Cloud for Africa
COMPUTING| July 25, 2012, 12:58 p.m.
Some analysts and vendors define cloud computing narrowly as an updated version of utility computing: essentially virtual servers available over the Internet. Others go very broad, arguing that anything you consume outside the firewall is in the cloud, including conventional outsourcing. One thing the industry agrees on, however, is that cloud computing is the future of computing.
International Data Corporation (IDC) predicts a five-year annual growth rate of 26% in IT cloud computing services, more thansix times the rate of traditional IT offerings, and that 27 percent of the net new IT revenue in 2013 will come from IT cloud services.
According to analyst firm Gartner, the cloud services market grew 16.6 percent last year, and it predicts that by 2014 cloud services revenue will balloon to USD148.8 billion worldwide. Research company Forrester concurs, predicting that while cloud hype from vendors, the media and other sources will continue to exceed actual user adoption, the various cloud markets and services will start making more sense to business buyers.
Altech ISIS general manager Anton van Heerden says that the company’s understanding of the importance of cloud in the computing and business ecosystems was the reason Altech ISIS began focusing on becoming a cloud services leader during the past few years.
“Cloud services will certainly have a major impact on the IT market over the short term and given the growth potential of cloud services offerings over traditional ones, that percentage will grow very quickly in subsequent years. We are seeing evidence of the growth predictions of the leading international research houses in the increased interest in cloud computing from our customers, proving that our early focus on this area was opportune.”
He adds that this is especially true in Africa, where the bandwidth battle is fast becoming a thing of the past with the landing of the SEACOM and EASSy cables, as well as the BRICS Cable – which is a 34 000 km, 2 optical fibre pair, 12.8 Tbit/s capacity, fibre optic cable system – will be linking Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (the BRICS economies) and the United States. It will interconnect, amongst others, with the WACS cable on the West coast of Africa, and the EASSY and SEACOM cables on the East coast of the continent. This will give the BRICS countries immediate access to 21 African countries and give those African countries access to the BRICS economies.
“African countries have the ability to accelerate the development of the use of new technologies in advance rather than being reactive. Cloud computing can provide an evolution of the way African businesses approach technology.” Van Heerden says. “Cloud computing is a complex and rapidly evolving concept. First, one needs to understand how cloud computing is defined, and how it will evolve. This will enable an understanding of when, where, how and why enterprises should exploit cloud computing services. It will also help with an understanding of the optimum circumstances for deploying cloud computing.”
As a cloud services broker, Altech ISIS concentrates on improving efficiencies across an entire organisation through the effective implementation of cloud-based solutions. The company’s unique approach allows it to evaluate which cloud-computing models, architectures, technologies and best practices its clients should adopt, and to analyse how cloud computing will affect the strategy and direction of IT and the business.
“The cloud offers new delivery styles and options that are industrialised in a value chain that renders on-premises IT systems and expertise as only part of the overall delivery of IT capabilities to the company. Cloud computing allows IT to evolve its existing function as a department somewhere in the building that runs the reports and keeps the lights on in the server room, to a business unit that helps take the organisation to the next level of efficiency,” he explains.
Van Heerden believes that it is inevitable that all organisations will have to eventually to be part of this shift so as to avoid another risk - losing ground to competitors that are taking the risk. However, the move to cloud computing can be daunting for many businesses. As a broker, Altech ISIS provides the expertise to allow companies to make the shift painlessly, offering a complete service from building a specific business case to strategically implementing a solution.
“Potentially every service, every consumer, and every combination of services may need brokerage. Companies need to align the technology with their business strategy; a move that requires specific expertise in order to be successful. We manage all the steps in the process to ensure that our clients obtain the full value that cloud computing offers,” he concludes.
MORE COMPUTING NEWS
Huawei identifies unique cloud solutions for NigeriaICT solutions provider Huawei said after a comprehensive study of Nigerian enterprise terrain, it has defined its cloud transformation agenda along four segmentations. Read More
100 non-profits receive Microsoft grants to close gap in computer scienceMicrosoft Philanthropies has announced grants for over 100 non-profits worldwide, of which 14 are in the Middle East and Africa. Read More
Liquid Telecom Kenya launches data protection ‘CrashPlan for Africa’In a bid to guard against rising cases of IT related frauds causing financial losses to businesses, Liquid Telecom Kenya has launched a backup and restore service dubbed CrashPlan for Africa, for businesses in Kenya to secure their data. Read More
Airtel, Microsoft encourage girls to look to ICT careersAirtel Ghana, through its Evolve with STEM initiative, has collaborated with Microsoft Ghana for the maiden edition of the internationally acclaimed DigiGirlz Day in the country. Read More
Mellanox adds Cumulus Linux support for Ethernet switchesMellanox Technologies, a leading supplier of high-performance, end-to-end interconnect solutions for data centre servers and storage systems, has announced that it has added Cumulus Linux support for the Spectrum line of 10/25, 40/50, and 100 Gb/s Ethernet switches. Read More
Huawei takes big data solutions to ZambiaCloud computing and big data were the subjects of a high-tech roadshow brought to Zambia by leading global information and communications technology (ICT) solutions provider Huawei Technologies this week. Read More
ProLabs launches SFP+ module that extends the life of Switch HardwareProLabs, the leading global provider of network infrastructure and connectivity products, has announced the introduction of a 10GBASE-T SFP+ transceiver, which will allow data centre and network managers the ability to extend the life of their cabling infrastructure with a simple cost effective upgrade. Read More
World Development Report addresses persistent digital divideAccording to the latest World Bank 2016 World Development Report on Digital Dividends, six billion people lack access to high speed internet and 4 billion still have no internet access at all. Read More
Dr Ndukwe Chairs BoICT Lecture/AwardsDr Ernest Ndukwe, national coordinator of Alliance for Affordable Internet (A4AI), Nigeria and former executive vice chairman and CEO of the Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC) would chair this year's Beacon of ICT (BoICT) Distinguished Lecture/Awards Series, the organisers said. Read More
Huawei Uganda set to Launch “Seeds for the Future”In a move aimed at deepening ICT among the youth, Huawei is set to officially launch the “Seeds for the Future” Program in Uganda. Read More
FEATURED STORYNigeria satellite resources to boost economic growth
The Management of NigComSat says Nigeria’s satellite resources are primed to help the nation in accelerating robust ICT infrastructure to boost economic development for the country.
BEST READ NEWS
IN DEPTHIBM Opens First Cloud Data Centre in South Africa
IBM is opening a new IBM Cloud Data Centre in Johannesburg, South Africa. The new cloud center is the result of a close collaboration with Gijima and Vodacom and is designed to support cloud adoption and customer demand across the continent.
COMPANY NEWSRSA research reveals blind spots in threat detection
RSA, The Security Division of EMC, has released the results of a new Threat Detection Effectiveness Survey.Networks Unlimited event highlights SimpliVity's new Omnistack Software
Leading data protection focused distributor invites hyperconverged vendor to discuss disaster recovery and data protection.MTN and Ericsson lead the way with first LTE-U network
To future proof its business, MTN SA, together with Ericsson, has successfully trialled LTE-Unlicensed (LTE-U) at MTN’s flagship channel store in Morningside, Johannesburg.