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Business Technology Roundtable

Updated: 2018-03-08T08:01:43.897-08:00


The good thing about ERP software


Do you remember when you started to run your business? I am sure back then the condition was not like today. There were not so many things that you need to handle. But now, there are a lot of things that you need to handle if you want to make sure that your company can run even faster and better than before. Now, handling a lot of things at once will take you a lot of time and money and I am sure that spending a lot of money in handling a lot of things will make your profits lowered. Thus, if you want to manage and handle a lot of things at once, you might need to think about buying ERP software. What is it? 

ERP software is actually sort of like a management software system meaning that using this kind of system software, you will be able to find out what kind of things that happen in your company and you will be able to decide what kind of action that you need to take. With this kind of software, you do not need to hire more people in handling one problem. If you are not familiar with the software, you can just hire one person who are experienced in handling this kind of software.



We can get ub04 claim forms from UB-04 Software right away. If we are looking for the most reliable and best form filler software products, purchasing from UB-04 Software will be the best decision. All of the products are paired up with very affordable prices. Sometimes, it is quite troublesome and difficult to deal with claim filling for our business. Hence, we need the right form filler software products to help us enhancing the efficiency and practicality for your business. Therefore, UB-04 Software offers software products with 30 day money-back guarantee.
The guarantee is indeed very tempting. More so, the guarantee also includes upgrading at cost. When you have problems with the software product, you can contact UB-04 Software right away. In one case, when your computer crashed, you can send an email to UB-04 Software regarding to your problem. Do not forget to provide all information based on the original order. In less than twenty four hours, you will receive a reply that consists of a solution for your problem. Furthermore, if you want co backup your claims, you only need copy the claim folder to a portable device or media such as CD-R or USB stick for backup.

The easy way to compare different offers of life insurance


Insurance becomes one of the crucial things to be possessed by many people. This is because we cannot make an exact prediction about our future or about what is going to happen in the next second. Therefore, we will need a good preparation in case we experience unexpected things in our life. It is believed that life insurance quotes can be a good preparation for us, especially when we are in a bad condition. Insurance can be the alternative help of financial problem when bad things happen to us or our family. Unfortunately, not all insurance can be a great alternative. Thus, we must be very careful in choosing one, especially if we have lack information about the insurance.
Recently, there is an easy way to help you choose good insurance for you and your beloved people. Of course, in order to find the good or the great offer of insurance, you should compare two or more insurance providers and the offers as well. By comparing them, you will eventually find their difference in terms of coverage, price, the policy, the quotes, and the rate. Those factors should be considered when you want to choose or apply insurance. Now, you can compare different providers through one directory site of life insurance.

Inspiring Stories from Successful Executive Job Hunters


At least, try to listen to some people, that is to say some successful people in this matter, when you are trying to look for quite unsolicited, or probably even rare, executive job right now. Then again, there is nothing wrong to read some successful stories which may inspire your own success, right? Carefully notify how these people could finally get into their best current positions under certain big company; those very same positions you yourself are always dreaming of holding. Of course, most of these people were having the same background with what you are right now: regular job seeker.

But what makes these people outstanding and extraordinary is the very place they were looking for their executive jobs. None of this place can be said as matching those standard or regular job searching firms and or sites. Instead, these successful people had been looking their jobs in one of the best executive search firms which could give you some direct offer to the top executive positions under some companies. And it is this very special place that you need to confirm from every one of those inspiring testimonies.

Find out how these used to be regular job hunters suddenly become the best top executives of the top companies in all of sudden. They are talented people to say the least, yes. But, you are sure that you have the same, probably even better, talents compared to these people. Yet, if these people could find their way to the top executive positions, then what stops you from achieving the same (and thus even better!) successes compared to these people then? What you need to do is to find the secret ways these people had walked through to achieve such high ranked positions, right? The question is, what is there really is no secret at all, for your path is equally laid bare by this best executive job firm?(image)

Market Insights on the Pending Business Tablet Invasion


Here's the scenario, you're a busy executive working away from your office and you just want to quickly research something on the Web. You turn on the company-provided notebook computer and you wait the standard 3-6 minute delay, before you can actually use it.The corporate IT department has numerous mandatory processes that must load first -- such as virus protection, data backup, system and app software updates, etc. -- on a typical Windows system. That's often dozens of processes running at start-up, and some will consume 100 percent of the available processing power.That automated cycle can temporarily incapacitate a notebook PC. Don't bother attempting to load a web browser while this PC start-up sequence is in motion. What's the alternative? If you have a media tablet, simply use it instead and you're on the Web in a matter of seconds.Mobile Workers and Their Virtual WorkspaceIs your company prepared for the pending business tablet invasion that will likely raise the bar of expectations for corporate mobile computing? Ready or not, this trend is already in motion. Cisco announced findings from a global survey of IT managers' perceptions about tablet form-factor mobile devices in the enterprise.Cisco commissioned Redshift Research to perform a market study to assess attitudes, fears and hopes for media tablets in the workplace from a survey of more than 1500 IT managers and executives in the U.S., Canada, UK, France, Germany and Spain. While it's still considered a nascent market, this year we'll surely see an increase in the adoption of business-oriented tablet computing.Key findings from the market study include:Media Tablet DemandTablets vs. smartphones: which win? Globally, IT departments report employees place one tablet request for every three smartphone requests today.Which countries lead? Of the countries surveyed, the US and France are tied for tops -- each report a tablet is requested by 21% of the workforce. Senior executives are most likely to be issued a tablet in the US (38%) and least likely to be issued one in the UK (27 percent).Who's most excited? Spain tops the list, with 90% of IT managers believing the tablet will become more popular in the next two years."Uber-connected sales guys". Tablets are significantly more prevalent among salespeople in Germany (31%) than in all other countries (21% on average).IT Manager Fears And WantsTops in security concerns? The U.S., the country with the most experience managing tablets, also ranks #1 on the "security issue": 75% of US IT managers said new rules must be established around security and device usage.What about app access? Nearly half (48%) of all IT managers surveyed agree that access to company applications should be restricted for all employees. Canada and UK were the top countries in wanting to see restricted access on tablet form-factor devices (55% and 56 %, respectively).Custom apps? IT managers universally agree that custom tablet applications would benefit their business.Top "want list" features? Globally, three-quarters of IT managers indicated email and document sharing are "must haves". About half agreed or strongly agreed that these are desirable: video conferencing, IM, access to company databases and seamless synchronization with other business devices.Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) Turning a blind eye to BYOD. Globally, 48% said their company would never authorize employees to bring their own devices to work, yet 57% agreed that some employees use personal devices without consent.51% of the respondents reported the number of employees bringing their own devices to work is on the rise.Using personal devices without consent was highest in the US (64%) and lowest in Germany (49%).Access to company servers was highlighted as a "huge problem" of the "bring your own device" to work phenomena as was lost/stolen devices (64% globally).Globally, 44% say that handling BYOD issues diverts IT attention from other important projects."Mobile [...]

Cisco CloudVerse: a Comprehensive Cloud Framework


Multinational company CEOs are one of the most vocal advocates of the managed cloud services phenomenon. Many have been through the painful process of watching helplessly as their CIO championed the deployment of monolithic ERP and CRM systems -- only to discover that these huge enterprise software projects failed to live up to their promise.Meanwhile, purposeful line-of-business executives have successfully utilized software-as-a-service (SaaS), with their CEO's support, to break free from the legacy IT platforms and thereby give their employees the business technology (BT) productivity tools that they had hoped for -- or that the power-users demanded.Forward-looking vendors and prescient BT service providers are now leading the transition to the next wave of productivity-enhancing and cost-reducing platforms. Next year, we'll likely witness increased market activity, as the next chapter of this story unfolds.In anticipation, Cisco has pro-actively presented its cloud strategic plan and tactical roadmap to both eager channel partners and savvy enterprise customers.Cisco CloudVerse is a framework that combines the foundational elements needed to enable organizations to build, manage and connect public, private and hybrid clouds.Cisco CloudVerse combines these key cloud elements -- Unified Data Center, Cloud Intelligent Network, and Cloud Applications and Services -- enabling businesses to realize all of the benefits of clouds: improved agility, better economics, enhanced security and a dynamic, assured experience.The Cisco Cloud Index, issued last week, forecasts how dramatically clouds are transforming business IT and consumer services. The study predicts that over 50 percent of computing workloads in data centers will be cloud-based by 2014, and that global cloud traffic will grow over 12 times by 2015, to 1.6 zettabytes per year -- the equivalent of over four days of business-class video for every person on earth.The insightful study suggests that the explosive growth in clouds requires advanced capabilities that allow the data center and network to work together -- to support end-to-end cloud application delivery.The All-Inclusive Approach to Cloud EnablementToday, most cloud technologies exist in silos, preventing an efficient, integrated management approach. By integrating the three foundational cloud elements -- the Cisco Unified Data Center with the Cisco Intelligent Network to enable Cloud Applications and Services -- CloudVerse delivers a business-class cloud experience within the cloud, between clouds, and beyond the cloud to the end user.A large number of enterprises, service providers, and governments have announced that they are adopting Cisco CloudVerse as the foundation of their cloud strategies, including ACS, a Xerox Company; Fujitsu; NWN; LinkedIn; Orange Business Services; Qualcomm; Silicon Valley Bank; Telecom Italia; Telefónica S.A.; Telstra; and Terremark, a Verizon Company. Today over 70 percent of leading cloud providers are using Cisco CloudVerse on their journey to the cloud."We're moving to a world where our business customers want to experience services anywhere, anytime on any device. Cisco CloudVerse is architected to help deliver on the promise of cloud by unifying compute, storage and network resources that can be securely and rapidly re-purposed and managed on-demand to meet the needs of different customers or applications. These capabilities are fundamental to the cloud and the Cisco Cloud Intelligent Network is purpose-built to help deliver the security, scalability and flexibility we need," said Kerry Bailey, Terremark, a Verizon Company.The Three Core Elements of CloudVerse:Unified Data Center changes the economics of cloud infrastructure by providing a fabric-based platform automating the "as-a-service" model across physical and virtual environments, and designed to scale with business demands by flexibly allocating resources within and[...]

Exploring the Trends in Global Business Communications


Today, most important executive relationships are globally distributed, but many business leaders still say that they want more collaboration in person. Particularly during activities such as brainstorming for new ideas, managing a specific crisis or making presentations. This is among the key findings from a new Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) survey.While the primary function of meetings is to build relationships with customers, some 89 percent of EIU survey respondents say communications where the parties can see and respond to each other benefit internal business functions such as employee coaching and training as well as communications with partners and customers.An additional 43 percent of respondents use meetings to discuss and resolve major issues with customers such as a service or product failure or dissatisfaction with the partnership. Motivations for expanding these meetings also include contract renewals, brainstorming sessions and being introduced to other clients or customers within the organization.This EIU survey, sponsored by Cisco, explores the challenges of global enterprise collaboration and the perceived value of different types of business communications -- including telephone, instant messaging, email and conferencing.Survey respondents were also asked their views on what business processes can be most impacted through in-person interaction as well as on potential productivity gains through these efforts.The 862 global senior executives surveyed identified a number of key trends in business communications. These insightful findings include:Face time is a priority -- When it comes to different stakeholders, business leaders attach greater importance to in-person meetings with customers than with colleagues, partners or suppliers. More than half (54%) of respondents to an Economist Intelligence Unit survey said they see meetings with customers as having the greatest impact on their business. This need for face time relates to how most respondents (56%) ranked the most important aspect of business collaboration: determining audience engagement and focus.Email is getting in the way -- Business leaders in all categories cite email as the primary tool used in collaborating with colleagues, partners and customers (as much as 66% for senior managers) with the telephone identified as the second most-used business communication tool (25%). However, neither text nor voice alone was cited as the best option in communicating critical information in a global business. Motivations for more meetings differ regionally -- Asked to pick their strongest motivation for meetings with colleagues outside of their own office, respondents from Asia-Pacific and Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) are most interested in resolving a problem quickly. However, U.S. business leaders are motivated more by cost reductions in meetings with colleagues. Non-U.S. respondents are also more interested in generating better long-term relationships during their meetings with partners and customers.Industry dictates motivations as well -- In meeting with business partners or suppliers, respondents in the consumer goods industry are most likely to meet face to face to give or receive direction, while business leaders in energy/transportation, technology and services are most likely to meet to generate better long-term relationships. Respondents in other industries are most likely to meet with partners to be motivated or inspired.To supplement the survey, the EIU hosted a roundtable discussion with two industry leaders, Joan Parsons, head of U.S. banking for Silicon Valley Bank, and Morten Hansen, a management professor at the University of California Berkeley School of Information and co-author of the book, Great by Choice, about their perspectives on business communications.An analysis of the findings will be included as part of a EIU video webcast on Apri[...]

Five Megatrends are Driving the Personal Cloud Era


If you believe that you've had to learn more about the safe online operation and ongoing management of your PC than you ever wanted to know, then you'll be pleased to discover that there's relief on the horizon. According to the latest market study by Gartner, the reign of the personal computer is coming to an apparent close. By 2014, the personal cloud will replace the personal computer -- and this transition will likely include greater use of media tablets, chromebooks or other similar devices.Gartner analysts said the personal cloud will become the foundation for a new era that will provide users with an increased level of flexibility with the devices they use for daily activities -- leveraging the strengths of each device, ultimately enabling new levels of user satisfaction and productivity.However, Garner says that it will require enterprise IT leaders and their staff to fundamentally rethink how they deliver applications and services to their end-users.Seeking New Fundamental Ways to Achieve Goals"Major trends in client computing have shifted the market away from a focus on personal computers to a broader device perspective that includes smartphones, tablets and other consumer devices," said Steve Kleynhans, research vice president at Gartner.He says that emerging cloud computing services will become the glue that connects the various digital devices that people will choose to use during the different aspects of their daily life."Many call this era the post-PC era, but it isn't really about being after the PC, but rather about a new style of personal computing that frees individuals to use computing in fundamentally new ways to improve multiple aspects of their work and personal lives," said Kleynhans.Transition is Defined by a Series of MegatrendsSeveral driving forces are combining to create this new era. Gartner believes that these "megatrends" have roots that extend back through the past decade, but are aligning in a new way:1. Consumerization -- Gartner has discussed the consumerization of IT for the better part of a decade, and has seen the impact of it across various aspects of the corporate IT world. However, much of this has simply been a precursor to the major wave that is starting to take hold across all aspects of information technology as several key factors come together:Users are more technologically savvy and have very different expectations of technology.The Internet and social media have empowered and emboldened users.The rise of powerful, affordable mobile devices changes the equation for users.Users have become innovators.Through the democratization of technology, users of all types and status within organizations can now have similar technology available to them.2. Virtualization -- it has improved flexibility and increased the options for how IT organizations can implement client environments. Virtualization has, to some extent, freed applications from the peculiarities of individual devices, operating systems or even processor architectures. Virtualization provides a way to move the legacy of applications and processes developed in the PC era forward into the new emerging world. This provides low-power devices access to much-greater processing power, thus expanding their utility and increasing the reach of processor-intensive applications.3. Software App-ification -- When the way that applications are designed, delivered and consumed by users changes, it has a dramatic impact on all other aspects of the market. These changes will have a profound impact on how applications are written and managed in corporate environments. They also raise the prospect of greater cross-platform portability as small user experience (UX) apps are used to adjust a server- or cloud-resident application to the unique characteristics of a specific device or scenario. One application can now be exposed in multiple ways and used i[...]

Why Big Data Applications Adoption is Accelerating


Big Data applications have gained new momentum in the marketplace, as the benefits of working with larger and larger data sets enables analysts to spot key business-related trends. International Data Corporation (IDC) released a worldwide forecast of Big Data opportunities, noting that the market is expected to grow from $3.2 billion in 2010 to $16.9 billion in 2015.This represents a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 40 percent -- or about 7 times that of the overall Information and Communications Technology (ICT) market."The Big Data market is expanding rapidly as large IT companies and start-ups vie for customers and market share," said Dan Vesset, program vice president, Business Analytics Solutions at IDC.IDC believes that for business technology buyers, opportunities exist to use Big Data solutions to improve operational efficiency and to drive innovation. Use cases are already present across industries and geographic regions. "There are also Big Data opportunities for both large IT vendors and start ups," Vesset continued. "Major IT vendors are offering both database solutions and configurations supporting Big Data by evolving their own products as well as by acquisition. At the same time, more than half a billion dollars in venture capital has been invested in new Big Data technology."Findings from the latest IDC market study include:While the five-year CAGR for the worldwide market is expected to be nearly 40 percent, the growth of individual segments varies from 27.3 percent for servers and 34.2 percent for software to 61.4 percent for storage.The growth in appliances, cloud services, and outsourcing deals for Big Data technology will likely mean that over time end users will pay increasingly less attention to technology capabilities and will focus instead on the business value arguments. System performance, availability, security, and manageability will all matter greatly. However, how they are achieved will be less of a point for differentiation among vendors.Today there is a shortage of trained Big Data technology experts, in addition to a shortage of analytics experts. This labor supply constraint will act as an inhibitor of adoption and use of Big Data technologies, and it will also encourage vendors to deliver Big Data technologies as cloud-based solutions. "While software and services make up the bulk of the market opportunity through 2015, infrastructure technology for Big Data deployments is expected to grow slightly faster at 44 percent CAGR. Storage, in particular, shows the strongest growth opportunity, growing at 61.4 percent CAGR through 2015," said Benjamin S. Woo, program vice president, Storage Systems at IDC.The significant growth rate in revenue is underscored by the large number of new open source projects that drive infrastructure investments.Focus on Big Data Deployment MethodologyIDC methodology for sizing the Big Data technology and services market includes evaluation of current and expected deployments that follow one of the following three scenarios:Deployments where the data collected is over 100 terabytes (TB). IDC is using data collected, not stored, to account for the use of in-memory technology where data may not be stored on a disk.Deployments of ultra-high-speed messaging technology for real-time, streaming data capture and monitoring. This scenario represents Big Data in motion as opposed to Big Data at rest.Deployments where the data sets may not be very large today, but are growing very rapidly at a rate of 60 percent or more annually. Additionally, IDC requires that in each of these three scenarios, the technology is deployed on scale-out infrastructure and deployments that include either two or more data types or data sources or those that include high-speed data sources such as click-stream tracking or monitoring of machine-generated data.[...]

Videoconferencing Apps will Grow Rapidly in Latin America


There's little doubt about the continued adoption of videoconferencing and telepresence applications over the past few years. Clearly, growth has been fueled by the increasing popularity of video communications among multinational companies around the world -- particularly with mobile video chat applications that utilize new handheld devices.According to IDC's latest market assessment, the videoconferencing and telepresence market will continue to be one of the fastest growing networking markets for the foreseeable future."Growth has been spurred on by more well-defined video use cases among organizations across a range of vertical market segments, including healthcare, higher education, financial services, legal, law enforcement, manufacturing, and retail," said Rich Costello, senior analyst, Enterprise Communications Infrastructure, at IDC.Other industry analysts are equally enthusiastic about the market outlook, as more enterprise users find new ways to connect and collaborate with internal and external stakeholders via traditional video meeting rooms and other more flexible video endpoints.Enterprise Video Communications Market ResultsInfonetics Research released excerpts from its fourth quarter (4Q11) "Enterprise Telepresence and Video Conferencing Equipment" report, which analyzes markets and vendors by region."Sales of telepresence and videoconferencing equipment surged in the past two years, with growth accelerating in 2011 as video took off on enterprise IP PBX systems" said Matthias Machowinski, directing analyst for enterprise networks and video at Infonetics Research.The video conferencing market is being fueled by a confluence of factors, including the proliferation of video-capable equipment, demographic and communication trends that favor video, and industry use cases -- such as tele-learning and tele-medicine.Most importantly, the video collaboration market is being driven by increasing demand across a growing number of industry verticals that use the technology today.The Infonetics market study highlights include:The global enterprise video conferencing and telepresence market jumped 15 percent to $882 million between the third and fourth quarters of 2011, setting a record high for quarterly revenue.For the full year 2011, sales of videoconferencing and telepresence equipment are up 34 percent to $2.99 billion.Infonetics expects a cumulative $22 billion to be spent by enterprises on videoconferencing and telepresence hardware and software from 2012 to 2016.PBX-based systems had the strongest performance for the year, growing 80 percent, as they offer a cost-effective way to enjoy multi-modal communication using existing infrastructure.Market leader Cisco shows no signs of slowing down: its 4Q11 telepresence and videoconferencing revenue jumped 25 percent sequentially and market share is up 3 points to 52.5 percent.Dedicated multi-purpose room video systems made up over half the enterprise videoconferencing equipment market in 2011 and will continue to be the biggest revenue-generator among enterprise video solutions.Sales of videoconferencing infrastructure and endpoints are strong in all major world regions, but the standout region is the Caribbean and Latin America (CALA), which saw sales nearly double in 2011.[...]

Demand for More Open, Flexible Workplace Environment


According to a new market study by Cisco, a majority (60%) of IT decision makers from North European countries believe the ability to work remotely leads to increased productivity -- and it is no longer necessary to be confined to an office to be productive.Although these IT decision makers believe technology (such as business tablets) allows them to be more mobile and flexible, more than half (56%) of those surveyed -- led by those in Norway and The Netherlands -- work one or more extra hours per day as a result of the ability to work remotely.In Northern Europe, there is a growing need for remote access to the company network, social media access in the workplace and for the freedom to use personal devices for business purposes -- also known as "Bring Your Own Device" or BYOD.This trend can have a significant impact on the IT policies of organizations and among end users who are employed by companies with IT policies -- as the study also found that nearly half (47%) indicate their IT policy could use improvement or updating.That's the primary conclusions from an online survey held by Cisco in five countries: Belgium, Denmark, Norway, Sweden and The Netherlands. The results of this North European survey complement and confirm the findings of last year's Cisco Connected World Technology Report -- an international research into the demands, behaviour and work lifestyles of the next generation of workers.In addition, the survey found that when faced with the choice between "a higher salary and no remote access" versus a "lower salary position that offers remote access," end users are split, with one out of every two respondents (53%) opting for a lower salary, because they find work flexibility more important.With little differentiation across the countries, more than 6 out of 10 (65%) end users expect to have remote access to the network in the future.Demand for Mobile Enterprise ConnectivityLooking at the use of mobile devices, end users from Northern European countries tend to use more than one device during the typical workday: more than 8 in 10 (82%) end users indicate they use at least one device at work that is not company-issued.More than half (51%) of the surveyed IT decision makers even indicate that up to 50% of their company's mobile workers use a smartphone as their primary communication device.Overall, most businesses in the surveyed countries have at least taken some steps to prepare for a "mobile and distributed" workforce. Still, 1 in 5 IT decision makers (21%) indicate that their company is as yet completely unprepared. The highest percentage of unprepared businesses is reported in Norway (26%).In The Netherlands, 14% of decision makers indicate that their company is totally unprepared. In each country, roughly one-third (36%) indicate they are actively working towards enabling a mobile, distributed workforce, especially in the Netherlands (45%).Surprisingly, although Norway reports the largest percentage of completely unprepared companies, it also has the highest proportion of companies that already have state-of-the-art IT support for a "mobile and distributed" workforce (34%), together with Denmark (31%). In that respect, Netherlands (14%) and Belgium (12%) trail the pack.Access to Social Media Networking ResourcesFew end users (less than 1 in 5, 19%) report that access to social media type websites and applications is restricted at the workplace. Likewise, about 6 in 10 IT decision makers (59%) -- particularly those in Denmark -- feel that access to social media sites and applications are important for the work-life balance, or staying competitive with other businesses that use them."Our Workforce Survey in Northern Europe confirms that employees really want an open and flexible workplace environment. The survey indicates that IT de[...]

How Government Agencies will Adopt Cloud Services


While most commentary about managed cloud services tend to focus on the advances in commercial enterprise applications, government agencies are also making noteworthy progress. In particular, the advent of regional community cloud hubs is a phenomenon that's worthy of further exploration.According to their latest market study and related report, IDC Government Insights believes regional cloud hubs will significantly change the way state and local governments procure online computing services.These regional cloud hubs, defined as one government agency offering computing and storage services to other government agencies, have proven successful in the State of Michigan and State of Utah. In addition, the IDC's research provides a framework for building similar regional cloud solutions.According to Shawn McCarthy, research analyst, IDC Government Insights, "We believe that cloud hubs will see rapid growth, since the first multi-agency efforts have already shown a positive return on investment and solid service levels for cloud solutions subscribers."Cloud computing is rapidly changing the way government organizations consume computing resources. This comes at a time when virtualized servers and efforts towards application standardization have merged many government solutions.IDC says that as solutions merge, less data center space is needed. In fact, by the end of 2012 close to 40 percent of federal data centers will be shuttered. Many state governments are following a similar path, often combing multiple data centers into one or two large statewide operations. Remaining data centers often serve as a shared computing and storage resource for multiple departments.Why State Government is Leading the Way While any level of government can, in theory, offer services to any other government office, state-level governments are often most qualified to serve as regional hosts -- offering government-to-government services to other state agencies or to local municipal government entities.Local governments are already looking for trusted cloud providers -- and for ways to significantly reduce their growing IT costs. Through these cooperative arrangements, the government sites are able to leverage private cloud services including software as a service, infrastructure as a service, online storage, and security as a service, among others.Being able to purchase services through high volume state contracts can give local governments a substantial pricing edge. In addition, moving to a shared service environment also helps local governments conform to broader data standards and gain access to streamlined reporting tools that can be hosted right on the shared system. "In general, the larger government operations that already manage complex IT systems will evolve as the most likely regional hosts," said McCarthy. "Smaller government agencies may choose to get out of most IT hosting and management operations, as long as they can find reliable, affordable and privately hosted solutions through the cloud."Business Model for Regional Cloud Hubs According to IDC, these managed cloud solutions often require zero to moderate capital expenditures and are developed in-house or are commercially developed private clouds -- dedicated to government use and designed to meet specific government standards.As a result, this evolution has the potential to trigger the following game-changing consequences:For the host facility, it can turn a government agency cost center into a revenue center. By selling cloud solutions to other government organizations, host agencies can offset their own IT costs.Local governments can buy cheaper cloud solutions than they might find on their own and they may be able to reduce capital expenditures and overhead costs.Cloud services will[...]

Virgin Media Deploys Online Talent Networking Solution


Market leading companies are embracing enterprise talent networking practices -- to gain a competitive advantage within their industry. While Online collaboration tools have been readily available for some time, few IT managers proactively combine them into a cohesive strategy to advance their organization's productivity.That being said, it's been the tech-savvy forward-thinking executives that have led the cause to date -- enabling their organization to join the ranks of the early-adopters, and paving the way for others to follow.Cisco announced that Virgin Media, the UK's top entertainment and digital communications company, is deploying the powerful combination of Cisco Quad, Cisco WebEx and Cisco Unified Communications to its eager employee base.The solutions are part of the Virgin Media progressive "Flexible Working Initiative" that will enable thousands of employees to collaborate and work remotely -- utilizing video calls and shared documents, all easily accessible via notebook PCs, business tablets and mobile smartphones.Sharing Tacit Knowledge Across the EnterpriseCisco Quad will become a virtual knowledge bank that helps support online communities of practice, bringing together talent with common skills and interests. The platform enables the sharing of files or videos with co-workers across projects and workstreams -- offering instant WebEx conferencing sessions or instant messaging chat sessions -- all possible via the browser-based solution.Quad allows users to quickly find resources or skills, prioritize work and team activities more easily. This platform will incorporate real-time decision making within WebEx conferencing sessions, through communities, activity feeds and watch lists -- all accessible via any browser or through mobile apps.Finding and Connecting the Unique Talent AssetsQuad essentially allows Virgin Media employees to discover and participate in discussions with relevant internal groups that may have been previously unknown to them. This new capability will support their vision for a truly collaborative and flexible working environment."The ability of social media to actively engage audiences is proven, and we're making the most of Cisco's collaboration software to bring new ways of working to Virgin Media," said Elisa Nardi, chief people and services officer at Virgin Media.Virgin Media will soon roll out the solution to its managers and staff that are working across teams and on company-wide projects.Highlights of the deployment include:Collaboration applications will offer greater flexibility to co-work from a variety of Virgin Media office locations and from participating employee homes.The rich media capabilities extended through WebEx high-definition video help engage workers with a more face-to-face online experience.Cisco WebEx can help shorten the time to make key business decisions -- just in time -- via quick and easy video chat conversations.Cisco Quad can providing rapid access to information and people through its enterprise search capability -- which helps employees find relevant subject matter experts, content and active communities.[...]

Managed Cloud Service Provider Deployment Plans


 As more multinational business executives and IT managers consider embracing managed cloud service offerings, many are wondering how the service provider landscape is evolving -- and where providers plan to differentiate their capabilities.Much of the initial market insight focused on the key emerging trends, but now we're starting to see more detailed analysis.A new market study by Infonetics Research details operator plans for managed cloud services -- including their strategies and approaches to offering services, how services will be delivered now and in the future, and top applications of each type of cloud service including: Software as a Service (SaaS), Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS), and Platform as a Service (PaaS).Their latest worldwide study resulted in the report entitled "Cloud Service Strategies: Global Service Provider Survey," where Infonetics analysts interviewed 20 incumbent telco, competitive, data center operators, and cable operators that offer cloud services -- now, or they plan to by 2013.Investing in New Service Delivery Platforms"Service providers around the world have embraced the cloud concept in earnest and are heavily investing in new services and service delivery platforms based on their particular areas of expertise. Internet content providers are leading with SaaS, data center and co-location operators are adding IaaS to their product portfolios and investing in additional infrastructure facilities, and traditional telcos are building on their existing networks and adding a range of services," said Sam Barnett, Infonetics Research's directing analyst for data center and cloud.Highlights from the Cloud Service Survey Include:70 percent of respondent operators are investing in cloud services in anticipation of demand.The top operator strategies for offering cloud services are bundling cloud services with network connectivity services and offering cloud services over Ethernet or IP VPN services.Many of the smaller data center providers participating in Infonetics' survey plan to keep their business uncomplicated by moving from simple collocation support offerings to IaaS via the addition of computer and storage hardware, rather than getting into the complexities of offering OS software platforms.95 percent of respondent operators offer IaaS now.More sophisticated offerings like platform as a service, or PaaS (formed by the addition of server operating systems such as Windows, Linux, and Unix) and software as a service, or SaaS (such as e-mail and security services offered by telcos and ICPs like Google) are currently offered by fewer operators, but will grow significantly by 2013.All the Infonetics survey respondents are knowledgeable purchase decision-makers at service providers in EMEA (Europe, Middle East, Africa), Asia Pacific, and North America that together represent 20 percent of the world's telecom carrier revenue and 21 percent of the world's telecommunications service provider capital expenditure (capex).[...]

Tablet Use in Business to Gain Momentum in 2012


The early-adopter trials have begun, the commercial apps are being developed -- it's now a given, purpose-built tablets will be used in more mainstream business settings during 2012. Besides, executives and IT managers at multinational companies will likely witness this phenomenon first, particularly in the more advanced markets.According to the latest market study by International Data Corporation (IDC), media tablet shipments in EMEA reached more than 12 million units in the first three quarters of 2011 -- growing to 20 million units by the end of the year. Although business purchases currently represent less than 10 percent of the entire tablet market, the near-term opportunity for growth from business use is believed to be significant -- including online collaboration applications.Functionality such as a touch screen user-interface, portability, secure LAN connectivity and more business apps for vertical industry needs, are all factors that demonstrate the potential value in commercial settings.Introducing Media Tablets into the EnterpriseIDC recently conducted a study across businesses in Western Europe to understand the perceptions of tablet adoption, intention to purchase, applications for specific business needs, preference for features, and acquisition strategies.The key takeaways from the IDC study include:Adoption Trend: More than 48 percent of businesses have either already evaluated and are keen to introduce tablets or purchased a few, and many verticals pointed to interest in purchasing tablets by the first and second half of 2012. With evident uptake among the IT services, professional services industry, other sectors such as transport and storage, utilities and distribution are showing strong interest.Perception of Adoption: More than 22 percent of businesses think that the present generation of tablets defined by Apple iPad, are more suitable to their needs -- for example, meter reading, inventory management -- rather than their present equipment, such as traditional tablet devices or vertical application devices.App Usage in Business: Applications and usage of tablets in businesses vary depending on the industry. Mainstream business use for tablets are as presentation tools during customer meetings and to remotely check emails and calendars. But tablets are suited for several key vertical applications such as:Equipment maintenance, meter-reading (water, gas, electricity), proof-of-service in the field service category.Asset and inventory management, telematics and direct store delivery in the storage and logistics, travel, and distribution verticals. Tablet User Preference: While iOS and Android receive a strong response rate, more than 30 percent of respondents would consider a Windows OS-based tablet. While some businesses are price-sensitive, others would pay up to 50 percent above the standard price to have the most suitable tablet. Features vary depending on the business use-case; whether for the choice of screen size, or ruggedized features:Transport and storage and distribution sectors prefer to have barcode scanners, SD card readers, and cameras.Finance sectors prefer features such as credit card readers, signature capture, and HDD with encryption.Deployment and Acquisition Strategy: Most businesses favor partnering directly with OEMs and traditional resellers with few verticals interested in partnering with ISVs. Virtualization and cloud-based solutions are the top preferred technologies considered to support tablet devices.IDC believes that tablets now are a credible client device option, and in some cases they better fulfill the needs which are only partially met by traditional devices. They say that while some compa[...]

Five Predictions for Managed Cloud Services in 2012


The proof-positive business impact from managed cloud services deployment, including the numerous associated productivity benefits and anticipated cost-savings, have pushed cloud computing well into the mainstream during 2011.As we move into 2012, International Data Corporation (IDC) predicts that this evolution will continue as more users test the growing capabilities of the public cloud services that are already available.However, by 2015, IDC envisions a very different scenario -- one where cloud services will become commonplace, thereby forcing significant changes in the ongoing adoption of progressive business technology practices throughout legacy IT organizations."In the next 24 months, the 'cloud' as a marketing label will cease to exist, as the success of cloud services will mean that it will permeate the sourcing strategies of the CIO and business unit manager alike," says Chris Morris, Lead Analyst for Cloud Services at IDC Asia/Pacific.He adds, "The use of externally sourced business and IT services from the cloud will form the basis of what we see as the Outsourcing 3.0 period, and will provide an extensive portfolio of services from which innovative solutions can be constructed."How Cloud Drives the Next Wave of OutsourcingWith Outsourcing 3.0, the cloud will metamorphose into a universal service catalog of individual cloud services. This will begin to replace both traditional information technology outsourcing (ITO) and business process outsourcing (BPO) engagements as well as on-premises infrastructure.IDC believes that in an Outsourcing 3.0 scenario, the sourcing of business and IT services from multiple external suppliers will result in a major challenge for the enterprise CIO. They will become a service broker and aggregator, involved in sourcing, integrating and managing the services -- on behalf of their business units.Drawing from the latest research and internal brainstorming sessions amongst IDC's regional and country analysts, the following are five cloud predictions for 2012.These key points represent major trends with either the most significant financial impact or long-term market impact across the Asia-Pacific region, according to the IDC assessment.Less than Half of End-Users across APEJ will complete their Private Cloud Projects by 2014Making 2 + 2 = 1: Cloud Service Orchestration Services Lead the Drive to Outsourcing 3.0Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) will become Verticalized by 2013By the end of 2012, 90% of Telecom Service Providers (SPs) in the APEJ region will have brought a broad portfolio of Cloud Services to market; but, by end of 2013, their Portfolios will become Specialized as they redefine their preferred role in the Cloud Ecosystem and target specific marketsCloud SP (CSPs) strategies based on Aggregation and Resale of IT and business services will Fail to meet Profitability Goals by 2013 unless they can efficiently and effectively Manage, Support and Bill Services from Multiple Service Providers[...]

Global Cloud Index: the Evolution of Data Center Traffic


As 2011 comes to a close, many busy executives and IT managers will be pondering the continued adoption of cloud applications within their organizations. How can a business be adequately prepared for the anticipated increase in demand for managed cloud services? Moreover, what are the key related market indicators that are shaping the future of emerging business technology deployments?The Cisco Global Cloud Index is an ongoing effort to forecast the growth of global data center and cloud-based IP traffic. The forecast includes trends associated with data center virtualization and cloud computing.From 2000 to 2008, peer-to-peer file sharing dominated Internet traffic. As a result, the majority of Internet traffic did not touch a data center, but was communicated directly between Internet users. Since 2008, most Internet traffic has originated or terminated in a data center.Data center traffic will continue to dominate Internet traffic for the foreseeable future, but the nature of data center traffic will undergo a fundamental transformation brought about by cloud applications, services, and infrastructure.By 2015, one-third of data center traffic will be cloud traffic.Global Data Center IP Traffic: Already in the Zettabyte EraThe Internet may not reach the zettabyte era until 2015, but the data center has already entered the zettabyte era. While the amount of traffic crossing the Internet and IP WAN networks is projected to reach nearly 1 zettabyte per year in 2015, the amount of data center traffic is already over 1 zettabyte per year -- and by 2015 will quadruple to reach 4.8 zettabytes per year.This represents a 33 percent CAGR. The higher volume of data center traffic is due to the inclusion of traffic inside the data center (Typically, definitions of Internet and WAN stop at the boundary of the data center).The global data center traffic forecast, a major component of the Global Cloud Index, covers network data centers worldwide operated by service providers as well as private enterprises.Traffic Destinations: Most Traffic Stays Within the Data CenterIn 2010, 77 percent of traffic remains within the data center, and this will decline only slightly to 76 percent by 2015. The fact that the majority of traffic remains within the data center can be attributed to several factors:Functional separation of application servers and storage, which requires all replication and backup traffic to traverse the data center.Functional separation of database and application servers, such that traffic is generated whenever an application reads from or writes to a central database.Parallel processing, which divides tasks into multiple smaller tasks and sends them to multiple servers, contributing to internal data center traffic.The ratio of traffic exiting the data center to traffic remaining within the data center might be expected to increase over time, because video files are bandwidth-heavy and do not require database or processing traffic commensurate with their file size.However, the ongoing virtualization of data centers offsets this trend. Virtualization of storage, for example, increases traffic within the data center because virtualized storage is no longer local to a rack or server.How does the transition of workloads from traditional data centers to cloud data centers effect the typical IT environment? Find the answer to this question, and learn more about the implications, by browsing the Cisco Global Cloud Index forecast data.[...]

Cloud Storage Spending to Reach $22.6 Billion by 2015


Cloud computing demand will drive new IT spending over the next five years, as public cloud service providers and the adopters of private cloud solutions invest in the supporting infrastructure, according to a recent market study by International Data Corporation (IDC). Therefore, the leading managed cloud service providers have been busy expanding their service delivery platforms.Overall spending by public cloud service providers on storage hardware, software, and professional services will grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 23.6 percent from 2010 to 2015, while enterprise spending on storage for the private cloud will experience a CAGR of 28.9 percent. By 2015, combined spending for public and private cloud storage will be $22.6 billion worldwide. "Despite current economic uncertainties, IDC expects cloud service providers -- both public and private -- to be among the most expansive spenders on IT products and services as they continue to build out their facilities worldwide and expand their service options," said Richard Villars, vice president, Storage Systems & Executive Strategies at IDC. According to the IDC assessment, the most significant driver of storage consumption over the past three years has been the emergence of public cloud-based application and infrastructure providers. Many of these service providers act as content depots -- gathering, organizing, and providing access to large quantities of digital content. Meanwhile, other cloud-based service providers have emerged with a focus on delivering IT infrastructure and applications in an "as a service" model. Collectively these companies have undertaken massive storage buildouts as they have expanded their service offerings, entered new markets, and extended their geographic reach.In parallel to the expansion of the public cloud, many organizations have started to deploy their own private clouds for application, compute, and archival storage. Some of these private cloud deployments -- government and research sites -- are comparable in scope and complexity to public cloud environments, while others are limited in scope. Five information requirements are driving storage demands:Enabling more efficient delivery of information/applications to Internet-based customers. Reducing upfront infrastructure investment levels (i.e., cutting the cost and time associated with deploying new IT and compute infrastructure). Minimizing internal IT infrastructure investment associated with "bursty" or unpredictable workloads. Lowering and/or distributing the ongoing costs associated with long-term archiving of information. Enabling near-continuous, real-time analysis of large volumes and wide varieties of customer-, partner-, and machine-generated data (Big Data). To meet these diverse requirements, IDC believes that organizations will continue to demand access to low-cost storage capacity -- plus a growing range of complementary advanced data transformation, security, and analytics solutions."The challenge facing the storage industry will be to balance public cloud service providers' demand for low-cost hardware while boosting demand for advanced software solutions in areas such as object-based storage, automated data tiering, Big Data processing, and advanced archiving services," noted Villars."Big Data developments will be perhaps the most critical new marketplace for storage solutions providers in the coming decade. Providing a strong portfolio of complete Big Data solutions -- hardware, software, and implementation services -- will be a high priority to succeed. Similarly, a [...]

Increased Adoption of Telepresence and New Video Apps


Telepresence and other forms of advanced visual collaboration technologies are moving further into the mainstream of forward-looking business practices. This increase in adoption has been a global phenomenon, as more business leaders follow the numerous application examples of the early-adopters.

Infonetics Research released excerpts from its second quarter 2011 (2Q11) "Enterprise Telepresence and Video Conferencing" report. Their findings demonstrate the progress that's been made so far this year.

Their latest market study provides insights on market size, vendor market share, and analysis for PBX-based video phones and software, as well as dedicated video conference infrastructure and endpoints -- including immersive telepresence and software.

Forecast for Continued Double-Digit Growth

For the first 6 months of 2011, enterprise telepresence and video conferencing equipment revenue is up 24 percent year-over-year -- and according to the current Infonetics market assessment, they expect strong double-digit growth in 2011 over 2010.

"Growth will stay in double-digit territory through at least 2015, thanks to demographic and communication trends favoring video, increasing acceptance of video among users, and specific use cases like tele-learning and tele-medicine," notes Matthias Machowinski, directing analyst for enterprise networks and video at Infonetics Research.

 Enterprise Telepresence and Video Conferencing study insights include:

  • The global enterprise video conferencing and telepresence equipment market jumped 21% to $683 million between the first and second quarters of 2011, setting a record high for quarterly revenue.
  • Year-over-year (2Q10 to 2Q11), the market is up 34 percent.
  • Cisco, the leading vendor, sequentially increased its videoconferencing and telepresence system revenue 33 percent, and now holds over half the global market share.
  • Infonetics forecasts the enterprise telepresence and video conferencing equipment market to grow to $5.4 billion by 2015.
  • Dedicated multi-purpose room video systems make up over half the enterprise video equipment market now and will continue to be the biggest revenue-generator among enterprise video solutions.
  • Meanwhile, videophones are the fastest-growing segment of the market; they are the smallest in size.
  • Regionally, the strongest demand for enterprise video equipment is coming out of North America, China, India, and Brazil.

Growing Demand for Mobile Enterprise Application Services


More capable smartphones and media tablets are now joining a variety of highly portable netbook computers that have already invaded the workplace. Many are being combined with mobile apps that tap into cloud-based productivity solutions.

According to the latest market study by ABI Research, healthcare is one of the most dynamic sectors for mobile technologies, and manufacturing is now the largest sector for mobile enterprise applications worldwide.

By 2016, manufacturing will generate approximately 23 percent of the nearly $5 billion in mobile enterprise application service revenues.

Mobile enterprise applications, also called mobile B2E applications, include dashboard apps, work flow approval apps, and line-of-business applications for both the smartphone and tablet.

ABI's mobile services practice director, Dan Shey, says, "Manufacturing beats healthcare for B2E app adoption and revenues because of its large employment worldwide and the breadth of occupations that can benefit from mobile apps."

China is also one of the biggest drivers for manufacturing B2E mobile app adoption.

Manufacturing is the second largest employer worldwide. Manufacturing also employs a wide range of occupations using B2E apps, including shipping or receiving workers, delivery drivers, management and supervisory personnel, sales, and installation and repair workers.

Moreover, China is the world’s manufacturing hub, which drives B2E app needs -- not only for Chinese manufacturers but also for companies visiting their Chinese subcontractors.

Healthcare is the top sector in B2E mobile app adoption when viewing the data at the regional level. Healthcare leads in Western Europe, the Middle East, and especially North America, where healthcare B2E adoption outpaces manufacturing by nearly five to one.(image)

Enterprise Cloud Applications Ongoing Impact on IT


The transition to managed cloud services is having a trickle-down effect on various stakeholders in the business technology landscape. As an example, in the evolving enterprise communications market, customer premise equipment (CPE) vendors must confront imminent erosion in their installed base -- as cloud services gain traction across the public, private, and hybrid cloud domains.

According to the latest market study by ABI Research, 41 percent of all enterprise communications users -- or 386 million lines or seats -- will be on virtual infrastructure by 2016, which is posing a serious danger to the traditional CPE market.

"For CPE vendors, the cloud threat is real," says ABI senior analyst Subha Rama. "By 2016, the communications CPE market will only grow 4.3 percent, while cloud communications will grow by over 21 percent, reaching $8 billion in revenues."

Smaller vendors with point solutions will see cloud services rapidly displace their installed bases. Moreover, some large systems vendors are becoming cloud providers or key enablers of this migration.

However, according to the ABI assessment, many of the CPE solutions are simply not "cloud ready" and will see performance downgrades when virtualized.

The Top Three Forces Influencing Cloud Migration are:
  1. The growing adoption of data center architectures and virtualization technologies.
  2. The need to integrate multiple applications to deliver the connected experience to users across different devices, including smartphones and media tablets.
  3. The promise of lower costs and increased efficiencies from standardized platforms and processes in the cloud.
Enterprises are adopting a non-linear approach to cloud migration; while certain applications undergo experimentation, others are retained on premises.

Mixed environments and hybridization are becoming the norm, especially with larger enterprises. However, the technology to manage hybrid clouds and to enable seamless movement of applications instances across different vendor clouds is in its infancy.

"Enterprise mobilization is also driving migration to the cloud," says ABI practice director Dan Shey. "Cloud applications ease application delivery for businesses that are increasingly relying on access across fixed and mobile endpoints." (image)

Mobile Enterprise App Development Life-Cycle Services


Media tablet and smartphone software applications (apps) have entered the mainstream of business technology. In fact, results from recent market research by International Data Corporation (IDC) demonstrates that service providers are already reporting increasing enterprise and independent software vendor (ISV) activity -- centered upon the new commercial mobile apps ecosystem that has emerged.These latest developments are establishing mobile initiatives for a variety of horizontal and industry-specific business-to-business (B2B) and business-to-consumer (B2C) application scenarios.Enabling Mobile Enterprise Agile App DevelopmentFurthermore, third parties are increasing their mobile application life-cycle investments to meet the growing demand for mobile applications -- such as native, Web-based or cross-platform -- with an emphasis on accelerating client mobile applications to market at lower total cost of ownership (TCO) with higher productivity and quality.An insightful IDC study has analyzed the emerging new mobility services market and reviewed vendor investments in infrastructure and mobile intellectual property (IP) -- across fourteen different providers.The following are key factors influencing growth in this segment:Accelerating mobile IP creation or investment and partnership activity through component reusability, application factories, and use of internal IP for rapid cross-platform portability are central to service provider investments. Partnerships with mobile enterprise application platform vendors are on the rise as are initiatives that integrate smart device technology with cloud-based back-end applications to improve efficiency, reduce cost, and generate new revenue streams. The importance of usability and user experience (UX) is becoming a critical best practice to accelerate development timeframes and ensure alignment to business expectations.Mobile development is frequently being packaged as part of broader mobile application life-cycle services -- with heightened attention to mobile platform selection, business case development, architectural planning (e.g. back end integration), and agile mobile development and testing."As third-party service providers move forward, they will need to address the broader spectrum of enterprise customer needs, from new entrants to the mobile space to more mature customers that have been engaged in a mobile road map strategy for a few years," said Rona Shuchat, director, Application Outsourcing Services at IDC.The focus will be on building relevant and innovative business-centric solutions -- using mobile device apps as a key enabler.As such, it's important to conceptualize new use-cases that will increase operational efficiencies and facilitate higher worker productivity, lower the cost of end-to-end order and supply chains, or introduce effective new ways of marketing products to end-customers via mobility.[...]




Business Objectives Drive the Shift to Cloud Services


Adoption of cloud computing services continues to accelerate as organizations move from limited deployments to comprehensive solutions, according to the latest market study by CompTIA, the non-profit trade association for the information technology (IT) industry. More than half (56 percent) of the organizations surveyed for the CompTIA study said their investment in cloud computing will increase by 10 percent or more over the next 12 months. “This additional investment will likely be accompanied by greater complexity in the overall cloud strategy, such as moving to a hybrid cloud model or adopting more advanced services beyond Software as a Service (SaaS),” said Seth Robinson, director, technology analysis, CompTIA. ”Organizations may begin exploring options such as Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS), which will allow them to experiment with custom application development.” IT departments are often a key driver behind the transition to managed cloud services, but the CompTIA study suggests individual business unit leaders within an organization are equally or perhaps more likely to now seek out the benefits of a cloud service deployment. About one in five (21 percent) companies surveyed said that line of business leaders championed the transition to a cloud solution -- independently of their IT department.“Most SaaS applications are easily accessible through the Internet, making it relatively easy for business employees to use them without involving the IT staff,” Robinson said. “But there are risks in this approach, as lines of business often do not have the same awareness of security and reliability as the IT department.” Demand for Procurement and Implementation GuidanceThat being said, apparently the results from the study provided no specific evidence of where CIOs or other IT managers demonstrated security breaches -- as a result of business leaders leading the shift to managed cloud services.However, the CompTIA study findings did indicate that there's growing interest throughout these organizations to invest more in cloud computing education and thereby learn about the technology deployment considerations. Although the mainstream business manager's understanding of cloud computing has improved over the past year, many users continue to have questions regarding details of cloud service implementation. The 2010 CompTIA cloud computing study found that 60 percent of end users desired a clearer definition of cloud computing. In 2011, that number increased to 66 percent. Areas where users want more clarity include the types of cloud computing offerings (Software as a Service, Platform as a Service and Infrastructure as a Service) and the types of deployment models (public cloud, private cloud or hybrid cloud services).Attainment of Business Objectives Drives the Shift to CloudOrganizations that have invested the time to learn about -- or are experimenting with -- cloud solutions indicate they have a higher level of comfort with cloud computing offerings. Approximately 72 percent of these organizations feel more positive about cloud computing now than they did one year ago. Another 25 percent of survey respondents report no change in their perception.“For those who feel more positively about the cloud than they did a year ago, the primary reasons are the technical benefits and the ability to achieve other business objectives,” Robinson noted. [...]

How Mobile Applications will Transform all Businesses


Mobile communication related activity is now considered the number one business technology issue on the minds of IT professionals in the Asia-Pacific region, according to the latest market study by IDC. Their analysts have been exploring, in depth, what mobility really means for organizations and how utilizing a variety of commercial mobile applications will become the norm in the near future.Clearly, enterprise mobility has been a familiar topic for savvy business and technology leaders within most multinational organizations. For many companies it means mobile email, perhaps some form of unified communications (UC) or fixed mobile convergence (FMC).Moreover, for the more adventurous IT leaders, they have already embarked on extending workplace applications into the mobile environment.How Mobility Supports Operational Business Goals Tim Dillon, IDC's Associate Vice President for Asia-Pacific says, "That's yesterday's view. It's changed. Organizations that continue to take enterprise mobility for granted will be swept aside in the new environment. Today, we’re seeing what we could call a perfect storm, created by the evolution of different areas of technology combining to fundamentally, and drastically change how organizations can use enterprise mobility to support business goals and strategies."IDC research clients are seeing new access networks, new devices, new mobile operating systems, business related applications (apps), platforms and delivery models come together to create an all-embracing enterprise mobility.Previous IT turning points were the move from mainframes to desktops, and the growth of Internet access. Now, new mobile devices and numerous productivity-oriented applications will constitute the next wave of business technology adoption.Amongst the many issues that IDC will continue to explore, perhaps the changing landscape for devices is most prevalent -- where media tablets, such as the Apple iPad, and large-screen smartphones can now run almost fully functional versions of all enterprise software and services.Smarter and more capable mobile operating systems, along with the applied talent of independent software developers, are providing the market with the ingredients for an agile ecosystem that can quickly mobilize these new applications -- extending the functionality of virtually all IT systems to mainstream mobile devices.Mobility Combined with Cloud Computing Services Dillon adds, "ICT is evolving on multiple fronts to create a true revolution in mobility. As enterprise applications become mobile, the boundaries of the enterprise become extended and blurred. With the constant evolution in devices and applications that tap into the core enterprise systems, all systems become increasingly vulnerable to the acts of negligent users and malicious attacks -- companies will need to pair pervasive mobility with ubiquitous security."Furthermore, as more and more communication and collaboration applications transition to the cloud -- via either managed public or private cloud computing services -- demand for mobile access is likely to increase, in line with the continued user adoption of multifaceted smartphones and purpose-built business-centric tablets. [...]