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What's really in store for Malaysia's IT industry in 2017?

AvantiKumar | Jan. 9, 2017
(MAJOR UPDATES) New leadership insights from PIKOM, MDEC, CyberSecurity Malaysia, Cyberview, IDC, Gartner, BAE Systems, 11street, Canvas/Instructure, Cloudera, Hitachi Data Systems (HDS), Hitachi Sunway, Red Hat, Cisco, AIMS Group, Fortinet, Sophos, Emerio, Brocade, Cognizant, Outsystems, Symantec, VADS, and Veeam.


   Meanwhile, Hu Yoshida (pic above), Chief Technology Officer, Hitachi Data Systems, said: "Everything next year will be impacted by the major move to digital transformation, as per the ten following major trends across the data centre, technology, and IoT:

1. Productivity gains will be more about people, process and business out comes
"Despite the explosion of new technology over the past 10 years, productivity has declined compared to the previous 10 years, even in the countries that are viewed to be the most tech savvy. This is according to an OECD (Office of Economic Co-operation and Development)."

2. The Agile transformation of IT
"The mantra for IT will shift from doing more with less to doing more - faster. Businesses are under tremendous pressure to transform and that means implementing innovative new applications and platforms for all aspects of their business."

3. Buying models are changing
"The market is shifting away from technology asset purchasing. Businesses are rethinking the buying model for their IT purchases both in infrastructure and services. This is influenced by the advantages of reduced costs, increased agility and improved time to value of cloud and hosted services."

4. Accelerating transition to the cloud
"Cloud-first strategies are the foundation for staying relevant in a fast-paced world," according to Ed Anderson, research vice president at Gartner. IT managers will be developing skills in cloud monitoring, cloud workload performance and security management, and cloud capacity management. It is no longer a question of 'whether' but 'when''."

5. Bi-Modal IT
"Companies that are not born in the cloud have systems of record that they must maintain and modernise while they transform to new systems of innovation. Bimodal IT refers to having two modes of IT, each designed to develop and deliver information and technology-intensive services in its own way:
Mode 1: Traditional - emphasizes safety and accuracy
Mode 2: Nonlinear - emphasizes agility and speed
IT must be able to manage both modes and implement systems that can bridge between these two modes. While some may consider this to be a data centre trend, this requires technology to integrate these two modes."

6. Flash first
"The TCO per bit cost for multi-terabyte flash is already lower than hard disks based on 5 year projections for power, cooling, floor space, maintenance, and ease of management."

7. A centralised Data Hub
"Data is exploding, and data is becoming more valuable as we find ways to correlate data from different sources to gain more insight, or we repurpose old data for different uses. Data is our crown jewels, and IT will be creating a centralised data hub for better management, protection, governance and search of their data. This centralised data hub will need to be an object store that can scale beyond the limitations of file systems, ingest data from different sources, and provide search and governance across public and private clouds and mobile devices."

8. Real time analysis, Hadoop, visualisation, and predictive analytics will be a major focus
"Predictive analytics is becoming more prevalent as businesses try to anticipate the events that affect their business. This trend will see the expanded use of in-memory databases, and streaming analytics platforms to provide real time analysis of developing trends."

9. Smart IT:  The Integration of IT and OT
"Operational technology (OT) data may be data from sensors or logs that can augment the data from IT to provide a more complete understanding of an event or process. This will be the foundation for Smart Banks, Smart retail, Smart transportation, Smart Manufacturing, etc. Retailers are already at the forefront combining operational data from in-store sensors and social media to optimise purchasing and supply chain systems. More businesses will be looking for data integration tools like Pentaho to integrate their IT and OT data."

10. Growing awareness of IoT in the Data Centre
"The internet of things (IoT) is the networking of physical devices, vehicles, buildings and other items-embedded with electronics, software, sensors, actuators, and network connectivity that enable these objects to collect, exchange and even process data on the edge. The networking of things will impact every aspect of our lives. This goes beyond the integration of IT and OT and except for a few applications like public safety, will not be a major IT trend in 2017."

"However, the decisions we make in IT in 2017 should be made with an eye to IoT. The integration of IT and OT with analytics is the first step. To address IoT requires more than the vertical integration of industry silos, but a horizontal platform of reusable components so that the front end is integrated with the backend business systems," he said.

Albert Chai - Managing Director for Cisco Malaysia

Albert Chai (pic above), Managing Director, Cisco Malaysia, said: "Giant strides forward have been made for a Digitized Malaysia. 2016 has been an exciting year for Malaysia as we begin to reap the benefits of digitisation across many industries and catch a glimpse of the boundless potential that disruptive technologies can bring."

"One of the most iconic technology phenomenon we see this year is Pokémon Go. This augmented reality (AR) mobile game melds the real and virtual world to create a new and transformative experience for users and disrupted the market in record time. As with all disruptive innovations, it shifts our perspective, presents different ways of looking at things, transforms experiences, changes behaviours and creates new business models."

"Digital innovations of varying scale have been occurring across Malaysia over the past year. In the manufacturing space, the Federation of Malaysian Manufacturers (FMM) are encouraging factories to embrace Industry 4.0, where "self-aware" smart sensors can communicate with other machines and intelligent robotics can adjust automatically to anomalies. Fintech companies also are radically reshaping the financial services landscape with new digital payment models and providing small and medium enterprises (SMEs) with new digital platforms to access a wider pool of funding."

"And it is heartening to see that all trends point towards another year of growth and acceleration for digitization in 2017. Gartner estimates that global IT spending in 2017 will rise and reach USD3.5 trillion (RM14.62 trillion), up by 2.9 percent from 2016. The increase will be driven by prevailing technology trends such as cloud services, automation, intelligence and security."

"In Malaysia, the recent announcements and measures from Budget 2017 show that the country is on the right track to boost its digital economy. The government's recent pledge to increase the quality and coverage of nationwide broadband, the unveiling of My Digital Maker talent development initiative and the introduction of Malaysia Digital Hub will play a vital role in building an ecosystem that is conducive towards harnessing the potential of technology. All these initiatives will take us closer to realizing our vision of a Digitized Malaysia and better position our nation to capture the US$24 trillion (RM100 trillion) potential value enabled by digital transformation."

"As digitisation becomes increasingly important in the national agenda, digital technologies will become more mature and pervasive and new, digitally driven business models will change the nature of competition. Organizations in Malaysia will need so start devising how they can derive the greatest value from technology.
Some companies are leveraging technology to enable their digital strategies. They are seeking IT agility and operational effectiveness to move faster and reduce their cost structure."

"Others are using digital to differentiate their strategies, such as by delivering the ultimate customer experience. They are employing technology for new products and services, and they are redefining some of their business processes.
Organizations who are furthest along their digital journey can harness technology to define their strategies. These companies are reimagining entire industries with new business models and disrupting the incumbents."

"However, no matter what approach they take, cybersecurity needs to be at the heart of every organisation's digital transformation strategy."

"Companies are now more wary after witnessing a spate of cybersecurity incidents occurring over the last 12 months. These include the malware attack on a foreign bank's platform to steal US$81 million (RM333.5 million) in February and the Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attack exploiting vulnerabilities IoT devices that lead widespread outage of popular websites such as Twitter, Spotify, and Netflix in October."

"As more and more business value and assets migrate into a digital form, the cost of each security breach is rapidly rising. They often result in tremendous financial losses and inflict a lasting damage on the organisation's reputation. A weak cybersecurity posture also undermines innovation," said Chai.

"Businesses in Malaysia need to recognise that cybersecurity is more than just a way to stop threats, it is a strategic advantage that protects and enables new business value," he said. "After all, new digital services and business models are only sustainable if it is secure and end-users have confidence that their personal data is well-protected. As organizations continue to digitize and innovate in 2017, the biggest opportunity comes when they make cybersecurity the backbone of their digital strategies."


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