Displaying items by tag: collaboration
PTC spearheads success of ICT industry in the Pacific
As the Chief Growth Officer at Bankai Group and member of the Pacific Telecommunications Council Organization (PTC), Nakul Rege is responsible for successfully expanding the Group's footprint globally across all segments – wholesale, retail and technology solutions. Telecom Review explores PTC’s vast influence on the ICT sector and what this means for the future of telecoms in the Pacific Rim.
For the benefit of our readers, could you please explain the organization’s role within the industry and how it has benefitted its subscribers?
The Pacific Telecommunications Council (PTC) is a global non-profit membership organization promoting the advancement of information and communication technologies (ICT) in the Pacific Rim, including Pacific islands, through collaboration, knowledge, and outreach. PTC is led by a Board of Governors and an Advisory Council, both comprising of global executives in the telecom, academia, and other ICT industries.
I first attended PTC’s annual conference in 1992. I found it gave all operators and carriers working with Pacific region operators an opportunity to meet and negotiate with senior executives in a less formal setting, to get to know them better and to set the course of action at the start of the business plan year.
You are always learning something new at each PTC annual conference, meeting new faces and it helps you keep in touch with developments and changes in the world, particularly in the Pacific area. A few years ago, I decided to serve on the Advisory Council and give back to PTC and share with newer members my experience and knowledge in this field.
Unlike other organizations, funds from PTC annual conferences and membership support research and projects to improve the quality of life in the Pacific Rim. One example is the PTC Academy where experts share their knowledge and experience with young executives from around the globe. Many ‘students’ welcome this opportunity to learn and improve their skills and are able to go back more motivated and it has a positive effect on their fellow colleagues and their organizations as a whole.
Another example is the PTC Young Scholar Program (YSP) and Research Awards that encourage young scholars to submit papers, which are independently reviewed and awards given, with the opportunity to present their research at PTC’s annual conference. This brings in new blood into the telecom and ICT industry.
In addition to its annual global conference, what other events or projects does the PTC get involved in to advance its role in the ecosystem?
Many people think of PTC as simply the January conference but it is a lot more than that. There are various chapters in Japan and India associated with the PTC. Apart from the Academy Young Scholar Program, and Research Awards mentioned earlier, PTC also funds projects that promote the use of telecommunications and ICT to improve the quality of life in the Pacific region.
Additionally, the PTC network continues to expand, as there are individuals involved with subsea cables, data centers, satellite technology as well as the major players these days like Google, Facebook, and Amazon. PTC’s Board of Governors and Advisory Council, with their knowledge and industry experience, work hand-in-hand to provide strategic direction of PTC’s involvement and work in the industry.
In your experience, what do you believe are the advantages of being a member of the PTC?
I have attended every PTC annual conference since 1992 and by being a PTC member, it has enabled me and my colleagues to develop long relationships with people. Knowing your subject matter is important but earning the respect and understanding of people takes a very long time – it is difficult to imagine this developing without my companies (over the years) being members of PTC.
Over time, as you understand the challenges that some of the Pacific Islands face in their day to day operations to communicate with their own people (some countries extend over 1 million square miles across the Pacific), you want to assist them to the best of your abilities. The academy and research studies that the PTC is involved with is only a small step but it is in the right direction.
The telecom and ICT community is very closely knit. Based on my personal experience, once you are in it, you are often associated with it for a long period of time. Your actions are seen by all and communicated by others in different parts of the world. People will also find the need to communicate with each other as long as life exists - there were days of Telex and Telegram, then voice (regulated and unregulated), Internet, now OTTs but more and more people are being brought together as part of the ecosystem.
Membership fees at PTC contribute to the overall growth of activities that the Council can run – it is a non-profit organization. The memberships have been tailored according to company size, university, and individual member capabilities. In addition, if there are specific topics or areas that members would like to be addressed, PTC welcomes the feedback and insights on new ideas and initiatives.
Do you have any future plans in the pipeline for the PTC?
Some of the steps that the council has recently taken is to expand the Board of Governors categories to Middle East and Africa regions and encourage global participation and not just restrict the area of coverage to the Pacific Rim/Asia regions.
The PTC Job Board is a recent PTC Member benefit that has been set up to allow members to post job vacancies that are available for the general public to view and apply. The PTC Academy was being held once or twice a year, and in 2020 is now expected to be held four times.
All these actions have been based on member feedback but the core mission and objectives of PTC remain. I am sure as the participation of the OTTs increases, it is expected that they will also make some changes based on their outlook. New contributing members and fresh ideas are therefore important for the long term success of PTC, their members and the Pacific region.
European vendor completes 5G New Radio pilot in Singapore
European telecommunications vendor Nokia has announced that it has completed the first outdoor pilot of 5G New Radion on 3.5GHz frequency with Singaporean operator StarHub.
Nokia and Xiaomi announce business collaboration and patent agreement
Nokia and Xiaomi announced that they have signed a business collaboration agreement and a multi-year patent agreement, including a cross license to each company's cellular standard essential patents. Xiaomi also acquired patent assets from Nokia as part of the transaction.
"Xiaomi is one of the world's leading smartphone manufacturers and we are delighted to have reached an agreement with them," said Rajeev Suri, President and CEO of Nokia. "In addition to welcoming such a prominent global technology company to our family of patent licensees, we look forward to working together on a wide range of strategic projects."
Under the business cooperation agreement, Nokia will provide network infrastructure equipment designed to deliver the high capacity, low power requirements expected by large web providers and datacenter operators. Nokia and Xiaomi will work together on optical transport solutions for datacenter interconnect, IP Routing based on Nokia's newly announced FP4 network processor, and a data center fabric solution. In addition, the companies have agreed to explore opportunities for further cooperation, in areas such as Internet of Things, augmented and virtual reality, and artificial intelligence.
With presence in over 30 countries and regions, Xiaomi is well known for its smartphones packed with innovative technologies at disruptive prices. Beyond smartphones, Xiaomi is also a leading Internet of Things player. The Mi Ecosystem IoT platform has crossed 60 million connected devices, and there are now over 8 million daily active connected devices on the Mi Ecosystem platform.
"As a company seeking to deliver more exciting technological innovations to the world, we are excited at the opportunity to work more closely with Nokia in future," said Lei Jun, chairman and CEO of Xiaomi. "Xiaomi is committed to building sustainable, long-term partnerships with global technology leaders. Our collaboration with Nokia will enable us to tap on its leadership in building large, high performance networks and formidable strength in software and services, as we seek to create even more remarkable products and services that deliver the best user experience to our Mi fans worldwide."
Zain and IBM collaborate to launch ‘Cloud Disaster Recovery’ service in Kuwait
Zain, Kuwait’s leading telecommunications company, today announced their collaboration to launch a new cloud disaster recovery service that will provide IBM and Zain’s enterprise customers with cloud-based business continuity capabilities and faster disaster recovery of their critical IT systems, without incurring the infrastructure expense of a second physical site. Through the new service, customers will benefit from the added flexibility of keeping their data in-country on IBM Cloud.
The disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) market size in the Middle East is $100.64 million and is expected to see a compound annual growth rate of 44.8 percent through 2021. The Middle East region is experiencing a significant increase in DRaaS adoption due to the increasing number of cyberattacks and other data threats like security breaches, software and hardware failures, and power outages, according to MarketsandMarkets.
The new cloud disaster recovery service will help protect IBM and Zain customers against data loss from their own servers or from other cloud services, and can maintain readiness without the need to invest in additional physical space or stand-by hardware. The service will provide replication of critical applications, infrastructure, data and systems to IBM Cloud so customers can recover from an IT outage within minutes.
Amr Refaat, General Manager, IBM Middle East and Pakistan, commented: “Unplanned downtime or data loss is a risk any business can face. Not only can this lead to business loss but present a threat to a company’s reputation amongst its customers, stakeholders, and the wider public. Having a resiliency plan in place should play an integral part in every business. Through the new cloud disaster recovery service, IBM and Zain customers can run their operations at ease, while we provide around-the-clock monitoring of the recovery environments.”
“Today’s announcement comes as part of our vision to transform Zain into a digital lifestyle provider," said Zain Kuwait’s Chief Executive Officer Eaman Al Roudhan. “The business needs of our corporate customers are continuously changing, and offering them innovative solutions to help maintain resiliency is a top priority for us.”
The cloud disaster recovery team will monitor developing disaster events 24/7 and help ensure that the infrastructure of IBM and Zain customers is equipped to handle the latest threats to keep data, applications and transactions secure. The new service will also enable customers to adjust and customize their resiliency strategies to their own requirements to optimize recovery time.
The new service underscores IBM’s expanding business continuity and resiliency services portfolio. In today’s “always-on” world, IBM offerings like DRaaS and Cloud Resiliency Orchestration are built to simplify and automate the disaster recovery process, increase workflow efficiency, and reduce risk, cost, and system testing time for clients around the world. With more than 50 years of business continuity and disaster recovery experience, today IBM has over 300 resiliency centers across 68 countries.
Zain’s strategy of being a sustainable digital communications company has long focused on the customer experience and using technology to create more value for the customer. The launch of this service is one of the major steps in the company’s strategic plan to introduce more distinctive digital services dedicated to corporate and enterprise customers.
Apple joins tech industry alliance aimed at establishing best practices for AI
Apple has joined a technology industry alliance which aims to establish the best practices for the opportunities and challenges faced within the field of AI. Apple joins Microsoft, Amazon, Google, Facebook, IBM and Google-owned British AI firm DeepMind who last year established the non-profit organization which they called ‘Partnership on AI’.
In a statement issued by the Partnership on AI group, they formally announced Apple’s participation within the research organization as they became the sixth founding member. It further disclosed in the statement that Apple had been involved in a consultancy capacity with the partnership prior to its formal launch in September last year. It was also revealed that the partnership will host its inaugural board meeting in San Francisco in February.
The collaboration between the major tech companies involved in this partnership have stated that in addition to establishing the best practices for the opportunities and challenges of AI- they have also expressed their desire to address issues including privacy, interoperability and collaboration between people and AI systems.
The statement read, “Apple has been involved and has been collaborating with the partnership since before it was first announced and we’re thrilled to formalize its membership. Major technology firms have joined forces in this group and have stated aims including cooperation on "best practices" for AI and using the technology to benefit people and society.”
The partnership was established following concerns raised that new AI efforts could potentially spin out of control and ultimately end up being severely detrimental to society. The collaboration between the tech firms will see them embark on research, the recommendation of best practices, and will publish research under an open license in areas such as ethics, fairness, inclusivity, transparency, privacy and interoperability.
According to the statement, It will seek to examine the collaboration between people and AI systems which will test the trustworthiness, reliability and robustness of the technology.
Tech companies have already invested heavily in creating software in order to help machines think more like people – ideally acting as virtual assistants who get to know how users and attempt to try and anticipate their needs and requirements.
In 2015, Tesla CEO, Elon Musk and SpaceX founder participated in the establishment of a nonprofit research company named Open AI which was devoted to developing AI that would help people and not hurt them. However, he became embroiled in controversy within the technology world by stating that AI could turn on humanity and be its ruin instead of a salvation.
A concern expressed by Musk was that highly advanced artificial intelligence would be left to its own devices, or in the hands of a few people, to the detriment of civilization as a whole.
People joining tech company executives on the Partnership board included Dario Amodei of Open AI along with members of the American Civil Liberties Union; the MacArthur Foundation, and the University of California, Berkeley.
China Mobile announce collaboration with Ericsson as part of combined efforts on IoT
China Mobile have officially announced a partnership with Swedish telecommunications colossus Ericsson as part of their collective ambition on the Internet of Things (IoT) – which will see them attempt to serve 200 million connected devices by the end of the year.
In a joint statement, the companies announced they penned a strategic agreement during a China Mobile Global Partner Conference in December. The statement further disclosed that an in-depth cooperation to manage connections efficiently, provide a consistent service to global enterprise customers and explore new IoT markets were shared by both organizations during the event.
The make-up of the partnership will see the Chinese operator use Ericsson’s Device Connectivity Platform to improve the process of connecting devices, while also deploying services to help drive new revenue. Ericsson’s IoT platform was launched in 2008 and today supports more than 1,500 industry customers through 24 operators.
A spokesman for China Mobile said it will be able to integrate resources of its roaming partners and offer global enterprise customers connectivity based on its service level agreements. They added that it will further benefit “from a common and unified approach to customer portals and selection of access networks.”
For Ericsson, the deal marks another step in its push around IoT as it continues to diversify amid a downturn in its core networks business. In addition to its Device Connection Platform, Ericsson also works with the global M2M association and the Bridge Alliance.
Head of Region North East Asia at Ericsson, Chris Houghton said that IoT applications will help promote the development and deployment of 5G technology. He said: “We look forward to supporting China Mobile and developing this business while accelerating large-scale deployments of Internet of Things across the world.”
French football club PSG announce digital partnership with Ericsson
French football giants Paris Saint Germaine have announced details of a digital partnership with Swedish telecommunications colossus Ericsson. The Parisian side - are considered to be one of the most famous clubs in world football. The collaboration between PSG and Ericsson is aimed at providing a range of solutions and services that will transform the digital experience for fans, players and support personnel.
PSG aim to become one of the most technology advanced teams in world football – they have already invested significantly in terms of recruiting some of the games most talented players, but now they are ready to embrace advancements made in innovation, sports science and digital technology - which will enable staff to analyze and prepare players in the most professional way possible.
PSG’s digital partnership with Ericsson will see them gain access to a sports performance information system, a digital experience backend system - and in addition to this they will also receive improved technology consulting and innovation services.
The official partnership between these two leaders in their respective industries was announced at a press conference which was held at PSG’s iconic Parc des Princes stadium – and it was conveyed to the assembled media that the joint-venture is focused on building the new digital experience of the French giants - with the help of Ericsson’s expertise, it is hoped the club will become one of the leaders in sports technology.
Ericsson will become an Official Partner and will provide Paris Saint-Germain with three main types of support: a sports performance information system; a digital experience backend system; and technology consulting and innovation services.
This partnership will allow Ericsson to showcase its digital know-how and engage with football fans globally thanks to the club’s growing international footprint.
Frédéric Longuépée, Paris Saint-Germain Deputy General Manager, says: “We are delighted to welcome Ericsson to the Paris Saint-Germain family. One of our aims as a club is to become one of the top sports franchises in the world, and digital transformation is clearly a key priority. We are confident signing with Ericsson represents a major step forward. We aim to make the most from existing and future technology to further enrich the experience of all the club’s stakeholders.”
Helena Norrman, Senior Vice President and Chief Marketing and Communications Officer, says: “We are very excited with this agreement that will both help Paris Saint-Germain to improve its sports performance and its fan experience, as well as allow Ericsson to show its technological leadership. Together with Paris Saint-Germain’s staff, we will ensure that one of the most successful clubs is also one of the most technologically advanced.”
The information system will consist of a centrally managed data storage platform that stores, manages and controls data captured from all of Paris Saint-Germain’s sports-related businesses.
Secondly, Ericsson will create, operate and manage a digital experience backend system which will be the single point of access to data and services required by all of Paris Saint-Germain’s digital platforms, including its web site, mobile apps, onsite fan experience solution, and in-stadium big screens and monitors.
Thirdly, Ericsson will provide Paris Saint-Germain with technology consulting and innovation services. A joint team of Ericsson and Paris Saint-Germain staff will analyze and define new solutions, innovations and improvements.
Alibaba Cloud, PCCW Global extend collaboration to provide enterprises more security against cybercrime
Alibaba Cloud, the cloud computing arm of Alibaba Group, and PCCW Global, the international operating division of HKT, Hong Kong’s premier telecommunications service provider, jointly announced on August 25 their expanded strategic collaboration to provide cloud based anti-DDoS (distributed denial-of-service) security products to enterprises.
The two companies have cooperated to provide network and IDC (Internet Data Center) services in Hong Kong since June 2015. The new collaboration will deliver Alibaba Cloud’s world-class anti-DDoS products to international business customers through PCCW Global.
Alibaba Cloud’s anti-DDoS products sold and distributed through PCCW Global will offer businesses comprehensive protection against all types of DDoS threats, including complex layer 7 application-level attacks. The automatic cloud-based service monitors compliance violations and security breaches to provide real-time threat visibility.
Mr. Marc Halbfinger, Chief Executive Officer of PCCW Global, said: “We are pleased to be playing a role in extending Alibaba Cloud’s capabilities to new markets. The relationship with Alibaba Cloud is a remarkable opportunity to provide our combined customers with the very best in data security, customer-service quality, and network coverage. Adding Alibaba Cloud’s security products to our threat identification systems will offer enterprises a holistic perspective of complete security needs.”
Alibaba Cloud’s cloud platform has a proven track record in handling extremely high traffic levels which can easily be a target for DDoS attacks. Alibaba Cloud’s success in processing a peak order volume of over 140,000 orders per second during Alibaba Group’s 11.11 Global Shopping Festival last year is a powerful validation of Alibaba Cloud’s security reliability.
DDoS attacks occur when multiple systems are used to flood the access capacity of a targeted system. In recent years, sophisticated DDoS attacks have increased in frequency, size and complexity. Alibaba Cloud successfully thwarted one of the world’s largest cyberattacks on December 20, 2014, protecting a gaming app company from a 14-hour long DDoS attack with peak attacking traffic of 453.8 gigabits per second.
Not only has Alibaba Cloud nullified some of the largest cyberattacks in history, but its security technologies are now scalable such that PCCW Global will be able to offer service guarantees for various forms of security applications.
Since the acquisition of Crypteia Networks in 2014, PCCW Global has been a leading provider of cybersecurity for global enterprises across multiple network layers. In China, Alibaba Cloud has developed its own world class anti-DDOS software and security services. This collaboration will further protect their customers and businesses from the ever increasing threat of cyberattack.