Google Play Music is officially dead across the world, and you have until December 2020 to migrate your music library and playlists to YouTube Music.
Find out how to download your music library and playlists from Google Play Music before they are deleted forever!
Google Play Music Is Dead : Whaaaaat???
On 4 April 2020, Google dropped the bombshell – they announced that they were replacing Google Play Music play with YouTube Music by December 2020.
They would kill off Google Play Music starting September 2020 in New Zealand and South Africa, and October 2020 for the rest of the world.
Users will no longer be allowed to stream from, or use the Google Play Music app from that point onwards. They will only be allowed to transfer their music libraries to YouTube Music.
Even that migration offer is limited to December 2020, after which the Google Play Music libraries will be deleted and will no longer be available to download or transfer to YouTube Music.
Google Play Music Is Dead : Download Your Music Now!
Google offers the option to migrate your Google Play Music libraries and playlists to YouTube Music, but you may not want to do that for these reasons :
128 kbps quality limit for free subscriptions
you can’t upload your own music through the app, only using an Internet browser
offline playback of your own music requires you to upload and then download the same music
Before deciding what to do next, the first thing you should do is download your music library.
You have until the end of December 2020 to download your music, so do it now!
Open Google Play Music.
Tap on Manage Your Data.
Tap on Download your music library.
Leave Google Play Music checked.
Select to export once.
Select the more common .zip file format, or the .tgz alternative
Select the maximum file size you prefer – 1 GB, 2 GB, 4 GB, 10 GB or 50 GB.
Google will split your files into multiple compressed files based on the maximum size you selected.
Newer operating systems (Windows 10, macOS) can support files larger than 4 GB.
Tap Create export and let Google archive and compress your music library.
You will receive an email with a download link when it’s done.
Hitachi Vantara just unveiled their 2020 HCI (Hyperconverged Infrastructure) portfolio, with updates to the Hitachi Unified Compute Platform (UCP). Here are the details…
Hitachi Vantara : 2020 HCI Portfolio Updates
Hitachi Vantara today unveiled their 2020 HCI (Hyperconverged Infrastructure) portfolio, featuring updates to Hitachi UCP HC and Hitachi UCP RS.
Faster provisioning with new Hitachi UCP Advisor
Certified support for SAP HANA workloads
New Intel Cascade Lake Xenon Refresh processors for increased performance
Enhanced lifecycle management capabilities for non-disruptive upgrades
The updated 2020 Hitachi Vantara HCI solutions unify cloud infrastructure management with interoperability across their customer’s environments, whether they are using traditional storage, HCI-powered hybrid clouds or public clouds.
These new HCI offerings include a scalable and simplified foundation for hybrid clouds, allowing customers to rapidly scale-out, when increased datacenter resources are required.
Unified Cloud Management
Customers have the flexibility to build a cloud infrastructure with seamless workload and data mobility across on-premises and public cloud environments.
Hitachi UCP Advisor accelerates provisioning up to 80% faster compared to previous HCI management tools and reduces management complexity across the environment.
Greater performance, scale and density support IT departments’ ability to rapidly scale data center resources for business-critical applications and lower operational overhead for better TCO.
The updated HCI platforms provide certified support for SAP HANA workloads on HCI. Intel Cascade Lake Refresh Xeon processors increase performance for workload consolidation while avoiding resource contention issues.
Hitachi HCI solutions help reduce CapEx and OpEx overhead with advanced automation and data efficiency technologies.
Everflex from Hitachi Vantara provides simple, elastic and comprehensive acquisition choices for the entire Hitachi Vantara portfolio, including the UCP Family, with consumption-based pricing models that align IT spend with business use and help lower costs by up to 20% with pay-as-you-go pricing.
Customers can also accelerate time to production with pre-validated and optimized bundles and starter packs, including solutions enabling remote work.
2020 Hitachi Vantara HCI Portfolio : Availability
The 2020 Hitachi Unified Compute Platform HC and Hitachi Unified Compute Platform RS are available from Hitachi Vantara and their global network of business partners, with immediate effect.
Google recently introduced Confidential Computing, with Confidential VM as the first product, and it’s powered by 2nd Gen AMD EPYC!
Here’s an overview of Confidential Computing and Confidential VM, and how they leverage the 2nd Gen AMD EPYC processor!
Google Cloud Confidential Computing : What Is It?
Google Cloud encrypts customer data while it’s “at-rest” and “in-transit“. But that data must be decrypted because it can be processed.
Confidential Computing addresses that problem by encrypting data in-use – while it’s being processed. This ensures that data is kept encrypted while in memory and outside the CPU.
Google Cloud Confidential VM, Powered By 2nd Gen AMD EPYC
The first product that Google is unveiling under its Confidential Computing portfolio is Confidential VM, now in beta.
Confidential VM basically adds memory encryption to the existing suite of isolation and sandboxing techniques Google Cloud uses to keep their virtual machines secure and isolated.
This will help customers, especially those in regulated industries, to better protect sensitive data by further isolating their workloads in the cloud.
Google Cloud Confidential VM : Key Features
Powered By 2nd Gen AMD EPYC
Google Cloud Confidential VM runs on N2D series virtual machines powered by the 2nd Gen AMD EPYC processors.
It leverages the Secure Encrypted Virtualisation (SEV) feature in 2nd Gen AMD EPYC processors to keep VM memory encrypted with a dedicated per-VM instance key.
These keys are generated and managed by the AMD Secure Processor inside the EPYC processor, during VM creation and reside only inside the VM – making them inaccessible to Google, or any other virtual machines running on the host.
Your data will stay encrypted while it’s being used, indexed, queried, or trained on. Encryption keys are generated in hardware, per virtual machine and are not exportable.
Confidential VM Performance
Google Cloud worked together with the AMD Cloud Solution team to minimise the performance impact of memory encryption on workloads.
They added support for new OSS drivers (name and gvnic) to handle storage traffic and network traffic with higher throughput than older protocols, thus ensuring that Confidential VM will perform almost as fast as non-confidential VM.
According to Google, transitioning to Confidential VM is easy – all Google Cloud Platform (GCP) workloads can readily run as a Confidential VM whenever you want to.
Available OS Images
In addition to the hardware-based inline memory encryption, Google built Confidential VM on top of Shielded VM, to harden your OS image and verify the integrity of your firmware, kernel binaries and drivers.
Google currently offers images of Ubuntu v18.094, Ubuntu 20.04, Container Optimized OS (COS v81), and RHEL 8.2.
They are currently working with CentOS, Debian and other distributors to offer additional OS images for Confidential VM.
GrabFood has responded officially to the allegations that they are turning off restaurant availability according to commission rates.
We also asked them some questions of our own, and will update the article with their replies when we get them!
GrabFood Restaurant Availability Controversy : What Happened?
In case you missed the recent kerfuffle, Burgertory – a gourmet burger restaurant – recently accused GrabFood of quietly switching off their restaurant’s availability because of their lower commission rate and sales bucket.
Sean Goh, the Managing Director of Grab Malaysia, issued this press release to address those allegations.
First and foremost, we would like to address the misconception: we do not turn off any of our stores / restaurants based on commissions.
Secondly, during rainy days, or when there is a lack of delivery riders in a specific area, we automatically reduce the service distance to ensure that we can maintain our service levels. Once the availability of delivery riders has recovered, our service distance would resume to normal levels. Occasionally, this may result in stores being unavailable in a nearby location, but available in a further location. For example, Customer A may reside in Bangsar but only see restaurants available in PJ, because we have insufficient delivery partners within the Bangsar area at that specific time.
Thirdly, during festive seasons where some of our restaurant partners may be closed, we practice a precautionary ‘temporary pause’ based on feedback from delivery riders who cite that a restaurant is closed despite being available in our app. This is done to ensure we do not disappoint customers who may continue to order from restaurants who have not updated their operating hours especially during the festive season. Such was the case experienced by this specific restaurant partner.
Prior to Raya holiday period, we sent out multiple communications (emails and SMS) to remind our restaurant partners to update operating hours and how to easily reactivate their restaurants in case of a ‘temporary pause’. In this case, we apologise that we were not attentive enough to ensure our partner received and acknowledged our communications.
We also note that information that was provided by our support staff was inaccurate, and apologise for the heartache and impact to our restaurant partner.
In view of the pandemic, we empathise with our merchant partners whose income has been affected due to the lockdown and restricted operating hours, and have had to rely only on delivery services to generate income. We are continuously looking at different initiatives to help drive demand for them, such as our Local Heroes and Grab Small-Biz Relief fund which this specific partner was also a part of, but will strive to balance this with the need to ensure we continue to uphold our highest service level.
We welcome any partner who has any queries on this to reach out to us directly so we can address your concerns.
Our Questions To GrabFood On This Controversy
We took the opportunity to ask GrabFood to clarify some points not covered in their press release. We will update this article with their answers when we get them.
If bad weather or a lack of riders is an issue for a particular area, why was XXX restaurant marked as Unavailable, while other restaurants in the same vicinity are still Available?
Is there a verification protocol for your rider reports? Does GrabFood call the merchant to verify that they are closed, after a rider reports it?
The press release mentioned that GrabFood requested that restaurant partners update their operating hours. Did Burgertory or the other affected partners change their operating hours? If not, wouldn’t the operating hours remain the same?
What is this Temporary Pause you refer to? Why is there a need for it, and what exactly was the procedure to reactivate their restaurant?
The Raya holidays ended on 26 May 2020, but why are they still experiencing these issues?
Is there any reason why GrabFood support staff would claim that availability of a restaurant is based on the commission level, if that was never the case?
If the percentage of commission does not determine availability of the restaurant, does it affect prioritisation or visibility on GrabFood?
Can GrabFood explain to our readers the difference in commission paid by the various restaurants, and what advantage they would have for paying GrabFood more commission, as opposed to less?
Does sales bucket affect store availability? Does it also affect prioritisation or visibility on GrabFood?
There are concerns that the commission levels are too high – some 25% to 35%? Can you tell us the exact commissions, and breakdown of what goes to the riders, and what goes to GrabFood?
First of all, Grab issued an official press release, stressing they do not turn restaurants off based on commission rate, but there was no mention of the sales bucket.
In a Facebook comment, they said that Burgertory was switched off the first time, because a GrabFood rider arrived and found them closed.
However, Burgertory pointed out that they kept Grab updated on their operating hours, and the rider arrived late – after they closed at 8 PM, and they were not alerted to the rider’s report, or that they were being switched off.
Burgertory also posted a separate update, sharing that Grab told them other merchants “has paid campaigns with them, and the difference in the discoverability radius is to help with the campaign ROI“.
GrabFood Discrimination : Bad For Almost Everyone
If what they were told is true, then GrabFood is intentionally turning off visibility to potential customers, in favour of higher profits from their merchants.
They are no longer acting as a neutral platform, but becoming a gatekeeper of sorts, giving those who can pay more, greater access to customers.
This is naturally bad for merchants, who already have to pay rather exorbitant commission – 25% to 35%. With such a discriminatory system, they will be forced to pay more just to stay visible on their platform.
This is also bad for customers, because our choices will be limited to what GrabFood decides makes them more money, not what’s actually available.
They would be essentially deciding who you should order your food from. And limiting you, not to those with better food ratings, but those who can pay them more.
Eventually, food prices will go way up, because merchants have to increase their GrabFood commissions to “stay visible”, and the additional cost will be added to your meals.
It’s not bad for everyone though. As long as customers remain ignorant, restaurants will be “encouraged” to pay GrabFood more money. It will work out great for GrabFood.
Burgertory vs GrabFood : What Happened?
Here are the details of the Burgertory vs GrabFood scandal. It started with a Facebook post by Burgertory on 4 June 2020 :
We are really disappointed and upset with the partnership with GrabFood.
We have been on-boarded to GrabFood for more than a year now, and we have been a cooperating partner.
Not until recently that we found out GrabFood has been very non-transparent in their assignation for restaurants availability in terms of radius.
We have been receiving a lot of complaints from our customers about GrabFood not showing the availability to deliver within reasonable distance, and we thought this is due to GrabFood system that is set to be within a specific distance in each area.
However what triggered the following case was on 26 May 2020, when we were alerted by our staff that GrabFood was unavailable for that day (imagine the sales that we lost, especially during this COVID period whereby businesses are struggling). Our sales from GrabFood on that day is ZERO. Upon checking, we realized other restaurants in same area is available but not us.
Hence we reached out to GrabFood merchant support via live chat and given the response that they off our restaurant availability from the back-end due to differences in commission rate by different restaurants, which means the restaurants which signed higher commission rate with them will get the priority and ‘be available in more places’. And they switched on our availability back after our call.
We were very upset and escalated to the manager. He then gave us another explanation that GrabFood will allow restaurants with larger ‘sales bucket’ to appear in more places. If that’s the case, it’s discrimination against small businesses, or any businesses that have menu selling items with lower price.
We gave feedback to them that this is not acceptable. And the manager promised to get back to us again after discussing with the team. It’s been a week and we hear nothing from them.
Yet it happened again today..! We realized they ‘turned off’ our restaurant again after checking from the app. Hence we wrote a complaint again, and same cycle happened… (same canned response, and they switched back on)
We are deeply disappointed with such partnership relationship. Does this mean that we have to always check if our restaurant has been hidden from the platform? These occurrences have broken the trust, we don’t know when their system will discriminate against us again and only switch back on after we found out and reach out to them each time. This is totally unfair to small and medium businesses.
After the public uproar, GrabFood quickly reached out to them the very next day to “discuss the issue”.
They clarified that Burgertory did not get “switched off” because of their lower commission, but did not explain why some restaurants get “switched off”, while others don’t.
We are truly humbled by the support from many of you and empathy shown by some of the business owners as well. Just want to give a quick update for those who has asked us about any update from GrabFood after the post yesterday:
They have reached out to us this afternoon to further discuss the issue, and clarified that the switch-off wasn’t due to commission factor, though we still don’t know the reason behind why certain restaurants in the same area are switched off unknowingly. We will continue to discuss and provide feedback to their team and hope that this will not happen again.
The reason why we decided to share the experience is to clarify what it might have impacted many of us as small & medium businesses. This is a year like no other and we empathise with all local businesses that are struggling to survive. We’re touched by some the responses we received yesterday, this is the time we strongly feel what brings Malaysians together.
Apart from this, all of us from Burgertory team is really thankful for all the support to our business shown by our community, especially everyone of you, in what are the toughest of times. We always strive to sustain and provide a better F&B experience to all our customers. Hope all of us can stand strong together in unity through this tough times. Stay safe!
Burgertory vs GrabFood : What Are Other Merchants Saying?
Here is a selection of what other merchants posted on their own experiences :
Renee Tan : Happens to my restaurants all the time especially “crunch time”. Suddenly customers calls & dm come flooding our inbox’s asking why does our restaurant appear “offline”?!
Juan Lyn : I’m currently handling a chain of restaurant online delivery support and we are also facing the very same issue with you. The same reasons given above “sales bucket” size. And our ticket size on average is already around RM50.
Voxism Lim : Happens to our outlet as well.. Exactly what happen.. The store beside is always open, where as mine is turned off (unavailable)
Alief Nurudin : My shop Meteora Cafe paid 28% commission to Grab. We NEVER appeared on the app unless you searched for us manually. We have experienced the SAME thing. Suddenly, NOT AVAILABLE.
The Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool has just been released globally, giving you the freedom to move your photos and videos off Facebook!
Find out how to download all of your Facebook photos and videos, or transfer them to a third-party service like Google Photos!
Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool : What Is It?
The Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool is a new feature that was rolled out as part of the Data Transfer Project.
It allows Facebook users to port their data, photos and videos in this case, to other services.
This gives you the freedom to back-up your data, or leave Facebook without worrying about losing the photos and videos you uploaded.
Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool : How To Use It?
Here is a quick pictorial guide on how to use the Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool to download or transfer your photos and videos to a third-party service.
Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool : Step By Step
Here is our step-by-step guide on using the Facebook Photo + Video Transfer Tool :
Go to Facebook settings.
Select Your Facebook Information, and click on the View link.
You will be asked to verify your identity. Key in your Facebook password, and click Continue.
You can now choose to Download Your Information directly, giving you the option of selecting everything from your photos and videos, to your posts, comments, friends, groups, profile information, etc.
Alternatively, you can choose to transfer your data to a third-part service.
Currently only Google Photos is supported, and you are given the option of transferring either your photo or videos to Google Photos.
After clicking Next, you will be asked to key in your Google Photos password, to kickstart the transfer.
Once your Facebook photos / videos have been transferred to Google Photos, you will receive a notification on Facebook, and an email.
Dell Technologies COO and Vice Chairman, Jeff Clarke, reveals his tech predictions for 2020, the start of what Dell Technologies considers as the Next Data Decade!
Jeff Clarke : Tech Predictions For 2020 + Next Data Decade!
It’s hard to believe that we’re heading into the year 2020 – a year that many have marked as a milestone in technology. Autonomous cars lining our streets, virtual assistants predicting our needs and taking our requests, connected and intelligent everything across every industry.
When I stop to think about what has been accomplished over the last decade – it’s quite remarkable. While we don’t have fully autonomous cars zipping back and forth across major freeways with ease, automakers are getting closer to deploying autonomous fleets in the next few years.
Many of the every-day devices, systems and applications we use are connected and intelligent – including healthcare applications, industrial machines and financial systems – forming what is now deemed as “the edge.”
At the root of all that innovation and advancement are massive amounts of data and compute power, and the capacity across edge, cloud and core data center infrastructure to put data through its paces. And with the amount of data coming our way in the next 10 years – we can only imagine what the world around us will look like in 2030, with apps and services we haven’t even thought of yet.
2020 marks the beginning of what we at Dell Technologies are calling the Next Data Decade, and we are no doubt entering this era with new – and rather high – expectations of what technology can make possible for how we live, work and play. So what new breakthroughs and technology trends will set the tone for what’s to come over the next 10 years? Here are my top predictions for the year ahead.
2020 proves it’s time to keep IT simple
We’ve got a lot of data on our hands…big data, meta data, structured and unstructured data – data living in clouds, in devices at the edge, in core data centers…it’s everywhere. But organisations are struggling to ensure the right data is moving to the right place at the right time. They lack data visibility – the ability for IT teams to quickly access and analyse the right data – because there are too many systems and services woven throughout their IT infrastructure. As we kick off 2020, CIOs will make data visibility a top IT imperative because after all, data is what makes the flywheel of innovation spin.
We’ll see organisations accelerate their digital transformation by simplifying and automating their IT infrastructure and consolidating systems and services into holistic solutions that enable more control and clarity. Consistency in architectures, orchestration and service agreements will open new doors for data management – and that ultimately gives data the ability be used as part of AI and Machine Learning to fuel IT automation. And all of that enables better, faster business outcomes that the innovation of the next decade will thrive on.
Cloud co-existence sees rolling thunder
The idea that public and private clouds can and will co-exist becomes a clear reality in 2020. Multi-cloud IT strategies supported by hybrid cloud architectures will play a key role in ensuing organisations have better data management and visibility, while also ensuring that their data remains accessible and secure. In fact, IDC predicted that by 2021, over 90% of enterprises worldwide will rely on a mix of on-premises/dedicated private clouds, several public clouds, and legacy platforms to meet their infrastructure needs.
But private clouds won’t simply exist within the heart of the data center. As 5G and edge deployments continue to rollout, private hybrid clouds will exist at the edge to ensure the real-time visibility and management of data everywhere it lives.
That means organisations will expect more of their cloud and service providers to ensure they can support their hybrid cloud demands across all environments. Further, we’ll see security and data protection become deeply integrated as part of hybrid cloud environments, notably where containers and Kubernetes continue to gain momentum for app development. Bolting security measures onto cloud infrastructure will be a non-starter…it’s got to be inherently built into the fiber of the overall data management strategy edge to core to cloud.
What you get is what you pay
One of the biggest hurdles for IT decision makers driving transformation is resources. CapEx and OpEx can often be limiting factors when trying to plan and predict for compute and consumption needs for the year ahead…never mind the next three-five years. SaaS and cloud consumption models have increased in adoption and popularity, providing organisations with the flexibility to pay for what they use, as they go.
In 2020, flexible consumption and as-a-service options will accelerate rapidly as organisations seize the opportunity to transform into software-defined and cloud-enabled IT. As a result – they’ll be able to choose the right economic model for their business to take advantage of end-to-end IT solutions that enable data mobility and visibility, and crunch even the most intensive AI and Machine Learning workloads when needed.
“The Edge” rapidly expands into the enterprise
The “Edge” continues to evolve – with many working hard to define exactly what it is and where it exists. Once limited to the Internet of Things (IoT), it’s hard to find any systems, applications, services – people and places – that aren’t connected. The edge is emerging in many places and it’s going to expand with enterprise organisations leading the way, delivering the IT infrastructure to support it.
5G connectivity is creating new use cases and possibilities for healthcare, financial services, education and industrial manufacturing. As a result, SD-WAN and software-defined networking solutions become a core thread of a holistic IT infrastructure solution – ensuring massive data workloads can travel at speed – securely – between edge, core and cloud environments. Open networking solutions will prevail over proprietary as organisations recognise the only way to successfully manage and secure data for the long haul requires the flexibility and agility that only open software defined networking can deliver.
Intelligent devices change the way you work and collaborate
PC innovation continues to push new boundaries every year – screens are more immersive and bigger than ever, yet the form factor becomes smaller and thinner. But more and more, it’s what is running at the heart of that PC that is more transformational than ever. Software applications that use AI and machine learning create systems that now know where and when to optimise power and compute based on your usage patterns. With biometrics, PCs know it’s you from the moment you gaze at the screen. And now, AI and machine learning applications are smart enough to give your system the ability to dial up the sound and colour based on the content you’re watching or the game you’re playing.
Over the next year, these advancements in AI and machine learning will turn our PCs into even smarter and more collaborative companions. They’ll have the ability to optimise power and battery life for our most productive moments – and even become self-sufficient machines that can self-heal and self-advocate for repair – reducing the burden on the user and of course, reducing the number of IT incidents filed. That’s a huge increase in happiness and productivity for both the end users and the IT groups that support them.
Innovating with integrity, sourcing sustainably
Sustainable innovation will continue to take center stage, as organisations like ours want to ensure the impact they have in the world doesn’t come with a dangerous one on the planet. Greater investments in reuse and recycling for closed-loop innovation will accelerate – hardware becomes smaller and more efficient and built with recycled and reclaimed goods – minimising eWaste and maximising already existing materials. At Dell Technologies, we met our Legacy of Good 2020 goals ahead of schedule – so we’ve retired them and set new goals for 2030 to recycle an equivalent product for every product a customer buys, lead the circular economy with more than half of all product content being made from recycled or renewable material, and use 100% recycled or renewable material in all packaging.
As we enter the Next Data Decade, I’m optimistic and excited about what the future holds. The steps our customers will take in the next year to get the most out of their data will set forth new breakthroughs in technology that everyone will experience in some way – whether it’s a more powerful device, faster medical treatment, more accessible education, less waste and cleaner air. And before we know it, we’ll be looking forward to what the following 10 years will have in store.
NTT Limited just announced that they will construct their 5th data centre at the NTT Cyberjaya Campus in Malaysia!
Here are the details…
NTT To Build 5th Data Centre In Cyberjaya, Malaysia
As part of their expansion plans, NTT will build their fifth data centre at their Cyberjaya campus in Malaysia. This Tier-4 ready, compact and modular data centre, called CBJ5, is scheduled to be complete in 2020.
Once it comes online, NTT says that it will provide their clients with “a flexible and scalable power and cooling solution coupled with an industry leading Service Level Agreement (SLA) that is the first of its kind in Malaysia.”
This announcement comes after Malaysia’s Budget 2020 was tabled, with a focus on driving economic growth through digital transformation. There will be additional grants and incentives for organisations to digitally transform their businesses.
As such, NTT believes there will be increased demand for their services, which CBJ5 will be ready to fulfil.
“CBJ5 is designed to meet the requirements of hyperscalers and high-end enterprises, especially those that require solid power management capabilities. CBJ5 is able to accommodate progressive power increments and cooling of up to 10kW/rack. This is revolutionary as it will allow our clients to maximize the power resources in their chosen data center,” said Henrick Choo, CEO, Malaysia for NTT Ltd.
NTT Data Centre Capabilities
With CBJ5, NTT aims to become the leading Digital Infrastructure Provider in Malaysia, attracting both domestic and global traffic into its carrier-neutral data centre campus that also includes NTT’s global Tier-1 IP network, Multi-Cloud Connect platform and domestic Internet Exchange.
The NTT Cyberjaya Campus features a high-density fibre network facilitating inter-connection among our clients to create a digital supply chain ecosystem.
Bank Negara Malaysia recently announced a set of guidelines defining Risk Management in Technology (RMiT) for financial institutions, meaning security becomes a crucial consideration as they are now responsible for the safety of the bank’s information infrastructure, systems and data.
NTT will address these new requirements by working together with financial institutions, so they are able to comply to BNM’s guideline. Henrick also stated that security will be heightened as the company grows.
“NTT’s physical data center access control will be increased to safeguard all data center blocks within the NTT Cyberjaya Campus. We will also be introducing smart security technology integrating Visitor Management Systems with facial recognition technology. Essentially, we will double our security cover with the two combined,” he added.
NTT clients are able to choose from multiple architectures from on-premise, to cloud and even multi-cloud. All solutions will come with managed security solutions to offer data protection while minimising business disruptions.
At GTC China 2019, DiDi announced that they will adopt NVIDIA GPUs and AI technologies to develop self-driving cars, as well as their cloud computing solutions.
DiDi Adopts NVIDIA AI + GPUs For Self-Driving Cars!
This announcement comes after DiDi spliced out their autonomous driving unit as an independent company in August 2019.
In their announcement, DiDi confirmed that they will use NVIDIA technologies in both their data centres and onboard their self-driving cars :
NVIDIA GPUs will be used to train machine learning algorithms in the data center
NVIDIA DRIVE will be used for inference in their Level 4 self-driving cars
NVIDIA DRIVE will fuse data from all types of sensors – cameras, LIDAR, radar, etc – and use numerous deep neural networks (DNNs) to understand the surrounding area, so the self-driving car can plan a safe way forward.
Those DNNs (deep neural networks) will require prior training using NVIDIA GPU data centre servers, and machine learning algorithms.
At the Samsung Developer Conference 2019, Samsung and IBM announced a joint platform that leverages Samsung Galaxy devices and IBM cloud technologies to introduce new 5G, AI-powered mobile solutions!
Here is what you need to know about this new Samsung-IBM AI IoT cloud platform, and the 5G AI-powered mobile solutions it’s powering for governments and enterprises.
Samsung – IBM AI IoT Cloud Platform For 5G Mobile Solutions!
Built using IBM Cloud technologies and Samsung Galaxy mobile devices, the new platform will help improve the work environment for employees in high-stress or high-risk occupations.
This will help reduce the risks to these public employees who work in dangerous and high-stress situations. This is critical because nearly 3 million deaths occur each year due to occupational accidents.
This new, unnamed Samsung-IBM platform will help governments and enterprises track their employee’s vitals, including heart rate and physical activity. This will allow them to determine if that employee is in distress and requires help.
The Samsung – IBM AI IoT Cloud Platform In Use
5G mobile solutions based on the new Samsung-IBM AI IoT platform is being piloted by multiple police forces to monitor their health in real-time, and provide situational awareness insights to first responders and their managers.
The platform can track in real time, the safety and wellness indicators of first responders equipped with Samsung Galaxy Watches and Galaxy smartphones with 5G connectivity.
It can instantly alert emergency managers if there is a significant change in the safety parameters, which may indicate the first responder is in danger of a heart attack, heat exhaustion or other life-threatening events.
This allows them to anticipate potential dangers, and quickly send assistance. This should greatly reduce the risk of death and injuries to their employees.
Red Hat just announced that their partners are driving a rising interest for hybrid cloud in the Asia Pacific region.
Here is everything you know about their update on the Red Hat Certified Cloud and Service Providers program!
Red Hat Partners Are Driving APAC Hybrid Cloud Adoption
At Red Hat Forum 2019, Red Hat revealed that there is a rising interest for hybrid cloud in Asia Pacific, driven by an increasing number of cloud and managed service providers joining the Red Hat Certified Cloud and Service Providers program.
The Red Hat Certified Cloud and Service Providers program currently have over 300 cloud, system integrators and managed service providers in Australia, China, Japan, Korea, Singapore, Thailand, The Philippines and Vietnam.
Red Hat shared a list of some APAC cloud and managed service providers that have recently enrolled in the program :
Australia : Bulletproof
China : Shanghai DaoCloud Network, Shanghai Yungoal Infotech
India : Cyfuture India Pvt. Ltd, Netlabs Global IT Services Pvt. Ltd, GAVS Technologies, Kaar Technologies, Sensiple Software Solutions
Japan : BBC Co Ltd, i2ts Inc.
Korea : Codefarm
Singapore : Fujitsu Singapore
Thailand : Internet Thailand Public Company Limited
The Philippines : Micro-D International
Vietnam : Sao Bac Dau Telecom JS
These Red Hat Certified Cloud and Service Providers can gain access and leverage Red Hat solutions like Red Hat Enterprise Linux, Red Hat OpenShift Container Platform and Red Hat OpenStack Platform, to improve operational efficiency and flexibility, as well as expand their hybrid cloud and ISV solutions.
Red Hat Innovation Awards For HLB + Alliance Bank!
Red Hat also announced that the two winners for the Red Hat Innovation Awards 2019 :
Digital Transformation and IT Optimisation : Hong Leong Bank
Digital Transformation and Agile Integration : Alliance Bank
At the Apsara Conference 2019, Alibaba Cloud announced that they will be introducing the 3rd Gen X-Dragon Architecture for their cloud servers!
Here is a quick PRIMER on the new 3rd Gen X-Dragon Architecture!
What Is X-Dragon?
X-Dragon – Shenlong in Chinese – is a proprietary bare metal server architecture developed by Alibaba Cloud for their cloud computing requirements.
Built around a custom X-Dragon MOC card, it delivers what Alibaba Cloud calls Elastic Compute Service (ECS) capability in a bare metal server.
The ECS bare metal instances it offers combine the benefits of bare metal servers, and virtual machines.
For example, it offers direct access to CPU and RAM resources without virtualisation overheads that bare metal servers offer, with the instant deployment and image migration capabilities of virtual machines.
The downsides? ECS bare metal instances, once deployed, cannot be upgraded or downgraded. In addition, if there is a hardware failure, a failover occurs and the data remains stored in the instance’s storage drives.
What’s New In The 3rd Gen X-Dragon Architecture?
Basically – SPEED.
According to Alibaba Cloud, the 3rd Gen X-Dragon architecture is able to increase Queries Per Second (QPS) by 30% and decrease latency by 60% in e-commerce scenarios.
In tandem, they also announced the 6th Gen ECS instance, which delivers a 20% boost in computing power, a 30% reduction in memory latency, and a 70% reduction in storage IO latency.
Not new, but also important is the fact that because it is cloud-native by design, it eliminates power wastage from idle bare metal servers. Alibaba Cloud claims that alone reduces the unit computing cost by 50%.
3rd Gen X-Dragon Architecture Availability
Alibaba Cloud will start rolling out the 3rd Gen X-Dragon architecture upgrade to millions of their cloud servers around the world from 2020 onwards.
Acronis True Image 2020 was just released, and it is the first personal data protection solution to automate the 3-2-1 backup rule!
Here is EVERYTHING you need to know about Acronis True Image 2020!
Acronis True Image 2020
Acronis True Image 2020 is the first major update since True Image 2018 was released two years ago.
With this release, Acronis believes it has successfully addresses all Five Vectors of Cyber Protection – ensuring the safety, accessibility, privacy, authenticity and security of the user’s data (SAPAS).
Like its predecessor, it combines data backup and recovery capabilities, with anti-malware technology. The new release though boasts more than 100 enhancements. Let’s take a look at some of them…
Dual Protection In True Image 2020
Acronis True Image 2020 is the first personal data protection solution to automate the 3-2-1 backup rule.
It will automatically replicate local backups into the cloud, so you will always have an off-site copy for recovery.
After you completed the first backup, the backup and replication process will henceforth occur simultaneously.
True Image 2020 Tray Notifications Center
Acronis True Image 2020 now pushes messages about your data to your desktop tray, so you can easily monitor the status of your backups.
In addition to alerting you to urgent issues that require your response, it will also send you tips on how to enhance your computer’s protection.
Back Up Only On Selected Wi-Fi Networks
You will now have greater control, including the ability to select which Wi-Fi network to transfer your back-ups.
This allows you to avoid costly metered connections, and insecure public networks that could put your data at risk.
Custom Power Management
You will also have control on when your backups will run while you are on battery power. You can :
completely prevent backups whenever you are on battery power,
set a minimum power level for backups to run
Mac Power Nap Backups!
Acronis True Image 2020 will support Power Nap backups. Enable it, and your Mac will backup its data during its Power Nap.
In addition, any changes to your Mac’s data during its Power Nap will be captured in those backups too!
Acronis True Image 2020 Price + Availability
Acronis True Image 2020 is available in three versions, with immediate effect :
Find out what cybersecurity experts from Dimension Data, Cisco and more think about cloud security, cyberattacks and mitigating them.
Dimension Data Expert Panels On Cyberattack Mitigation + Cloud Security
Freda Liu hosted the two expert panels with Cisco, Recorded Future, F5 and Cybersecurity Malaysia and Mark Thomas, Dimension Data’s VP of Cybersecurity.
The two expert panels addressed the chief concerns of their clients, namely on cloud security, and the mitigation of cyberattacks.
Dimension Data Panel #1 : Top Cyberattacks + Mitigation Tips
Enterprises are continuously experiencing cyberattack survey in today’s digital world. Challenges like compliance management, coin mining, web-based attacks, and credential theft have been seen over the past year.
In this session, the Dimension Data panel of experts will provide insights about top cyberattacks and shifting threat landscape. They also discussed best practices and practical measures you can take to bolster your cybersecurity defences.
Dimension Data Panel #2 : Security In The Cloud
Today, cybersecurity leaders’ jobs are made more difficult as the number of areas and ‘things’ that need to be secured is constantly increasing.
Your infrastructure is no longer just physical, it’s cloud, and hybrid too.
What are the people, process and tools you need in place to help improve your organisation’s resilience and embark on the journey to world-class cybersecurity?
But that was not all, as Pat Gelsinger would soon reveal…
Pat Gelsinger Reveals 2019 VMware Strategy + Plans!
VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger comes from a “hardware” background, serving as Intel’s first Chief Technology Officer before taking over as President and CEO of EMC.
A point he makes in his talk about the Superpowers of Tech – Cloud, Mobile, AI/ML and Edge/IoT.
VMware’s vision still focuses on enabling any cloud resource and application, from the past or the present, to work on any device, while improving intrinsic security over time.
The hybrid cloud is the best answer for almost every single workload, because of three “laws” – the laws of physics, the laws of economics, and the laws of the land.
VMware and Dell Technologies are focusing on the hybrid cloud architecture with VxRail as its building block.
To bind together and manage disparate cloud and on-premise solutions with greater visibility, VMware is offering CloudHealth on all VMware Cloud solutions on Amazon, Azure and Google.
VMware is making great investments into Kubernetes as the “middleware for the cloud“.
VMware is partnering with Pivotal to make VMware PKS available as VMware Enterprise PKS, VMware Essential PKS and VMware Cloud PKS.
VMware is also rebuilding their security architecture and products, with AppDefense and vSphere Platinum, giving virtual machines an AI capability to learn the users’ behaviour, as well as end-to-end encryption throughout the network infrastructure.
The newly-announced Dell Unified Workspace leverages VMware’s Workspace ONE unified endpoint management to maintain the user’s devices in good health, while allowing them to seamlessly access any native, SaaS (Software as a Service), or internal application, with a single sign-on from any device.
The 2019 Virtustream Multicloud Survey results was just announced with some interesting insights into the multicloud strategies being employed globally. Here is our quick primer on what the study revealed!
The 2019 Virtustream Multicloud Survey
Virtustream, a Dell Technologies company, commissioned Forrester Consulting to conduct their latest global survey of the multicloud strategy of more than 700 companies globally.
Virtustream commissioned the survey to study the current state of enterprise IT strategies for cloud-based workloads.
The 2019 Virtustream Multicloud Survey Summarised
The survey report, titled Multicloud Drive Mission-Critical Benefits, found that :
almost all (97%) of those companies used multicloud strategies in their mission-critical applications.
two thirds use multiple vendors for mission-critical workloads
multicloud deployments will increase over the next few years, with businesses expanding their multicloud budgets for staffing, investments and training
nearly 90% of companies surveyed will maintain or increase their budget to boost their multicloud deployments
nearly 75% of companies surveyed are using multiple cloud providers for mission-critical applications
nearly 61% of companies surveyed were concerned about security and management of their multicloud strategies.
Benefits Of Multicloud Strategies For Mission-Critical Applications
A majority of business organizations shared that multicloud strategies was used in mission-critical cases that involved customers’ financial data or sales applications.
In fact, the survey found that nearly 75% of business organisations are using about 2-3 cloud providers for business-critical applications.
Among the main benefits of using multicloud strategies were quick and efficient response to business changes and challenges.
An increased performance and savings in operational costs were also counted as additional benefits.
Security + Management Concerns In The 2019 Virtustream Multicloud Survey
Management and deployment of multicloud strategies are complex, which is why many business organisations face issues with its implementation.
Although nearly 61% respondents admit that multicloud strategies complements their own business objectives, there were still concerns of security and management.
Thus, many companies are planning to increase qualified and skilled staff to support their multicloud strategies, and work with cloud vendors with proper expertise and experience.
A host of new Microsoft Azure technologies for developers have been announced at the Microsoft Build 2019 conference, which took place in Seattle. Here is a primer on what they announced!
Microsoft Build 2019 : New Azure Technologies Unveiled!
With nearly 6,000 developers and content creators attending Microsoft Build 2019 in Seattle, Microsoft announced a series of new Azure services like hybrid loud and edge computing to support them. They include advanced technologies such as,
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
IoT (Internet of Things)
Microsoft Build 2019 : New Azure AI Technologies
First of all, they unveiled a new set of Microsoft Azure AI technologies to help developers and data scientists utilize AI as a solution :
Azure Cognitive Services, which iwll enable applications to see, hear, respond, translate, reason and more.
Microsoft will add the “Decision” function to Cognitive Services to help users make decisions through highly specific and customized recommendations.
Azure Search will also be further enhanced with an AI feature.
Microsoft Build 2019 : New Microsoft Azure Machine Learning Innovations
Microsoft Azure Machine Learning has been enhanced with new machine learning innovations designed to simplify the building, training and deployment of machine learning models. They include :
MLOps capabilities with Azure DevOps
Automated ML advancements
Visual machine learning interface
Microsoft Build 2019 : New Edge Computing Solutions
Microsoft also aims to boost edge computing by introducing these new solutions:
Azure SQL Database Edge
IoT Plug and Play
HoloLens 2 Developer Bundle
Unreal Engine 4
Microsoft Build 2019 : Azure Blockchain Service
The Azure Blockchain Workbench, which Microsoft released last year to support development of blockchain applications, has been further enhanced this year with the Azure Blockchain Service.
Azure Blockchain Service is a tool that simplifies the formation and management of consortium blockchain networks so companies only need to focus on app development.
J.P Morgan’s Ethereum platform was introduced by Microsoft as the first ledger available in the Azure Blockchain Service.
One of the biggest stories from Dell Technologies World 2019 was the new Microsoft – Dell partnership. Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella himself joined Michael Dell to talk about it!
The 2019 Microsoft – Dell Partnership
Dell Technologies and Microsoft have been partners for a long time now, but at Dell Technologies World 2019, they announced that they were expanding their partnership in a number of digital transformation solutions.
Let’s take a look at what the components of the 2019 Microsoft – Dell partnership…
Azure VMware Solutions – VMware On Azure!
For the first time ever, Microsoft will offer VMware on Azure! The new Azure VMware Solutions are built on VMware Cloud Foundation, and deployed in Azure.
This would allow companies to capitalise on VMware’s trusted cloud infrastructure and the mission-critical performance of Microsoft Azure.
Hybrid Cloud Connectivity
With Azure VMware Solutions, customers will be able to seamlessly migrate, extend and run existing VMware workloads from on-premises environments to Microsoft Azure without the need to re-architect applications or retool operations.
They will also be able to build, run, manage, and secure new and existing applications across VMware environments and Microsoft Azure, while extending a single model for operations based on established tools, skills and processes as part of a hybrid cloud strategy.
Tapping Into Azure Capabilities
Azure VMware Solutions enable organisations to tap into Azure’s scale, security and fast provisioning cycles to innovate and modernise applications while also improving performance.
By integrating with native Azure services, customers can easily infuse advanced capabilities like AI, Machine Learning, and IoT into their applications enabling new, intelligent experiences.
Azure VMware Solutions are first-party services from Microsoft developed in collaboration with VMware Cloud Verified partners CloudSimple and Virtustream (a Dell Technologies company).
Both CloudSimple and Virtustream run the latest VMware software-defined data center technology.
This ensures that customers enjoy the same benefits of a consistent infrastructure and consistent operations in the cloud as they achieve in their own physical data center, while allowing customers to also access the capabilities of Microsoft Azure.
New Microsoft – Dell Workspace Solutions
The 2019 Microsoft – Dell partnership also sees a collaboration in digital workspace solutions between Microsoft and both Dell Technologies and VMware.
Microsoft 365 + VMware Workspace ONE
Customers who use both Microsoft 365 and VMware Workspace ONE will now be able to leverage both solutions to maximise their investments.
Specifically, they will be able to use Workspace ONE to manage and secure Office 365 across devices through cloud-based integration with Microsoft Intune and Azure Active Directory.
Dell Provisioning Services Integration
Through the new Dell Technologies Unified Workspace, customers can leverage the integration of Microsoft Windows Autopilot and Dell Device Provisioning and Deployment Services, like Dell ProDeploy – all enabled by the integration of Microsoft 365, Workspace ONE, and Dell Provisioning Services.
Windows Virtual Desktop
Microsoft also announced Windows Virtual Desktop, the only service that delivers a multi-session Windows 10 experience, optimisations for Office 365 ProPlus, and support for Windows Server Remote Desktop Services (RDS) desktops and apps.
As a part of this agreement, VMware will extend the capabilities of Microsoft Windows Virtual Desktop to enable customers to further accelerate their cloud initiatives, leveraging VMware Horizon Cloud on Microsoft Azure.
Initial capabilities are expected to be available as a tech preview by the end of calendar year 2019.
VMware + Azure Integration
Microsoft and VMware are also exploring initiatives to drive further integration between VMware infrastructure and Azure such as integration of VMware NSX with Azure Networking and integration of specific Azure services with VMware management solutions.
They will also be exploring bringing specific Azure services to the VMware on-premises customers. Through this collaboration, the companies aim to give customers a more seamless experience across VMware and Azure environments.
Secureworks just launched Red Cloak TDR at Dell Technologies World 2019 in Las Vegas! Here is a primer on the Secureworks Red Cloak TDI cybersecurity service!
SecureWorks Launches Red Cloak TDR
At Dell Technologies World 2019, Secureworks, a Dell Technologies subsidiary, unveiled Red Cloak TDR, their software-as-a-service (SaaS) app that allows companies to securely manage their own cybersecurity measures.
Developed with over 20 years of field experience in cybersecurity, Red Cloak TDR offers a new way for companies to detect, investigate and respond to online threats such as malware, ransomware etc. Unlike other cybersecurity services, it is aided by deep learning, and machine learning.
The AI assistance helps it quickly detect new and unknown online threats, while reducing false alarms. It also helps cybersecurity teams focus on the real or high-risk threats.
How Secureworks Red Cloak TDR Will Transform Cybersecurity
Cybersecurity threats can go undetected for hundreds of days in the gaps and disconnected layers of security products. This is particularly problematic with apps and services that are not updated on a daily or even hourly basis.
Red Cloak TDR Is Cloud-Native
As a cloud-native application, it can be quickly updated after investigations revel a new threat. In addition, the service includes the following features :
Access to Secureworks’ cybersecurity team and network
As a software-as-a-service (SaaS) app, there is no hassle of installing on-site hardware or software system version upgrades. All updates, back-ups and tuning will be covered by the Red Cloak TDR app.
The app does not charge by data consumption like some apps, so users are free to process and manage all the security data they need to protect their organisation. The app is also designed to integrate into the organisation’s own control framework.