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New cloud services business emerges from big deal

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EMC and VMWare have announced plans to form a new cloud services business by combining their respective cloud capabilities.

Following Dell’s record-breaking acquisition of EMC Corporation, the storage giant and VMware have announced plans to form a new cloud services business by combining their respective cloud capabilities, along with existing Virtustream cloud offerings, under the Virtustream brand. Virtustream will be jointly owned by VMware and EMC and led by Rodney Rogers, CEO of Virtustream. Virtustream’s financial results will be consolidated into VMware’s financial statements beginning in Q1 2016.

Virtustream is expected to generate multiple hundreds of millions of dollars in recurring revenue in 2016, focused on enterprise-centric cloud services, with an outlook to grow to a multi-billion business over the next several years. Virtustream will be a leader in hybrid cloud, one of the largest markets for IT infrastructure spending. The company will provide a complete spectrum of managed services for on-premises infrastructure and its enterprise-class Infrastructure-as-a-Service platform, enabling customers to move all their applications, including mission-critical applications, to cloud-based IT environments. Virtustream will offer a compatible public cloud experience for customers who deploy the Federation Enterprise Hybrid Cloud solution within their business.

“Through Virtustream, we are addressing the changes in buying patterns and IT cloud operation models that we are seeing in the market. Our customers consistently tell us that they are focused on their IT transformations and journeys to the hybrid cloud. The EMC Federation is now positioned as a complete provider of hybrid cloud offerings,” said Joe Tucci, EMC Corporation Chairman and CEO.

The new business will incorporate and align the cloud capabilities of EMC Information Infrastructure, VCE, Virtustream and VMware to provide the complete spectrum of on- and off- premises offerings including: VMware vCloud Air, VCE Cloud Managed Services, Virtustream’s Infrastructure-as-a-Service, and EMC’s Storage Managed Services and Object Storage Services offerings.

Virtustream will integrate these assets to provide customers with a unified infrastructure-as-a-service offering, designed to support the complete spectrum of business workloads, with a service portfolio that spans a full range of services and deployment options. The business will integrate and extend existing on-premises EMC Federation private cloud deployments into the public cloud, maintaining a common experience for developers, managers, architects and end users. Virtustream’s cloud services will be delivered directly to customers and through partners.

VMware will establish a Cloud Provider Software business unit led by Ajay Patel, VMware senior vice president, focused on delivering cloud software and solutions to cloud providers including VMware’s vCloud Air Network, to help them rapidly harness the opportunity of the hybrid cloud. This new unit will incorporate assets and people from the VMware vCloud Air Application Services business, vCloud Director and vCloud Air Network teams, as well as Virtustream’s Software Business including Advisor Planning and Migration tool, xStream cloud management platform and Viewtrust governance, risk and compliance solution.

Market opportunity

Nearly one-third of all IT infrastructure spending is going to cloud-related technologies, according to a recent 451 Group report1. In addition, the focus of Cloud Services buyers is seen to be shifting up to the application stack. The demand for a simple infrastructure on demand utility is giving way to higher levels of interest in solutions that include integration and management. Enterprise adoption overall is still on the rise with a shift in focus to private & hybrid architectures. The Global ERP market is estimated to reach $41.2B by 20202 with Cloud-based ERP now growing faster than on-premises ERP3.

Executive quotes

Rodney Rogers, Chief Executive Officer, Virtustream

“I am honored and excited to have the opportunity to lead the new Virtustream,” said Rodney Rogers, CEO for Virtustream. “Our vision of combining our IP and collective cloud platform and services capabilities for mission-critical applications, backed by the strength and reach of EMC and VMware will deliver an enterprise-focused hybrid cloud solution that is unrivaled in the market. We expect Virtustream will become one of the top 5 service providers globally and are thrilled about what this means to all of our customers, partners, and the Federation moving forward.”

Pat Gelsinger, Chief Executive Officer, VMware

“The new Virtustream business will feature the industry’s broadest portfolio of hybrid cloud offerings, enabling customers to move all their applications to cloud-based IT environments and seamlessly manage their on-premises and off-premises environments.  We see tremendous growth opportunities for VMware and EMC with the new Virtustream business, building on the strong momentum of vCloud Air.”

David Goulden, Chief Executive Officer, EMC Information Infrastructure

“This is an exciting time for the EMC Federation of businesses, and today’s news is central to our strategy to help customers move all of their applications to the cloud. The new Virtustream business will enable customers to implement a hybrid cloud-based IT environment that incorporates the best of both public and private cloud quickly, and from one source. The Federation Enterprise Hybrid Cloud solution, along with the addition of Virtustream and vCloud Air cloud offerings, will not only offer customers choice and flexibility, but also will help them react quickly to optimise growth and transform their businesses.”

 

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Now download a bank account

Absa has introduced an end-to-end account opening for new customers, through the Absa Banking App, which can be downloaded from the Android and Apple app stores. This follows the launch of the world first ChatBanking on WhatsApp service.

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This “download your account” feature enables new customers to Absa, to open a Cheque account, order their card and start transacting on the Absa Banking App, all within minutes, from anywhere and at any time, by downloading it from the App stores.

“Overall, this new capability is not only expected to enhance the customer’s digital experience, but we expect to leverage this in our branches, bringing digital experiences to the branch environment and making it easier for our customers to join and bank with us regardless of where they may be,” says Aupa Monyatsi, Managing Executive for Virtual Channels at Absa Retail & Business Banking.

“With this innovation comes the need to ensure that the security of our customers is at the heart of our digital experience, this is why the digital onboarding experience for this feature includes a high-quality facial matching check with the Department of Home Affairs to verify the customer’s identity, ensuring that we have the most up to date information of our clients. Security is supremely important for us.”

The new version of the Absa Banking App is now available in the Apple and Android App stores, and anyone with a South African ID can become an Absa customer, by following these simple steps:

  1. Download the Absa App
  2. Choose the account you would like to open
  3. Tell us who you are
  4. To keep you safe, we will verify your cell phone number
  5. Take a selfie, and we will do facial matching with the Department of Home Affairs to confirm you are who you say you are
  6. Tell us where you live
  7. Let us know what you do for a living and your income
  8. Click Apply.

 

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How we use phones to avoid human contact

A recent study by Kaspersky Lab has found that 75% of people pick up their connected device to avoid conversing with another human being.

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Connected devices are becoming essential to keeping people in contact with each other, but for many they are also a much-needed comfort blanket in a variety of social situations when they do not want to interact with others. A recent survey from Kaspersky Lab has confirmed this trend in behaviour after three-quarters of people (75%) admitted they use a device to pretend to be busy when they don’t want to talk to someone else, showing the importance of keeping connected devices protected under all circumstances. 

Imagine you’ve arrived at a bar and you’re waiting for your date. The bar is busy, and people are chatting all around you. What do you do now? Strike up a conversation with someone you don’t know? Grab your phone from your pocket or handbag until your date arrives to keep yourself busy? Why talk to humans or even make eye-contact with someone else when you can stare at your connected device instead?

The truth is, our use of devices is making it much easier to avoid small talk or even be polite to those around us, and new Kaspersky Lab research has found that 72% of people use one when they do not know what to do in a social situation. They are also the ‘go-to’ distraction for people even when they aren’t trying to look busy or avoid someone’s eye. 46% of people admit to using a device just to kill time every day and 44% use it as a daily distraction.

In addition to just being a distraction, devices are also a lifeline to those who would rather not talk directly to another person in day-to-day situations, to complete essential tasks. In fact, nearly a third (31%) of people would prefer to carry out tasks such as ordering a taxi or finding directions to where they need to go via a website and an app, because they find it an easier experience than speaking with another person.

Whether they are helping us avoid direct contact or filling a void in our daily lives, our constant reliance on devices has become a cause for panic when they become unusable. A third (34%) of people worry that they will not be able to entertain themselves if they cannot access a connected device. 12% are even concerned that they won’t be able to pretend to be busy if their device is out of action.

Dmitry Aleshin, VP for Product Marketing, Kaspersky Lab said, “The reliance on connected devices is impacting us in more ways than we could have ever expected. There is no doubt that being connected gives us the freedom to make modern life easier, but devices are also vital to help people get through different and difficult social situations. No matter what your ‘connection crutch’ is, it is essential to make sure your device is online and available when you need it most.”

To ensure your device lifeline is always there and in top health – no matter what the reason or situation – Kaspersky Security Cloud keeps your connection safe and secure:

·         I want to use my device while waiting for a friend – is it secure to access the bar’s Wi-Fi?

With Kaspersky Security Cloud, devices are protected against network threats, even if the user needs to use insecure public Wi-Fi hotspots. This is done through transferring data via an encrypted channel to ensure personal data safety, so users’ devices are protected on any connection.

·         Oh no! I’m bored but my phone’s battery is getting low – what am I going to do?

Users can track their battery level thanks to a countdown of how many minutes are left until their device shuts down in the Kaspersky Security Cloud interface. There is also a wide-range of portable power supplies available to keep device batteries charged while on-the-go.

·         I’ve lost my phone! How will I keep myself entertained now?

Should the unthinkable happen and you lose or have your phone stolen, Kaspersky Security Cloud can track and protect your device from data breaches, for complete peace of mind. Remote lock and locate features ensure your device remains secure until you are reunited.

 

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