 billion in Q3-2020, which easily set a new quarterly record for spending, according to Synergy Research Group (SRG). Total spending for the first three quarters of 2020 reached $99 billion, which was a 16% increase over the same period last year.

Synergy Research Group’s latest data found that cloud service provider capex that was specifically targeted at data centers in the first three quarters increased by 18% compared to 2019.

The top-four hyperscale spenders in the first three quarters of this year were Amazon, Google, Microsoft and Facebook. Those four easily exceeded the spending by the rest of the hyperscale operators.  The next biggest cloud spenders were Apple, Alibaba, Tencent, IBM, JD.com, Baidu, Oracle, and NTT.

SRG’s data found that capex growth was particularly strong across Amazon, Microsoft, Tencent and Alibaba while Apple’s spend dropped off sharply and Google’s also declined.

Capex Q320

Much of the hyperscale capex goes towards building, expanding and equipping huge data centers, which grew in number to 573 at the end of Q3. The hyperscale data is based on analysis of the capex and data center footprint of 20 of the world’s major cloud and internet service firms, including the largest operators in IaaS, PaaS, SaaS, search, social networking and e-commerce. In aggregate these twenty companies generated revenues of over $1.1 trillion in the first three quarters of the year, up 15% from 2019.

“As expected the hyperscale operators are having little difficulty weathering the pandemic storm. Their revenues and capex have both grown by strong double-digit amounts this year and this has flowed down to strong growth in spending on data centers, up 18% from 2019,” said John Dinsdale, a Chief Analyst at Synergy Research Group. “They generate well over 80% of their revenues from cloud, digital services and online activities, all of which have seen COVID-19 related boosts. As these companies go from strength to strength they need an ever-larger footprint of data centers to support their rapidly expanding digital activities. This is good news for companies in the data center ecosystem who can ride along in the slipstream of the hyperscale operators.”

Separately, Google Cloud announced it is set to add three new ‘regions,’ which provide faster and more reliable services in targeted locations, to its global footprint. The new regions in Chile, Germany and Saudi Arabia will take the total to 27 for Google Cloud.

About Synergy Research Group:

Synergy provides quarterly market tracking and segmentation data on IT and Cloud related markets, including vendor revenues by segment and by region. Market shares and forecasts are provided via Synergy’s uniquely designed online database tool, which enables easy access to complex data sets. Synergy’s CustomView ™ takes this research capability one step further, enabling our clients to receive on-going quantitative market research that matches their internal, executive view of the market segments they compete in.

Synergy Research Group helps marketing and strategic decision makers around the world via its syndicated market research programs and custom consulting projects. For nearly two decades, Synergy has been a trusted source for quantitative research and market intelligence. Synergy is a strategic partner of TeleGeography.

To speak to an analyst or to find out how to receive a copy of a Synergy report, please contact sales@srgresearch.com or 775-852-3330 extension 101.

References:

https://www.srgresearch.com/articles/hyperscale-operator-capex-sets-new-record-reaches-100-billion-in-first-three-quarters

China Telecom launches 5G standalone cloud native network with Tianyi Cloud

China Telecom claims it has launched what it says is the world’s largest 5G standalone (SA) network.  Executives announced the start of commercial 5G SA operations during a company virtual conference last week and said their 5G SA network is currently supported by 30 devices, with 100 expected by year-end.

China Telecom’s 5G SA end-to-end capability testing with Tencent and Huawei was completed in September.  Earlier in the week, China Telecom said it will offer 5G SA services to over 300 cities in China at a press event held with Qualcomm at Guangzhou, China.

Like all the other telcos on the path to 5G SA (only T-Mobile US has deployed it), China Telecom’s is said to be 5G SA is a cloud native network called the “Tianyi Cloud.”  Company leaders said it’s 5G SA cloud network can guarantee “five-nines reliability,” secure network slicing and latency of below 5ms.  In particular:

With the popularization of cloud computing, hybrid multi-cloud has become the new normal for cloud migration. It is just necessary to realize high-speed network interconnection and unified management between multi- clouds. The full-stack hybrid cloud launched by Tianyi Cloud realizes the same technical architecture of the underlying cloud platform and has no cloud capabilities. It extends and covers the deployment of three scenarios: edge, private cloud, and industry cloud. At the same time, it provides first-line multi-cloud capabilities, a dedicated line connects multiple mainstream public cloud service providers at the same time, and high-speed interconnection between public and private clouds can also be realized. In addition, it is worth mentioning that Tianyi Cloud’s full-stack hybrid cloud has been adapted to national production and production at the chip, hardware, and operating system levels, and has the ability to provide national production and service services.

The new generation of cloud-native database developed by Tianyi Cloud completely independently developed and technically tackled key problems. It successfully realized the de-IOE of China Telecom’s core IT system database. Telecom users and billion-level terminal equipment access. Through continuous upgrading and evolution, Tianyi Cloud’s new generation of cloud-native database has reached financial-level data security and high reliability, and has continuously broken through the limits of scale and performance, while being compatible with a complete database ecological chain, so as to meet customers’ diverse data service needs.

Also, China Telecom officially launched the “Cloud Terminal” plan at the event. Tianyi Cloud, as the base of the cloud terminal strategy, has independently created a cloud computer through computing in the cloud, data in the cloud, application in the cloud, security in the cloud, and imagination in the end mode. And cloud mobile phone products.

President and COO Li Zhengmao said the arrival of the 5G era provided the opportunity and the technical ability for the integration of cloud and the network.

 

In terms of 5G cloud integration, Hu Zhiqiang said:

“In the 5G era, cloud-network integration has entered a new realm. Cloud-network integration is the goal that Tianyi Cloud pursues.” On the one hand, Tianyi Cloud launched an intelligent edge video cloud to break through the bottleneck of ultra-high-definition real-time encoding technology. At the same time, it has real-time scheduling capabilities of millions of video streams. On the other hand, 5G is a cloud-based network. Tianyi Cloud provides 99.999% reliability guarantee and exclusive slice data security, achieving a comprehensive TCO reduction of more than 90%, and a delay of less than 5ms.”

A white paper presented at last week’s event describes China Telecom’s cloud-network integration as driven by open sharing, open network capabilities, multi-network access 5G and SD-WAN support.  The China Telecom paper said the company was a hybrid multi-cloud strategy, integrating Alibaba Cloud, Tencent Cloud, Huawei Cloud, AWS, Azure and others into its aggregation platform.

In conclusion, Hu Zhiqiang said: “China Telecom Tianyi Cloud will continue to strengthen technological innovation, strengthen open cooperation, and accelerate the construction of a digital China and a smart society, and make greater contributions with partners.”

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References:

http://www.c114.com.cn/news/117/a1143514.html

https://www.lightreading.com/asia/china-telecom-gets-cracking-on-5g-standalone/d/d-id/765464?

China says it has deployed 700,000 5G base stations this year; Huawei’s forecast

IBM Telco Cloud has 35+ Partners to Help Virtualize Carrier Networks

“IBM Cloud® for Telecommunications provides the first high trust, unified hybrid architecture to address the fundamental transformation challenges facing telecommunications operators today.”

“We are excited to launch the IBM Cloud for Telecommunications – an open, hybrid cloud architecture designed to help telecommunications providers address the specific challenges of the highly-regulated industry: accelerating business transformation, enhancing digital client engagement and improving agility as they modernize their enterprise applications and infrastructure to unlock the power of 5G and edge,” IBM’s Howard Boville wrote in a blog post.

IBM is expanding its presence in the telecom market with a new ecosystem of 35+ partners to help communication service providers virtualize their networks. Companies such as Nokia, Samsung, Juniper Networks and Intel have agreed to help operators take advantage of the new IBM Cloud Satellite platform based on Red Hat OpenShift and deploy the IBM Cloud for Telecommunications services in the cloud, on premises or at the edge.

According to a recent IBV study, 60% of Communications Service Provider (CSP) leaders surveyed agree that they must virtualize their entire network across edge locations, but only half of them are prepared to virtualize in a cloud-native environment.  Built on IBM Cloud Satellite, currently in beta, and leveraging Red Hat OpenShift, clients can deploy IBM Cloud services anywhere: on the cloud, on premises or at the edge, while addressing industry-specific requirements and data protection.

The IBM Telco Cloud platform integrates and extends IBM Edge Application Manager and IBM Telco Network Cloud Manager to help reduce network-related infrastructure costs, increase automation, speed deployment of next gen services, and deliver new consumer and enterprise value. The holistic hybrid cloud offering will be complemented by our ecosystem partners’ software and technology, and enable mission critical workloads to be managed consistently from the network core to the edge to position telecom providers to extract more value from their data while they drive innovation for their customers.

Ecosystems fuel platforms, and because the IBM Cloud for Telecommunications is built on an open architecture, a large ecosystem of partners can enhance it with their own solutions in addition to providing services for it – and this is an important distinction. In order for clients to get our best technology with the most scale and flexibility at the start, we’ve built the IBM Cloud for Telecommunications using Red Hat OpenShift, and this strategy positions partners as the engine to drive a multitude of possibilities for clients.

The partners spans numerous categories, including network equipment providers, independent software vendors, software-as-a-service providers and hardware partners. Partners include Cisco, Adva, Enghouse, Dell, Equinix, Palo Alto Networks, Spirent, Altiostar and Affirmed Networks.

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“We are happy to team up with IBM to develop 5G solutions at the telecom edge, with Red Hat OpenShift. We believe that our service provider customers will benefit greatly from having an additional choice to quickly and efficiently deploy private 5G networks,” said Jane Rygaard, Head of Edge Cloud, Nokia. “The transition to 5G will be a key step for industries to deliver on their digital transformation plans. Having multiple options of cloud-based solutions will help our industry build this path forward.”

“Samsung is committed to helping enterprises tackle the unique challenges of today’s market by utilizing the latest mobile innovations and advanced network solutions,” said KC Choi, EVP and Head of Global Mobile B2B Team, Mobile Communications Business, Samsung Electronics. “We are excited to work with IBM and Red Hat to develop new user experiences for business based on transformative technologies like 5G, IoT and AI to help drive efficiency and streamline operations.”

“Cisco is excited to bring our industry leading compute, security, and Service Provider solutions to the IBM Cloud for Telecommunications,” said Keith Dyer, VP for IBM Strategic Alliance.  “We are delighted to expand our 20+ year partnership with IBM and bring the power of our joint solutions to our mutual customers.”

IBM says their partner ecosystem will provide customers with a wide range of ways to leverage the platform to enable them to deliver next generation 5G and Edge services, deploy and manage new cloud capabilities, and enrich relationships through AI-driven engagement. Those committing to join our growing ecosystem are listed below alongside descriptions about how they are helping customers today, or how we expect to collaborate on IBM Cloud for Telecommunications:

  • ADVA Optical Networking SE is contributing low latency 5G access and transport solutions, optical backbones, Network Function Virtualization (NFV), sync and timing, and disaggregated cell site gateways.
  • Affirmed Networks, Inc. enables operators to transform the economics of deploying and scaling mobile networks with its complete portfolio of open, cloud-native, 5G solutions.
  • Altiostar will provide 4G and 5G open virtualized RAN (Open vRAN) software that supports open interfaces and virtualizes the radio access baseband functions to build a disaggregated multi-vendor, web-scale, cloud-based mobile network.
  • Altran, Part of Capgemini, provides 5G solutions (vRAN, Core, Transport, Edge platform & marketplace), advanced Edge applications for industries and deep 5G System Integration & Network Engineering expertise.
  • Assima delivers powerful applications training at scale, leveraging its patented cloning technology to create immersive learner experiences.
  • Cisco is providing security, compute and Service Provider solutions.
  • Dell Technologies. An essential technology company in the data era, Dell Technologies is enabling Telecom network operators to extend their capabilities, moving beyond today’s connectivity to offer new enterprise services that will ignite broad industry innovations and create new revenue streams.
  • Dubber’s Voice Intelligence Cloud plans to integrate and be interoperable with IBM Cloud for Telecommunications, to help enable providers to deliver next generation Unified Call Recording and Voice AI Services on one cloud platform.
  • Enghouse Networks. Through IBM Cloud, Enghouse Networks offers Telecommunications service providers the ability to Plan, Design, Engineer, Provision, Operate, Monitor, Protect and simplify network complexity in a vendor-agnostic, hybrid cloud network environment.
  • Equinix, Inc. plans to host the IBM Cloud for Telecommunications solution on its globally distributed automated bare metal platform.
  • F5 Networks Inc. contributes traffic management, security for layers 2-7 and Kubernetes ingress control along with other virtual infrastructure solutions to enhance and support application services in the telco network cloud.
  • Hewlett Packard Enterprise delivers a leading, comprehensive portfolio of cloud-enabled software, carrier-grade services, and open, secure infrastructure offerings to accelerate innovation for telco cloud and edge solutions.
  • Intel brings a broad ecosystem, enabling new use cases and usage models from the edge to the cloud. Emphasizing an open-based and innovative approach helps to accelerate deployments that are built on Intel technologies with performance and security in mind.
  • Juniper Networks Inc. Contrail is an end-to-end software-based network architecture delivering secure, consistent policy to applications regardless of their location and the physical underlay.
  • Kaloom offers a fully programmable and automated cloud networking solution that is disrupting how edge and data center networks are built, managed and operated.
  • Lenovo’s purpose-built edge servers and storage along with Lenovo’s infrastructure automation software (LOC-A) have been validated with IBM edge application manager to provide easy to consume edge infrastructure.
  • Linux Foundation Networking (LFN) facilitates collaboration and operational excellence across open source networking projects
  • MATRIXX Software provides a highly performant network application for charging and monetization of network resources.
  • Mavenir helps wireless service providers with comprehensive end to end software applications that transforms their networks to run on the cloud.
  • Metaswitch, a Microsoft company, provides cloud native IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) network functions that help enable the deployment of highly scalable rich communication services on Red Hat OpenShift.
  • Movius provides mobile-unified communication software that enables frontline employees to securely communicate with their clients across compliant digital voice and messaging channels.
  • NetApp, Inc. helps customers simplify the adoption and readiness of 5G by providing advanced data services to enable hybrid cloud environments that extend to the Edge, and by integrating these data services with container orchestration platforms such as OpenShift and IBM Cloud Pak solutions.
  • NETSCOUT Systems provides visibility of digital services to prevent or resolve performance and security problems regardless of the technologies involved. We call it Visibility without Borders.
  • Nokia and IBM plan to deploy a fully functioning cloud-based 5G network on the IBM Cloud infrastructure, designed to help service providers to quickly deploy and deliver private 5G solutions to their Enterprise customers
  • Nuance Communications, Inc.’s enterprise solutions power over 31 billion intelligent customer interactions annually with cloud-native, AI-powered customer engagement technology to deliver industry-best digital, voice, and biometric security innovations.
  • O-RAN ALLIANCE. As a member of the O-RAN ALLIANCE, IBM Cloud for Telecommunication will help to transform the radio access networks towards open, intelligent, virtualized and fully interoperable RAN.
  • Palo Alto Networks, Inc. for Zero Trust 5G Security.
  • Portworx by Pure Storage will provide a platform of complementary data services for data rich applications running on OpenShift on IBM Satellite, including high availability, data protection, data security, multi-cloud mobility and automated capacity management required to run enterprise applications in production.
  • Red Hat will help enable the IBM Cloud for Telecommunication Ecosystem partners to run their solutions on Red Hat OpenShift and Red Hat OpenStack Platform.
  • Robin.io’s cloud-native solution for Telco provides end-to-end automation for the deployment, scaling, and lifecycle management of any data- or network-intensive applications – all the way from RAN, Core, Edge, and OSS/BSS on Kubernetes.
  • Samsung, IBM, and Red Hat are collaborating to bring AI-driven solutions for clients transforming to Industry 4.0 and beyond by leveraging the power of secure 5G devices, cloud-native 5G networks, and advanced edge computing platforms.
  • SevOne, a Turbonomic Company, delivers network performance management solutions with modern monitoring and analytics.
  • Sinefa plans to provide Digital Experience Monitoring for remote workers and SD-WAN by leveraging the IBM Telco Cloud.
  • Spirent delivers automated test and assurance solutions to accelerate the design, development and deployment of 5G, cloud and virtualized networks.
  • THALES Cloud Licensing and Protection helps organizations protect their most sensitive data and software, secure the cloud and achieve compliance through advanced encryption, access management and software licensing solutions.
  • TM Forum will be working with IBM Cloud for Telecommunication to help unlock the possibilities of 5G by enabling the industry to build self-sustaining networks
  • Travelping accelerates the provision of mobile 2G to 5G Networks, the turnkey solutions to the Telecommunications, Automotive, IoT, Manufacturing, Energy, Financial Services, and Hospitality businesses.
  • Turbonomic Application Resource Management (ARM) helps automatically assure applications get the resources they need to perform, no matter where they run or how they are architected.
  • Zerto will integrate with IBM Cloud Satellite as an embedded solution providing data protection, disaster recovery and mobility solutions.
  • Wipro will launch a solution suite built with IBM Edge Application Manager to help clients leverage 5G and Edge for enterprise use cases.
  • HCL’s IBM Ecosystem Unit will help clients, including those in regulated industries such as telecommunications, to develop digital and cloud-native solutions with IBM Cloud Paks.

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References:

https://newsroom.ibm.com/Introducing-IBM-Cloud-for-Telecommunications-with-35-Partners-Committed-to-Join-IBMs-Ecosystem-and-Help-Drive-Business-Transformation

https://www.ibm.com/industries/telecommunications/network-automation?_ga=2.192742383.490851429.1604597907-2126463123.1604597907

https://www.telecompaper.com/news/ibm-signs-up-partners-for-telco-hybrid-cloud-platform–1360709