Cloud Agility Should Be Key For Businesses In APAC

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Priyanka Bhattacharya

It’s been a while that the technology companies have been urging the businesses to move into the cloud. The transition is happening as more and more companies have understood the benefits of adopting cloud technology.
According to a report by Gartner, the the worldwide public cloud services market is projected to grow 16.5 percent in 2016 to total $204 billion, up from $175 billion in 2015. Sid Nag, research director at Gartner. “This strong growth continues reflect a shift away from legacy IT services to cloud-based services, due to increased trend of organizations pursuing a digital business strategy.” The growth comes from the fact that more and more businesses are adopting cloud system infrastructure as a service (IaaS) to make their companies future ready. It’s not just system infrastructure, companies have also started adopting applications services on cloud. “The market for public cloud services is continuing to demonstrate high rates of growth across all markets and Gartner expects this to continue through 2017,” added Nag.

These two services will drive the growth of cloud in the globally and also in the region. In fact a recent that Oracle did on the cloud services showed that businesses across APAC are highly aware of cloud services, and are also looking at systems that not only help in deploying the technology, but are agile enough to help the organisation adopt newer applications and services.

In the “Oracle Cloud Agility” study and revealed that businesses across Asia Pacific (APAC) are showing strong signs of agility in some areas and clearly recognise the business benefits of agility. These companies understand that it is important to be able to adjust quickly to new business opportunities or to iterate new products and services quickly.

“The speed with which many Asian countries are adapting to digital technologies like mobile is clearly acknowledged. However, in today’s global economy, there is no time for these organisations to be complacent and rest on their laurels. What this research shows is that many companies are not yet harnessing the power of PaaS solutions to further boost agility levels, and so stay ahead of the digital curve,” says Chris Chelliah, Group Vice President & Chief Architect, Core Technology & Cloud, APAC, Oracle.

The reason is that most companies are still grappling with getting their cloud infrastructure up and are looking at ways to use cloud systems to best benefit. But this does not mean that organisations are not aware of the need to be agile even as they set up their cloud system. According to the Oracle study 85% of the respondents believe in the importance of agility, stating that the ability to rapidly develop, test, and launch new business applications is either important or critically important to the success of their business. “Businesses clearly know agility holds the key to their success, but there is an awareness gap around exactly how this agility can be realised through the right technology investments,” says Robert Shimp, Group Vice President, Oracle.

In order to be an agile business today, the companies need to look at technology set that is flexible and scalable without adding to the overhead costs. A platform that can expand capacity, develop and deploy new applications almost realtime, and extend customer base. This is where Platform as a Service (PaaS) on cloud comes into play. “Today, PaaS can enable businesses to build new applications quickly – in as little as two weeks – allowing them to launch new internal and customer-facing applications rapidly. This capability allows organizations to react almost immediately to market conditions and get their products and services to customers ahead of the competition,” explains Shimp.
However, Oracle’s research also highlights that in APAC businesses still lack a clear view of how PaaS can help improve their business agility. Only 26 percent of respondents state that they fully understand what PaaS is. “For those that say they do understand PaaS, the top two benefits were stated as: savings on the cost of internal IT infrastructure, and savings on the cost of application development,” shares Chelliah.

In fact Japan’s leading social networking service and smartphone gaming provider mixi is one such organisation that understands the need for an agile cloud set up. It has decided to use hybrid cloud infrastructure to eliminate critical operational bottlenecks. It is working with Juniper Networks to implement the data centre solution. With a blend of Juniper Networks’ Switches and Routers, mixi will be able to seamlessly and dynamically move workloads between in-house and outsourced cloud data centers, improving customer experience and boosting developer productivity.

“The biggest advantage of the Juniper Networks solution is that it enables us to provision cloud service delivery environments without complex network configuration. This is a major benefit in terms of ease of deployment and man-hours to both staff members responsible for services and to IT managers like myself,” explains Junpei Yoshino, senior network engineer, XFLAG STUDIO, mixi. mixi had formed XFLAG STUDIO to provide a dedicated focus on gaming and video content development for its entertainment division.

This division needed to adopt this agile cloud set up to meet its dynamic business needs. “mixi operates in an incredibly vibrant space, which can be a challenge to ensure a flexible operating environment to keep up with changes in service demand. Our MPLS/VFR solution makes it much easier for mixi to juggle workloads between their own data centers and cloud service providers, enabling agility and adaptation to new trends,” Tomohiro Furuya, country manager, Japan, Juniper Networks.

While, there are few still in the region like mixi decide to deploy hardware and solutions that will help them be agile, Oracle Study shows that even now 52 percent of businesses in APAC feel that they have an IT infrastructure capable of responding to these competitive threats. In addition, 60 percent of businesses stated that they can develop, test, and deploy new business applications for use on mobile devices within six months. Oracle’s Shimp feels that despite having an understanding of the need for business agility most organisations are still lagging in using a flexible service like PaaS. “PaaS offerings, such as the Oracle Cloud Platform, have the ability to deliver unprecedented levels of business agility. Yes, the cost savings delivered by PaaS are important, but of greater importance is its ability to help businesses reduce application development timeframes and more easily tailor and integrate third-party Software as a Service apps into their business, allowing them to react better to customer demand. The key now is to demonstrate to businesses just how easy it is to integrate this critical cloud platform into their IT architectures,” says Shimp.

Author Bio:

Priyanka is the Consulting Editor with HPC Asia. A prolific writer with around 18 years of journalistic experience in various fields of Information Technology. Started her career with Dataquest, one of the leading technology business magazines in India, and has covered every aspect of information technology industry. At HPC Asia Priyanka is your go-to person if you want latest applications or technology featured.

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