Category Archives: Technology

2017 Cloud computing trends

2017 Cloud computing trendsCloud computing has been around for years. However, 2017 is going to be a key year for many fence sitter organizations to start getting real about cloud computing in order to save costs.

The key trends to watch out for include:

The movement of SME (Small and Medium Enterprises) and larger organizations towards public clouds

For many years enterprises have been resisting moving to public clouds citing security and data privacy concerns. Many have tried to setup private clouds of their own. Setting up private clouds is not without significant costs and investment. Therefore, many have not seen the relevant returns since they did not have the scale. 2017 is going to be the inflection point from where many of the enterprises will start moving towards public clouds to save costs while scaling up their operations.

Hyper-converged private clouds

There are still enterprises for whom data privacy and security is a concern to move to a public cloud. They might even go for a hybrid cloud infrastructure. However, to bring the costs down to manage their private clouds, they will start adopting Hyper-Converged Infrastructure Solutions. These solutions help provide public cloud like features including elasticity, high availability, etc. on a slightly lower scale.

Multiple-Cloud Vendor strategy

Many organizations consume Software-as-a-Service from public clouds. Examples include Office 365, SAP Business One, etc. They may take these services from different cloud vendors. As a result, the organizations will need tools and dashboards to manage multiple cloud vendors. This includes incident and asset management.

Cost and Health Monitoring Tool Adoption

Organizations which go for hybrid cloud management will need service broker services which ensure both public and private cloud services are up and running. The service broker will help manage and secure them.

Cloud monitoring as a service (CMaaS) will become popular with organizations to help monitoring health of private and public clouds. CMaaS is integrated with public clouds already including Office365, Salesforce, Google Apps, Microsoft Azure, AWS, etc.

Migration of applications to the cloud

There will be two kinds of migrations to the cloud. One will be the creation of micro services which will be hosted on containers in isolation mode and consumed by other apps. This may be a public micro-service or a private service to use internally.

The other will be hosting of full apps on the cloud as services. Again, these may be for public consumption like SAP Business One or organization specific. Of course, organizations will go through a learning curve and learn that it is better to migrate their applications to take advantage of cloud features instead of moving as is.

Conclusion

2017 will be the tipping year from where the movement to cloud will accelerate. This will lead to new challenges for organizations as they start learning and implementing a cloud based strategy. We will see a plethora of tools that will address the cloud strategy needs. Overall, it will be a major churn for organizations around the world, but a necessary one.

How mobile technology can transform your business?

How mobile technology can transform your businessMobile technology has proved that the world is a very small place. It helps in decreasing the workload by reducing costly paper trails and moving business related activities to digital platforms, which results increase in productivity.

At the start of the 21st century, a good way for businesses to grow and reach out to their customers online was via websites. A decade later, websites have become passé. Mobile technology is opening doors for more opportunities to conduct businesses anywhere at any point in time. Small and medium enterprises (SME) that need to stay lean can benefit from using mobile technology for their internal processes and interfacing with the customers. Below-mentioned are the mobile trends that can help transforming your business.

Mobile Apps for ERP

As a SME, your organization needs to remain lean and nimble. Usually, an ERP is associated with extremely large organizations with very large teams. However, tools like Business One from SAP have mobile apps that let you manage your business from your mobile. Add-ons like SMS alerts by Uneecops can further bring agility to your business by triggering alerts for key events in your process (like low stock, logistics movement, etc.).

Allows you to show than tell

Mobile has enabled you to go more nearer to your customer, which was not possible decades ago. Whether it is making instant payment or tap to see the product details, the mobile technology has made everything an easy-going process.

Not only this, big home ventures like Ikea, seeing how virtual reality is playing a major role in the future of its customers, have started coming up with ideas where its customers can use the mobile technology to plan the layout of their homes and accordingly shop for home furnishings.

Better way of communication

There are various messaging services that not only help you to stay in touch with your staffers but also offer valuable ways to your customers. For example, Slack, which ensures to bring your communication together in one place. It will not be wrong to add Facebook messenger, SnapChat, or WhatsApp that enable a new and more meaningful relationship between your staff as well as your customers.

Things are available on demand

The best example will be Uber, which on a click of a button is right at your doorstep whenever you need it. Online shopping is also helping customers to become more savvy and knowledgeable. The key to business success is getting online, which is increasing day-by-day.

Consumers are becoming accustomed to getting what they want and when they want. This online trend is gradually transforming the businesses and enabling them to adopt mobile technologies to generate more revenues.

Technology is going wireless

Latest trends show that technology is not limited to physical boundaries. Rather it is allowing businesses to function across geographies. You can conduct meetings virtually, enabling employees to stay connected whether they are working remotely or are in the field work.

It is important for businesses to be abreast with the latest technology and create favorable working environment for its employees and easily interact with its present and potential customers.

Conclusion

As a SME, if you pick up the right mobile technology for your business to stay connected on a more personal way with your customers and your employees, then sky is the limit. Future success of your business is dependent on this relationship and the ability to speak to them in a language they understand.

Move On-Premise Workloads to The Cloud Without Losing Any Investment

Move On-Premise Workloads to The Cloud Without Losing Any InvestmentCloud computing’s popularity and adoption among businesses is increasing from a rapid pace. However, despite this pace there’s still a lot of hesitation among enterprises who already have On-Premise solutions. Basically, there’re two major reasons behind this hesitation:

  • The investments that companies have made in On-Premise solutions;
  • The perceived cost of changes involved in migrating from one platform to another.

These two reasons keep enterprises away from migrating to cloud. However, there’re ways in which you can easily migrate to cloud without losing the investment that you’ve made in your existing On-Premise solutions. Let’s have a look at 3 such ways:

#1. Move Specific Operation(s) of Your Business to Cloud with SaaS

If you don’t want to ditch your entire On-Premise infrastructure immediately, you can move specific operations one by one to cloud by utilizing the power of Software as a Service (SaaS). Finance, Sales or any other operation can be transferred to the cloud. You won’t have to buy new hardware, set up a new data center or hire new staff to manage it. It’s something that has been tried by giants like Toshiba even – and it worked without any issues.

#2. Move Certain Functionality of On-Premise Solution to Cloud with PaaS

If moving an entire operation to the cloud is not your cup of tea, you may want to try moving certain functionality of your existing On-Premise solutions to cloud. Any functionality of your existing ERP, CRM or HCM solutions can be moved with Platform as a Service (PaaS) to a cloud-based platform. The data of that functionality can be accessed from the cloud platform by any authorized user with a username and password.

#3. Develop and Test New Solutions with Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS)

Last, but certainly not least, you can utilize cloud to develop new innovative solutions for your business without disrupting the existing processes. You can utilize Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) functionality of cloud solution providers to rent server space as much as you need and for as long as you need. This doesn’t only cost less but also avoids disruption in your daily business operations.

Conclusion

Migrating to cloud isn’t too difficult – even if you have On-Premise solutions implemented recently. You will also not lose anything from your investment by doing so. In fact, moving some of your functions or functionality to the cloud may even help you in getting more out of your On-Premise solutions. Therefore, you should give some serious thought to the cloud.

4 Major Benefits of Cloud For Small Businesses

4 Major Benefits of Cloud For Small BusinessesCloud is not just a buzzword that’s buzzing the industry from last few years. It has transformed businesses of all sizes since its inception, and it’s not some fancy thing meant for large enterprises only. In fact, you’ve a lot to gain from it if you’re a small business. Yes – cloud can help your small business in many ways, and we’re going to look on 4 such ways in this article. Let’s get started:

#1. Focus on More Important Things

If you’re not in the core IT business, there certainly are better things to do for you than managing servers. Technology is a powerful tool for you to manage your business professionally, efficiently and effectively. It’s important, but it’s certainly not as important as some other functions in your business, the functions on which you should be spending the most of your time. Fortunately, cloud based solutions can provide you the power of technology without requiring you to waste time managing servers.

#2. Affordability

Cloud based business solutions can significantly cut your operating costs in many ways. First of all, they cost less upfront. Next, they also don’t require you to have your own hardware. You also don’t need to hire a specialist to implement and operate them. And as a side benefit, their costs also tend to be predictable in almost all cases, so you don’t need to keep calculating as well.

#3. More Security

If you implement all of your business software on premises, you’re responsible to keep it secure and up to date. If anything goes wrong, there’s no one else to claim because you might’ve averted the disaster. On the other hand, if your implementation was in the cloud, it’s the duty of cloud service provider to ensure security of your data. And big names in cloud industry understand this very well – after all, they’ve to cater to a lot of customers. So they do almost everything in their hands to keep their cloud services as up to date, secure and well maintained as possible, which means that your data and services are in secure hands.

#4. Agile Implementation

On premise installations of business software tend to be too technical and time consuming. Cloud, on the other hand, is all about agility. You can be up and running in little to no time.

Conclusion

With all these benefits, there’s rarely no reason to avoid implementing cloud solutions in your business. You should do it as soon as possible to avoid being outdone by your competitors.

Does migration to the Cloud makes any sense for your business?

Does migration to the Cloud makes any sense for your businessThe cloud computing is wiping off the roles of traditional Internet technology departments in organizations. So, the dream of Steve Jobs (late chairman of Apple) is coming true. He said – “I don’t need a hard disk in my computer if I can get to the server faster… carrying around these non-connected computers is byzantine by comparison.” – Steve Jobs, late chairman of Apple (1997)

Why should your business consider moving to the cloud?

Cloud computing is comprised of Software-as-a-Service (SaaS), Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS). These three services help access data, applications, and services over the Internet. The cloud eliminates the barrier of working within office and gives you the ability to work from anywhere.

SaaS

Represents to a method of delivering applications over the Internet. You can access applications directly from your Web browsers. This means that you do not have to invest in buying, installing, maintaining, and updating the hardware or software. The SaaS provider, like SAP takes care of everything and you should always get the latest version of the application.

PaaS

Refers to the cloud platform and tool to help you build and deploy applications on the cloud. You can easily access applications through Web browser, which means that you do not own the responsibility of purchasing and maintaining hardware and software. For example, SAP HANA that consists of the comprehensive qualities to create better and more agile applications in less time.

IaaS

So much of data is poured on daily basis, which has made it difficult for organizations to handle (processing and storage) them in a traditional way, i.e., having hardware and servers within the premises. Cloud computing avails high-performance virtual machines that allow processing of data and storing tons of data.

Not only this, there are products that takes charge of frequent backups (be it daily, weekly, fortnightly, or monthly). You can easily recover from a data loss disaster, without investing in your own backup infrastructure and skills.

Conclusion

Organizations that are not on the cloud have to maintain infrastructure, support staff and related expenses on their own. This works very well if organizations have the scale that can absorb these costs. But your business does not have such a scale, it will save a lot of costs by moving to the cloud at the earliest. You can rely on proven enterprise cloud security and hosting services (such as cloud computing at SAP) and select from a private, public, or hybrid cloud environment.

Upcoming Top Technology Trends in 2017

Upcoming Top Technology Trends in 2017Sometimes, a break from technology can help unlock the creativity inside you! Are you rejuvenated and ready to start exploring the upcoming technology trends for 2017?

Have a glimpse of it and start strategizing! You never know that these trends may help you with loads of ideas on how to use them in your life and make a good start in the New Year.

Smart home and products

Smart and intelligent things are the next big thing! For example, smart home. Smart home is equipped with lighting, heating, air-conditioning, TVs, computers, entertainment systems, security, camera and other electronic devices that can communicate with one another. They can even be operated through remote controls or voice commands at any point in time. Think about Amazon Echo, Google Home, etc. They provide you convenience at all time, regardless of whether you are at home and don’t even require you to be at a computer.

Internet of Things (IOT) will fuel the growth of smart cities

Cities across the world will focus on adoption of smart products like smart street lighting, smart traffic management systems, smart parking lots, etc. All these smart products use IOT to communicate information back to a cloud where this information is analyzed for real time and strategic decisions. Cities will struggle to find budgets, but adoption will continue and will help create data collection that will shape strategies of the next decade

Increased Cloud Adoption

As per the latest trends, these days cloud based technology is in demand. More and more companies are replacing On-Premise services with cloud computing.

Latest study shows that there is going to be an 80/20 plan for the years ahead. Which means that the business leaders expect to migrate 80% of operations to the cloud by 2020. It is going to be a remarkable shift!

Blockchain Technology

How do you feel if you get a secure way to record online transactions? Well, Blockchain can help you in recording all your online transactions. There is no centralized database supervised by an administrator. Blockchain technology involves a decentralized digital ledger recording transactions on ‘N’ number of computers around the world.

This technology is getting lot of attention because it promises two parties to exchange without the oversight or any intermediation from any third party.

Conclusion

You may already be noticing some of these trends. Some of them like Smart Home, Cloud adoption and IOT will become more prevalent. Technologies like Blockchain will get a lot of interest (which means you will hear a lot about it) but will probably not be ready for mainstream in 2017? Which ones do you think are going to impact you the most in 2017?

The Top 5 Technology Trends That Dominated 2016

The Top 5 Technology Trends That Dominated 2016Technology continues to make our lives better as quickly as possible, and this year is no exception. 2016 saw the rise of many new tech trends, and now when this year is about to end we thought that it’ll be good to take a look at top 5 of them. Let’s do that:

#1. Live Streaming

What started with a single app called Periscope has now evolved into a new way of communication. Live streaming is no more a complicated procedure requiring extra technical expertise and services like Facebook Live, Twitch and Periscope have put its power in the hands of everyone. Riding on the wave of increasing smartphone penetration and better internet connections these services are growing in popularity from a steady pace. And people are using them for many different purposes.

#2. VR and AR

Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality have been the buzzwords of all time during 2016. With companies like Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Samsung, Lenovo and many others investing heaps of money in them they’ve started to become more and more popular in the mainstream. There are many applications of them, some of which include more immersive entertainment experiences, better way of learning and a newer way of experiencing things before purchasing them in the showrooms (as shown in demos of Microsoft HoloLens).

#3. AI, ML and Automation

Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning and Automation have changed many industries drastically in this year. While their possibilities have left people around the world in awe, there has also been considerable hue and cry about the jobs being replaced by them. However, despite that AI, ML and Automation are growing continuously, thanks to the clout of tech giants. Just a few months back Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Amazon and IBM announced their “Partnership on AI.” The elite club will collaborate to make AI even smarter and more useful – as quickly as possible.

#4. IoT and Big Data

Internet of Things is also one of the most popular buzzwords in tech community as it has got many interesting applications in home automation (smart homes), supply chains, manufacturing processes, infrastructure management etc. It continued to rise from a steady pace in 2016, and its rise has led to the rise of another technology called Big Data. For businesses and consumers alike these two technologies are growing in importance by the minute.

#5. Bots

Chatting apps got a lot smarter in 2016, with Facebook again leading the game. Within its Messenger app you can now book an Uber, order a Burger from Burger King, see latest news from Wall Street Journal and much more than that. Convenient, isn’t it?

Final Thoughts

So this was our list of top 5 tech trends that dominated this year. Keep checking back for info on more tech trends.

Indian Manufacturing Industry is Ready for a Make Over

Indian Manufacturing Industry is Ready for a Make OverThe Government of India (GOI) is taking certain key steps to increase the manufacturing output from the current 16 per cent to 25 per cent of GDP by 2025.

In addition to a government push, there are other trends that are creating the opportunity for Indian manufacturers to flourish.

Market Size

  • According to the recent study by Mckinsey and Company, the Indian manufacturing industry has the potential to touch US$1 trillion by 2025.
  • It is expected that the manufacturing industry will create up to 90 million domestic jobs by 2025.

Manufacturing Trends

Now a days, technology is contributing towards manufacturing industries and helping it to stay pertinent in these changing times. Following are the key trends that can impact the manufacturing industry.

Adopting ‘SMAC Stack’

SMAC – stands for Social, Mobile, Analytics, and Cloud is creating endless possibilities for the Manufacturing industry. For example,

  • Use of smart devices to enable faster, even instant communication, bringing down the gap between an event and response, which can be critical to keep manufacturing at its maximum efficiency.
  • Social media can be used by manufacturers, specially startups or small-scale manufacturers to reach out to their target audience with much lower investment as compared to traditional means. There are many social platforms, especially those related to crowd-funding that can help manufacturers find customers, who are also willing to invest in their products.
  • Analytics aids management in decision making, especially, in products where telemetric information is captured.
  • Cloud enables any manufacturing in numerous ways including making use of cloud based services to enhance / enable their processes without an upfront prohibitive investment.

Internet-of-Things

Manufacturers are essentially trying to make their products “smart” by putting various sensors, which connect back to the manufacturers’ cloud. Just as an example, imagine, the sensors in your air conditioner track when it needs servicing and relays that information to you via the manufacturer’s cloud.

Government driven impetus

This impetus is being created in two ways:

  • Products that are purchased through government funding. For example, purchase defense equipment, infrastructure equipment for roads, railroads, etc. For such products, the GOI is inviting foreign companies to invest and setup at least part of the manufacturing units in India if they want to win the contracts.
  • Consumer demand driven products, such as smart phones, automobiles, solar panels, etc. For such products, the GOI is framing policies to make it more viable for foreign manufacturers to set up local units or partner with Indian companies and manufacture in India itself.

Conclusion

Indian Manufacturing is ready for a makeover because India has the necessary manpower, support from GOI via its ‘Make in India’ initiative as well as adoption of SMAC and IOT. The manufacturing industry is expected to grow at a healthy pace as well as modernize towards hi-tech product manufacturing.

Cloud Vs. On-Premise: Which Is Better For your Business?

Cloud Vs. On-Premise: Which Is Better For your Business?Cloud or On-Premise? The decision depends on your requirements. Latest trends show that the cloud is in demand these days, with more and more companies replacing On-Premise services with cloud computing. Solutions for CRM, ERP, and more are now available through the cloud, though some companies still favor On-Premise software and storage. The decision to choose either On-Premise or Cloud depends on your business needs.

Following key considerations may affect your decision to select On-Premise or the Cloud.

Security

It is very important to protect sensitive information that companies cannot afford to be leaked out of their premises. In cloud computing, documents and files can be accessed from anywhere through the cloud, and many businesses assume that there are increased opportunities for anyone to access information. Fortunately, cloud security can be increased if there is proper authentication and administrative privileges. If you have selected well-supported cloud solution, then you can get access to 27*7 support, so if security is compromised, the provider’s support team will take immediate action as compare to the traditional IT in an On-Premise situation.

In case of On-Premise, the servers are installed within the premises, which lead to more secured zone for confidential information. Companies can have custom levels of security at different network levels which is not feasible with cloud based system. Having a dedicated team to trust in-house may be preferable to outsourcing security as compare to the third-party vendors. Frequent updates of On-Premise firmware and hardware will protect you against attacks.

Maintenance

Maintenance includes installation and support cost. The initial installation cost of cloud solution is low. There is no hardware or equipment that is required to be built or installed. Also, cloud solutions do not require dedicated in-house IT department because support is usually taken care of by the vendor. The cloud solutions require recurring fees (like monthly or yearly) to subscribe to the vendor’s services. Cloud solution totally depends on the concept of the more you pay the more you get.

On-premise solutions requires investment in hardware and significant physical storage space. In most of the cases, systems are not usually need to be replaced for several years. It requires one-time investment, which is preferable for some than paying for services on time-basis. The installation can be complicated and time-consuming, which require you to hire external contractors. There are some additional costs involved, like support from IT department, electricity bill if systems need to kept running around the clock.

Conclusion

Ultimately it boils down to balancing between cost of operations and data security. The other factors to be taken into consideration can be access and customization. The choice between the two solutions is a big decision that can affect your organization.

How is Technology Revolution Changing the Indian Logistics Industry?

How is Technology Revolution Changing the Indian Logistics Industry“Logistics is the process of planning, implementing, and controlling the efficient, effective flow and storage of goods, services, and related information from point of origin to point of consumption for the purpose of conforming to customer requirements.”

Logistics bridges the gap between manufacturers and customers. While India has the potential of tens of billions of dollars’ worth e-commerce transactions every year, it depends a lot on how efficient and quick the logistics are. The cost of logistics needs to be minimum due to razor thin margins. At the same time, the lesser the gap between a customer placing an order and receiving the product, the closer the experience to brick and mortar models.

The rise of internet-based E-Commerce Giants

India has the world’s largest potential E-Commerce customer base via the mobile penetration and the sheer magnitude of its population. It is no surprise, that big E-Commerce portals are being set up in India as well as foreign companies are setting up their base in India. Billions of dollars are being poured in every year. As a natural process, these companies are setting up web portals, mobile apps to reach out to every potential customer.

The use of Automation in Warehouses

E-Commerce volume in India is already in billions of dollars. On certain days when any E-Commerce giant decides to launch a special scheme to sell products at discounted rates, the sales from a single day alone are in multiples of billions of dollars. To support such high quantity sales, these giants are bringing in rapid innovation via use of warehousing software and devices to make the most efficient use of time. Although, in India labor costs are pretty low, but, the systems are in place to bring in robotics if required. This, however, may not happen for a very long time.

The use of internet-based Apps for Tracking and Managing Logistics

Internet-based Apps are used for tracking and managing logistics. Products are tracked from the time they leave the warehouse to the time they are delivered to the customer. While this brings in a lot of transparency, it also enables data collection used for analysis using Business Intelligence tools. The analysis is critical to identify bottlenecks in logistics and taking action to eliminate them.

Introduction of Mobile Internet at 4G speed across the country

Accessing apps in rural areas was a pain until recent times, most of the country’s ISPs rolled out 4G-connectivity. This will help more real time inputs and change the way logistics is planned.

Online and Mobile payments

A major portion of the logistics in India is cash-on-delivery. However, with the Government emphasis on use of cashless options, mobile payments and online payments will rise. This reduces the burden on logistics personal to handle cash and makes them more focused on delivering packages.

Use of RFID and similar technologies to automatically collect tolls and reduce the wait times

In a very recent announcement, the Government has asked the ministry of transportation to initiate the process of private and commercial vehicles to have toll collection chips installed in the vehicles that can be configured. This will help reduce the wait times for toll collection in a lot of areas for products that are moved to and from warehouses via road transport.

Conclusion

Logistics throughout the world is undergoing technological revolution. India is no exception. However, in India the revolution is also mindful of the fact that it has a large labor force that is available for work at a very low cost. The use of technology in India will have a different perspective than that of countries with much smaller population and higher cost of labor.