Telecoms & ITC
Saudi Arabia 'to spend $13 billion on IT in two years'
With companies in Saudi Arabia expected to invest $13 billion in hardware, software, expertise and infrastructure in the next two years, the Kingdom appears ready to make an unprecedented technological leap. In fact analysts believe that by 2014, 35 percent of global organization IT budgets will be spent on cloud services. "The importance of cloud computing solutions for us came from the e-Government initiative we need to align with. But cloud computing is definitely the key to the future of the Kingdom's IT modernization plan - and the biggest benefit of cloud-based infrastructure is IT resource sharing," said Dr. Ayman Fayoumi, Vice Dean for IT at King Abdulaziz University. A survey of CIOs by Gartner's Executive Programs reveals that enterprises in the Middle East and Africa are increasing IT spending with CIO IT budgets expected to grow by 14.3 percent this year. Areas of priority for the Kingdom are seen as cloud computing, virtualization and e-Government. Against this backdrop, the Kingdom Cloud Computing Summit, slated to be held on April 22-23 in Riyadh, is hosting key international and regional leaders to discuss this and other key cloud-related topics. Presented by French business information group naseba, it also aims to share best practices and educate the public and private sectors about the benefits of the cloud. Fayoumi further said: "The main challenge we are currently facing is designing a dynamic roadmap (for cloud implementation). However, the Saudi Arabian government is doing a productive job helping us to implement cloud computing solutions. A very important aspect for every IT professional is knowledge sharing amongst other CIOs, CTOs and IT managers. That's the reason I decided to participate at the upcoming Kingdom Cloud Computing Summit." A recent study by Hewlett Packard and Coleman Research Group said 85 percent of Saudi companies are expected to adopt cloud technologies during 2012. The government's commitment is evident across all public organizations throughout the Kingdom, and this presents a new challenge for all IT professionals. Nicholas Watson, Managing Director at naseba, said: "The Saudi Arabian market is remarkable in its growth potential, scope and readiness to innovate. Participation from regional experts and leading solution providers only enhances the technologically advanced nature of the summit - and will ultimately benefit the Kingdom by introducing the very best expertise."
UK Firm's $133 million deal for Doha airport security
Smiths Detection, part of global technology business Smiths Group, said on Tuesday it has won a contract worth more than €100m ($133m) to supply all the main security scanning systems at the New Doha International Airport in Qatar. The order to equip one of the world's most advanced airports includes a range of automatic x-ray and trace detection systems to screen passengers, hand luggage and checked-in bags for explosives, weapons and contraband. It is the biggest single-airport contract that London-listed Smiths Detection has ever won, the company said in a statement. Mal Maginnis, Smiths Detection's president, said: "We are very proud to play a central role in such an important transport hub in one of the world's most dynamic regions." The first expansion phase of NDIA, which will be 12 times the size of the old Doha facility, is due to be completed in early 2013. The new airport will eventually be able to handle 24 million passengers and two million tons of cargo a year. The equipment to be supplied to NDIA includes HI-SCAN 10080 EDX-2is, HI-SCAN 130100T, HI-SCAN 7555aTix including iLane Systems and the 500DT trace detectors. Deliveries are already under way, the statement added. Smiths Detection offers advanced security solutions in civil and military markets worldwide. Smiths Group employs around 23,000 people in more than 50 countries.
Source: Arabian Business
Cloud demand "to grow 10-fold in 10 years"
The dormant demand for cloud storage is already between 2-5 terabytes of data, and it will likely increase by a factor of 10 within the next 10 years, said an industry expert. “Merely synchronizing the many devices each household owns will become hopelessly impractical,” added Bahjat El-Darwiche, partner with Booz & Company, a leading global management consulting firm. “If that exponential growth continues, consumers will seek one of two solutions: keeping files on devices at home, with all the cost and complexity of maintaining the necessary hardware, or moving them to outside, cloud-based servers, which would be easier to maintain, and probably more cost-effective.” Business and consumer interest in cloud IT services has increased over the past year, he pointed out. Despite the occasional security and continuity setbacks, cloud IT offerings—whether through publicly accessible services, privately gated services, or hybrids—are on the rise, particularly for corporate customers. On the consumer side, this development has just begun. Companies are creating more and more services—some as simple as basic file storage—to satisfy the rising demand from residential customers for cloud services. Most prominently, Apple recently launched its iCloud offering with a huge burst of marketing. These efforts are geared toward meeting consumers’ rising demand for space to store and share their growing amounts of data and to be able to access that data across an ever wider variety of devices. Most smartphones currently provide 16 to 64 gigabytes of data storage, enough to hold the great majority of most consumers’ music, pictures, and application data, along with a reasonable number of video clips. As the amount of content owned by consumers continues to multiply, their storage demands will also grow, as will the storage capacity of their devices. By 2020, individual smartphones will most likely offer as much as several hundred gigabytes of storage. Unsurprisingly, consumers are already demanding the right to consume all of their media across all of their devices, from anywhere and as seamlessly as possible. But the sheer amount of data they hope to store and share will make it increasingly difficult to maintain identical sets of data across all devices. In the long run, the only viable alternative will be the cloud—both for storing all this data and for making it available on the many devices on which people expect to be able to access it, from anywhere, at any time. To be sure, the cloud solution requires that a broadband network is available and that the data can be stored on a reasonably reliable and secure cloud service. But that’s exactly where the opportunity for telecom operators lays, El-Darwiche said. Given the level of demand, and the sheer volume of data that will need to be stored and sent around, the market for low-cost consumer cloud storage will explode in the next several years, he said.
Source: TradeArabia News Service
Tata Communications completes first wholly owned cable network ring
Tata Communications, a leading provider of The New World of Communications, yesterday announces the completion of the world's first round-the-world fiber optic cable network with the official launch of its Tata Global Network - Eurasia (TGN-EA) cable. The cable connects Europe to India, through Egypt, bringing increased capacity, resilience and enhanced communications links to not only the Middle East, but to the rest of the world. The completion of the final link across Egypt enables Tata Communications to offer its customers unique access to a wholly-owned express route cable from Europe to India with improved latency, redundancy and scalability. In conjunction with the company's recently launched TGN-Gulf these routes will cater to the increasing demand for voice, video and data services in and out of the Gulf region. Vinod Kumar, Managing Director and CEO, Tata Communications, says, "Our customers, whether a European auto-manufacturer, an Asian hotel group or a large US financial services firm, need to compete in global markets and are demanding faster and more reliable worldwide connectivity. Companies and carriers in developed and emerging economies require the confidence and security delivered by a wholly-owned network such as Tata Communications' TGN." The round-the-world ring also offers city-to-city connections in contrast to more traditional networks which only link cable landing stations. This approach is more cost-effective, flexible and provides a faster time to market delivery, as well as being easier to maintain and manage. The completion of the final TGN-EA link follows significant investment from Tata Communications in its global network in recent years. The TGN-EA cable system now interconnects Europe, India, the Gulf and Middle East seamlessly with the rest of the world while consistently providing higher quality bandwidth on a global scale. Tata Communications owns and operates the world's largest subsea cable network which reaches countries representing 99.7 per cent of the world's GDP. 'This a landmark moment for Tata Communications as we officially launch the world's first wholly-owned global submarine cable network as a complete and robust ring around the world.' concludes Kumar. The 9,280 km TGN-EA system which links Europe and India, running across the Mediterranean and the Middle East, uses fiber-optic technology based on microscopic glass fiber as thin as a strand of human hair, and offers customers the lowest levels of latency with RTD around 92 msec with speeds from 2Mbit/s to 10Gbit/s available. Today's announcement together with Tata Communications' recent global technology association launch with Formula 1 and its public commitment to drive cross-network video collaboration through the Global Meeting Alliance(tm) all complement and further strengthen Tata Communications' vision to deliver a New World of Communications to advance the reach and leadership of its customers across the globe.
Source: Kuwait Times