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Companies want to run applications in the cloud

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New research from F5 Networks shows most companies are already using a hybrid cloud infrastructure, and are about to use it more operationally.|New research from F5 Networks shows most companies are already using a hybrid cloud infrastructure, and are about to use it more operationally.

More than a fifth of companies surveyed plan on running their applications in a public or private cloud environment – and 80 percent already use a hybrid cloud infrastructure.

These findings from F5 Networks’ State of the Application report were revealed this week at the company’s annual EMEA Agility conference in Barcelona.

The report warned that, with this move to leverage multi-cloud environments, unexpected hurdles often present themselves. Application deployments across multiple cloud platforms create challenges in managing application services; inconsistent security policies create compliance risks; and multiple cloud architectures put more pressure on IT departments, and diminish the return on the cloud’s value.

“Customers are increasingly choosing to deploy applications in multiple clouds — public and private, in colocation facilities, and in their own data centers — but are struggling with the management of different development environments, tool sets, and orchestration technologies,” said Sangeeta Anand, SVP of Product Management and Product Marketing at F5.

“Where these clouds provide services for applications, they often do so in ways that are not portable enough, are use-case specific, or provide inadequate protection. F5’s portfolio of multi-cloud application services and solutions gives customers the freedom to deploy any application—anywhere—with consistent application services and enterprise-grade security.”

He reminded that audience that, in November, F5 shared its vision to power intelligent application services in the cloud with the stability, security, and performance customers expect. Today, the said, the company is building on that foundation with the broad availability of solutions for multi-platform, multi-cloud services that make applications go faster, smarter, and safer.

The following products  were announced at the event, as supplied by F5:

  • F5 BIG-IP Virtual Edition in the Google Cloud means that organizations can now deploy F5 services in all major public clouds. F5 gives customers greater choices of cloud platforms, with new ‘bring your own license’ offers for instances ranging from 25 Mbps to 5 Gbps. Available now from Google Cloud Launcher in Good, Better, and Best versions.
  • Cloud solution templates for Amazon Web Services, Azure, and Google reduce the complexity of deploying F5 services for applications in the public cloud. These new solution-specific templates simplify and automate common public cloud use cases. Cloud solution templates are also available for OpenStack private cloud environments. Available now on GitHub.
  • Integrated marketplace solutions provide easily accessible, pre-packaged F5 services such as WAF and Office 365 federated access that are deployable directly from public cloud marketplaces, meaning companies can leverage their trusted F5 services easily for applications in the cloud. Available now in the Azure Marketplace.
  • A private cloud solution package gets customers up and running quickly with pre-tested, certified, and bundled F5 solutions that simplify and automate OpenStack private cloud deployments. Available now through F5 sales.
  • Lightweight Application Services Proxy gives customers flexibility in developing, testing, and scaling applications in container environments. Available now at Docker Store.
  • Container Connector provides the easy deployment of app services in containerized environments, and simple integration of capabilities into management/orchestration systems including Kubernetes and Mesos/Marathon. Available now at GitHub and Docker Hub.
  • Application Connector delivers application services insertion from the edge of the public cloud by automatically discovering cloud-hosted workloads in AWS, and securely connecting any cloud provider to the customer’s interconnection or data center. Available now through F5 sales.

“Business executives are beginning to rely heavily on cloud solutions in support of their digital transformation efforts, but in many cases, single cloud deployments are insufficient to enable true business agility,” said Zeus Kerravala, Principal Analyst at ZK Research. “Unfortunately, multi-cloud frameworks are complex and IT must take the steps needed to mitigate the challenges of operating in these mixed worlds. With F5’s multi-cloud portfolio of products, IT can deliver consistent and secure application services in any environment needed for business velocity.”

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Appdate: No wallet? No problem?

In his app roundup, SEAN BACHER highlights VodaPay Masterpass, Charge Running, South African App Integrator Directory, uKheshe Health and LocTransie.

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VodaPay Masterpass

Digital mobility is now a way of life and most are using smartphones to pay bills. 

To meet this need Vodacom and Mastercard have launched VodaPay Masterpass, which enables Vodacom customers to load any bank card into a secure digital wallet, downloaded as an app on their smartphone. Once loaded, these cards and the secure credentials associated with them are safely stored, enabling customers to start transacting immediately without the hassle of entering card details each time they make a purchase.

Vodacom customers can buy prepaid data, airtime and SMS, or voice bundles, directly through the app. They can also select the Pay Bills menu option to settle their DStv accounts, pay a utility bill or take care of a traffic fine.

With the app’s Scan to Pay functionality, users can scan a QR code to pay for goods and services wherever Masterpass is accepted, including all SnapScan and Zapper merchants. Once a QR code is scanned, users select the card they wish to use, and enter their bank PIN number on their own device to complete the transaction.

Platform: Android and iOS

Expect to pay: A free download and users will not be charged for any transaction fees.

Stockists:  Download VodaPay Masterpass for iOS here and for Android here.

Charge Running

Most running apps track data like pace and distance and, in some cases play audio designed to motivate you, but don’t give you the push you get when you run with a friend. Charge Running is an app that lets you run alongside other runners, virtually, as well as giving live coaching to help you go the distance.

The app includes features such as:

·       Unlimited access to live running classes and virtual races  

·       The ability to compete with runners anywhere in the world in real-time

·       A live leaderboard that shows where you are in the pack to keep you pushing

·       Live, personalised feedback from professional trainers 

·       Group chats with coaches and fellow runners throughout the run

·       On-demand runs for times when you can’t join the live groups 

·       A choice of difficulty levels and race types 

Platform: Android and iOS

Expect to pay: A free seven-day trial; thereafter R150 per month

Stockists: Visit the Charge Running site here for downloading instructions.

South African App Integrator Directory

The South African App Integrator Directory from Xero is designed to solve the complexity of choosing apps for small business owners.

The directory is now available in South Africa with six partners, including Realm Digital, Radical Cloud Solutions, Nimacc, Insights, Iridium Business Solutions and Creative CFO. According to Xero, these are all organisations with a proven track record of successfully integrating marketplace apps into Xero businesses. There are also currently over 700 apps in Xero’s App Marketplace worldwide, 21 of which are South African born.

As small businesses become more tech-savvy, they need to know exactly which apps to install on their devices and how the apps will help them. They also need to be able to install these apps from a trusted integrator so they know for what they are paying. 

Platform: Any device with an up-to-date Internet browser.

Expect to pay: A one month trial version is offered, after which the App Integrator ranges from R125 to R245 per month, depending on the company’s needs.

Stockists: Visit Xero here for downloading instructions.

Click here to read about uKheshe Health and LocTransie.

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Prize offered for drone films

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DJI and SkyPixel, the world’s most popular aerial photography community, have announced the first short film contest inviting users to submit cinematic stories shot with camera and gimbal products. The 2019 SkyPixel Short Film Contest will accept entries until 14 October 2019. It welcomes submissions from all creators, ranging from hobbyists to social media users and professional videographers. around the globe.

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The 2019 SkyPixel Short Film Contest consists of three storytelling categories—‘Big Moments Start Small,’ ‘Make Your Move’ and ‘Adventure Starts With You.’ There is no restriction on the type or brand of equipment participants use, and they can submit as many videos as they wish.

A total of 100 winners can win a range of prizes totaling $48,600 USD in categories including Recommended Films, Best Editing, Best Story, Nominated Entries, People’s Choice Prize as well as This Week’s Most Popular, sponsored by the partner SanDisk and WD brand from Western Digital Corp. This year’s Best Short Video winners will each receive the new Ronin-SC Pro Combo, Osmo Action as well as WD 2TB My Passport Wireless SSD.

Winning entries will also be showcased on the SkyPixel website as well as to DJI’s millions of fans and followers across its social media platforms.

“DJI has redefined how people capture stable video for all of life’s moments. The compact size, portability and powerful imaging system of our Osmo and Ronin series have also made it possible for anyone to take their creativity and inspirations to the next level,” said Basile David, Director of Brand and Content Partnerships at DJI. “With this contest, we hope to encourage more people to embrace and share their own creative way of storytelling.”

Since 2014, the SkyPixel online community has attracted 16 million professional aerial photographers and content creators from more than 140 countries, growing into the largest aerial photography community today. Over the past five years, SkyPixel has received over 150,000 submissions, becoming a go-to platform for original aerial masterpieces and extraordinary footage powered by other gimbal products focusing on various themes.

Details of the 2019 SkyPixel Short Film Contest

The short film contest consists of three categories:

Big Moments Start Small: Create a video showcasing the small, lightweight design of your camera device and your best cinematic scenes. Users are recommended to include at least 10 seconds of behind-the-scenes clips of their product such as DJI Osmo Pocket or other devices.

Make Your Move: Create a video showcasing the stabilized footage from your device. Users are recommended to include at least 10 seconds of behind-the-scenes clips of their product such as DJI Osmo Series or other devices.

Adventure Starts With You: Create a short, cinematic narrative film to showcase your creative skills and visual effects. Users are recommended to include at least 10 seconds of behind-the-scenes clips of their product such as DJI Ronin Series or other devices.

*Video submissions should not be longer than three minutes in length.

Submission Details

Submission Start Date: August 15, 2019, 2:00 AM (EST)

Submission End Date: October 14, 2019, 2:00 AM (EST)

Award Announcement: October 31, 2019

Interested participants can visit the 2019 SkyPixel Short Film Contest website for more information on contest rules and guidelines. For more information, contact: Skypixel.campaign@dji.com

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