ARLINGTON, Va., Nov. 24, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The Air Force Association today announced that Facebook, the world’s leading social media website, has partnered with CyberPatriot – The National Youth Cyber Education Program. “We are particularly pleased to gain the support…
1) What are the key challenges facing monetization of IoT?
Firstly, there is the initial challenge of absorbing the massive data IoT devices are expected to generate, which is necessary for accurate analytics of a customer base and wise go to market strategies. Secondly, the mind-set of the IoT world remains largely centered on the devices themselves, despite the fact that the real monetary value lies in the recurring service potential those devices are enabled; it’s the old hardware vs. software mind-set clash all over again, and getting people’s minds attuned to focusing on the services rather than the devices is still a challenge.
2) What is the potential from the monetization of IoT?
It’s astronomical. The commoditization via Mohr’s law of the underlying technologies that are making IoT a reality is happening at the same time that many markets and businesses are adopting recurring revenue business models, and IoT services lend themselves quite naturally to a recurring revenue business model. It’s a perfect storm and Aria’s thrilled to find itself in the middle of it. With IoT-enabled devices expected to hit 50 billion in 15 years, and with recurring revenue business models being adopted at an accelerating rate, it’s a pretty obvious place to want your business to be.
3) At what speed is the monetization of IoT growing?
It’s happening today, but it’s still relatively slow. Despite studies that say 40-50% of enterprises are already embarked on some kind of IoT strategy, my anecdotal experience says it’s far lower than that in truth. Most enterprises are talking about it, but so far few are doing much that’s material.
4) What sectors/industries are best placed to take advantage?
Connected cars, home automation and security, and wearables are the prime movers today. But I’d say that healthcare as a sector is probably the one that is the most ripe to take advantage of IoT capability. The same could be said for utilities. Unfortunately, healthcare and utilities are two sectors that are notoriously slow to move, so it’s not surprising that, despite the promise IoT holds for those sectors, there isn’t massive movement in either of them just yet.
5) How did Aria become a leader? When did you recognize the potential?
Among Aria’s enterprise customers are IoT services in the automotive, home security, and healthcare industries. We built our system to be able to handle the far more complex world of usage/consumption billing (in addition to the far simpler subscription billing model), and that capability was a primary reason for being selected as a vendor by the companies I’m referencing. If we know one thing about IoT, it’s that it produces a huge amount of data about the customers using those devices and you can’t effectively monetize for the customers without being able to manage that data.
Stay tuned for part two of our interview with Brendan later this week.
Happy Singles Day – Apple’s potential slice of The Biggest Shopping Day on Earth It is easy to anticipate that the busiest shopping day of the year is quickly approaching, but in fact it has
already passed. November 11 was Singles Day, celebrated in China and by Chinese people worldwide, in which single people hold parties, give gifts, and splurge on themselves. The date is made symbolic, as in “four ones,” representing four single people getting together for a dinner.
Although Singles Day has existed since the early 1990’s, it has grown to enormous commercial prominence in recent years due to online ecommerce, and with global behemoth Alibaba now leading the social media/ecommerce herd, the numbers are becoming truly historic.
According to Wired.com, “Alibaba revealed this year’s Singles’ Day haul: 57.1 billion yuan, or $9.34 billion. The company also announced that it had shipped 278 million orders, with close to half—43 percent—placed from mobile devices.” This makes the U.S. online Black Friday numbers ($5.29 billion in 2013 for all online companies) pale by comparison. Contributing to the success of this year’s Singles Day haul was the active participation of many internationally recognized brands, including Calvin Klein, Costco, and American Eagle.
Singles Day puts the fast-growing Chinese consumer market into the world’s spotlight. When Alibaba went public in September 2014, the company immediately became bigger than Facebook, Amazon, IBM,and Intel. It is now setting its sights more squarely on how consumers will pay for all the goods they buy.
In an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Alibaba Executive Vice Chairman Joseph Tsai discussed his company’s discussions with Apple, in which it would play a central, but not exclusive role in processing online purchases through its Apple Pay service. Due to regulatory requirements and restrictions, Apple would team up with Alibaba’s own Alipay electronic payment system to complete the financial circuit.
With 300 million active shoppers in China, the stakes are very high for companies such as Apple, as well as retailers such as Costco to become part of a new and very large frontier of commerce. More and more Chinese people are becoming affluent enough and connected enough to want to buy, and Alibaba is ready to make this happen. As Mr. Tsai points out, “I think we [Alibaba] are very well positioned because e-commerce penetration in China is still very low. We define our addressable market as total consumption in China, a $3.4 trillion economy. And there’s only 9% penetration of e-commerce into that. So there’s a lot of room to grow, just in terms of growing the penetration. We’ve got 300 million active shoppers on our platform, but that’s only half of China’s Internet population, and only a quarter of the total population. We are fortunate to have that macroeconomic tailwind behind us. And the rest is execution.”
Different workloads perform differently on different cloud service providers. Enough so that it is prudent in planning to consider the optimal configuration and the optimal CSP for your solution. Consider this old word problem from years ago. One person can carry two buckets of water. It takes 5 minutes to fill the buckets and 5 minutes for one person to carry the buckets, empty the bucket and return to the well to get more water. The unit of work is one person and 10 minutes to move two buckets of water. If you have two people operating and assume they talk more because there is two of them let’s say, two people can move four buckets of water in 10 minutes and 30 seconds.
When will the two person team be ahead of the one person team in terms of units of work? It occurs by the 2nd trip or 30 minutes (8 buckets versus 4). Now you can in the end speed up the process in the wrong way (such as having a person filling the buckets for the person when they return from each round trip). But like CSP’s we have many options. The first and most immediate way to speed things up is to have two people moving the water. The next quickest way is to have more than four buckets and having a third person fill the buckets while the other two are walking. Of course, we can also have many more buckets and many more people to move this along even faster.
All of these are considerations in building out your cloud portfolio. For solutions that require speed and throughput you may select a different CSP than for solutions that require ubiquitous access (network and device), but don’t require speed. One of your selection criteria should be the value of the above equation. How much water does your workload need to move?
The Reality of Security
The next consideration is the reality of security. All the CSP’s I’ve worked with actually leverage a different security model. They all report issues the same way, but they use a different model both for evaluation of threats and protection of that. The more CSP’s you have, the greater your risk of missing something from a security perspective. This may be the single “why a cloud broker?” argument. The broker would connect to your enterprise and from there would abstract the cloud services you were connecting to. They may provide identity management services, and they will provide a unified security POS (Point-of-Sale).
Eventually, as the tools play catchup, the broker may even provide the great white whale of portability. The broker is giving you the ability to move your solution effortlessly between Cloud Service Providers without disruption of service or productive time lost.
With a broker, you can change the equation above. First off the broker will give you the ability to connect directly to the well without having people moving the buckets of water. So now you can pump water from the broker at a much faster rate. Secondly the security of the water is increased as it is under your partner’s control (broker) or your control longer. Finally, the broker gives you the ability to move your water source (eventually when the tools catchup) without having to dig a new well.
Cloud Diversification Strategies
Many analysts project that organizations will have more than one cloud and more than one type of cloud going forward. Hybrid Cloud represents a mix of one or more cloud types and one or more cloud providers.
When customers ask me, I always tell them one thing. Every CSP you connect requires three distinct connections
Security Operations and Monitoring
In the end a Hybrid Cloud solution that supports a private cloud solution, and two or more public cloud solutions would have three of each of the connections above. Or if you implement a cloud broker one connection for each – and you can continue to add CSP’s forever without making more connections.
It’s why in the end Cloud Brokers make sense. Please excuse me for a moment while I go back to bailing the water out of my basement.
It is a well-known fact in the business of marketing a product that to get a customer’s attention you must do one or all of the following:
first make it clear that without this product a customer stands to lose out somehow;
second make it clear this product is better than anything that has preceded it;
third, make it clear that this product will save money, make money or make the customer somehow more attractive;
fourth, make it clear that this product is better than any competitors’ products;
fifth, make it clear that if the customer does not buy now, the opportunity will pass them by; and
sixth, make it appear that your product is actually new and improved, even if it isn’t.
This last item might be the most troubling of all, since it tends to take a customer’s credulity along for a ride. Terms such as “green,” “no trans-fats,” “better mileage,” “calorie-reduced,” or “redesigned from the ground up,” lead customers to believe what they truly want to believe, regardless of actual details.
This phenomenon is not restricted to consumer goods; it also exists in the cloud industry, where confusion over terms such as public cloud, private cloud, hybrid cloud and managed cloud, clash with customers’ inherent fears over security, data loss and uptime, inside of which less scrupulous IT vendors can operate without challenge.
In the bricks and mortar world, an intentional misrepresentation of a product by glossing up the exterior is often called whitewashing, and subsequently that same activity in the virtual world has been given the term cloudwashing.
The term hybrid, for example, has become the catch-all term that many vendors use to persuade customers that their data will move between private and public clouds seamlessly, but according to many in the cloud business, it just doesn’t happen like that. Simply re-branding an existing service by slapping the term “cloud” or “hybrid” in front of it is not close enough.
It is important that IT professionals get their terminologies straight, when contemplating a move to the cloud. Many times, what appears to be a move to the cloud turns out to be simply outsourcing to another storage company. To truly be cloud based, there must be multi-tenant architecture, virtualization and scalability, so that the client can capitalize on the use of a dynamic system that moves and flexes with the company’s particular needs. Multi-tenancy means you are one of many customers sharing the up-to-date resources of a cloud provider.
Terence Ngai, Head of Cloud Delivery Management at Hewlett-Packard, agrees. “No wonder customers are confused,” he states, “many vendors in the cloud market are deliberately applying terms like ‘hybrid’ and ‘open’ loosely to describe their offerings. When you read the fine prints of their collaterals, you might find different definitions of the terms they use. Some vendors will describe their on-premises and off-premises offerings as hybrid while they are completely isolated with no interoperability between those offerings. Customers cannot have one service running on-premises talking to or exchange data with another service off-premises. Some vendors claim interoperability between their offerings as long as you use their technology stack only. How flexible is that?”
Ngai adds, “The true definition of hybrid is having multiple service delivery models working together as if they are one environment that delivers application interoperability and portability, while supporting multi-vendor technologies. That is how customers can realize the true benefits of hybrid IT – agility, flexibility and no vendor lock-in.”
For a customer to attain true “hybrid cloud,” a good deal of work has to be done, and the right technology has to be installed. There needs to be full cooperation between the on-premises and off-premises systems, and beyond the technology, there must also be clear policies established as to what data goes where.
Sadly, hybrid washing and cloudwashing continue to exist, but just like any other venture, whether commercial or even between individual people, it is very easy for someone who wants to sell something to say what needs to be said in order to make the sale. In the business of cloud technology a great many terms come and go and get intertwined. Ultimately a customer must do the research to seek out vendors and suppliers who can be trusted and who can prove they can be trusted. And on top of that, there must always be a layer of caveat emptor – let the buyer beware.
Google Contributor – Paying Your Way on the Internet
Google wants users to pay for their Internet use, and is offering a convenient way to do so. It announced, on Thursday, November 20 the release of Google Contributor, which asks users to shell out $1, $2 or $3 per month to help support their favorite websites. According to Wired magazine, Google would handle the transaction, take a small cut, and users would be rewarded with a “thank you” banner where the ads used to be.
This pay-for-use service is just one of many attempts that Internet providers and content providers have developed to help pay for the global service, in an attempt to de-emphasize the need for ads and tracking data.
Google’s payment system is currently being tested on a handful of online media magazines including The Onion, ScienceDaily, Urban Dictionary, and Mashable, and arguably represents a new form of paywall – a payment process that itself seems to be proving to be mostly successful.
Cash Payment and Data
The issue of payment or value comes down to two major commodities: cash payment and data, and the race to see which platform works best is still on. Bloomberg Businessweek pointed out that the online subscription (paywall) model tends to attract a different type of reader than the print subscriber, thus not cannibalizing an existing revenue stream. Secondly, the type of data that can be obtained through analytics help publishers curate and customize their offerings more accurately as well as charge higher premiums for the ads that exist, due to more accurate demographic data.
Recently, Canadian publishing giant Torstar announced its plans to tear down the paywall at its largest publication, the Toronto Star, which happens to be Canada’s largest newspaper. This, however, is not an admission of failure regarding the paywall system, but a discovery of a better mousetrap – the mobile tablet app,which promises more stickiness and greater numbers. Working with Montreal’s La Presse+Group, Torstar expects better returns from its tablet app than from the paywall. Quoted in the Huffington post, John Cruickshank, publisher of the Toronto Star and president of the Star Media Group, stated that “La Presse+ had been able to do what most Canadian media companies crave: attract a highly engaged, younger audience who use the tablet app for an average of 45 minutes a day, and up to an hour on Saturdays.”
The Google Contributor program seeks to ease the burden of the production of Internet through something of a crowdsourcing approach, but it faces the same legacy that dealt a near-death blow to the record industry just a few years back: why should people pay for something when they can just as easily get it for free? It will be up to Google to answer that.
In theory, migrating to cloud computing should be easy. Choose a cloud provider, move the files to the data server and everything is good to go. While that may work for the personal cloud, migrating into a business cloud format is a lot more complicated.
As Ann Bednarz pointed out in a CIO.com article, companies are dealing with IT legacy systems that have been in place for years, and this makes switching to a cloud format all the more difficult.
Here are five issues to watch out for when turning to cloud computing:
Complications may arise if organizations don’t take ample time to plan out their migration path and clearly identify their needs. “Complications usually revolve around overly aggressive migration timetables and not having enough time to sync large amounts of data, or not enough cycles being allocated to mapping out the new workflow for employees on the new cloud platform,” said Chris Messer, vice president of technology at Coretelligent.
It’s critical to not attempt to migrate multiple services, data-sets or interconnected and complicated services with a large number of dependencies without careful planning and a clear understanding of how all the services will operate on the new cloud platform, Messer added. “Most cloud migration challenges can be easily avoided by allocating ample time to both the planning and execution and migration phases of the project. Businesses need to ensure that they’re working with an experienced vendor, or that their IT team is leveraging a proven method or product for the migration”
Even though security within the cloud has improved over the past few years, it remains one of the more complicated issues involved with cloud migration. As Asaf Cidon, CEO of Sookasa, pointed out, business owners need to think not just about the security of their data in the cloud, but also the security of the data on the devices accessing the cloud.
A move to the cloud will not magically improve security around your application or service, nor will it automatically maintain the good security controls and procedures you have in place presently. “Your organization needs to bring all the stakeholders to the table and think about what will change and what will remain the same with regard to security,” Hazdra from Neohapsis said. These stakeholders typically include the line-of-business manager, IT application development team leads, your information security team, and potentially representation from legal and compliance teams.
Before the cloud migration even happens, IT departments need to realize a simple fact: employees are already using the cloud. And they are already storing corporate data there. They aren’t waiting for the company to use cloud computing, and the use of Shadow Cloud can great a lot of headaches for IT, Rajiv Gupta, CEO of Skyhigh Networks explains. IT departments need to investigate how their employees are already using the cloud and then work to migrate that use from Shadow Cloud formats into the organization-designated cloud.
Picking the Right Provider
When it comes to cloud computing, the service provider is one of the most important elements. Choose the wrong provider, and it could cost the company thousands of dollars in security-related costs, lost or compromised data, too much down time, and other headaches. According to Stephen Pao, GM of Security Business at Barracuda, before moving to the cloud, IT decision makers need to ask questions such as: What are the agreement service levels and agreement objectives? Are there any additional service charges or hidden fees? Is there a service level objective or does it cost extra to have more services? Read the best cloud reviews. The way to avoid problems is to know what the provider can do for your company – and what it cannot do – before signing any formal agreements.
Flexibility of Infrastructure Choices
One of the best things about the cloud is the number of choices available. One of the worst things about the cloud is the number of choices available. The cloud can actually reduce the amount of flexibility a company has over its infrastructure choices, according to David Hsieh, VP of Marketing at Instart Logic. “Cloud providers offer a menu of choices, but you have to choose from their options — there’s usually no ‘substitutions’ or ‘secret menu’ items you can choose from. This can cause a certain degree of inefficiency because you can’t fully tailor your infrastructure to meet specific needs.”
There will always be some manner of risk involved with migrating business functions to the cloud, but as companies become more reliant on the cloud – especially as mobile access increases – there will be risks with not moving to the cloud, as well.
“It is highly beneficial for all of the teams mentioned above to analyze, assess and present what they view as the benefits and risks so effective business decisions can be made,” said Hazdra. “Cloud migration projects offer an excellent opportunity to review and improve upon the security controls present in your organization.”
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