Hybrid IT future beckons
Fujitsu seeks to power customers’ digital transformation
Both private and public clouds portend measurable benefits for organisations. Hence the popularity of the hybrid cloud as a middle safer ground for organisations who want to reap the benefits of both.
However, the Middle East Region seems to have taken a ‘wait and see’ approach so far with regards to Hybrid IT. This is however expected to change. According to Gartner, public cloud services in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region are projected to grow 18.1 percent in 2016 to total $864.2 million, up from an estimated $731.6 million in 2015.
Digital transformation trends underway in the region is largely behind the shift.
Farid Al-Sabbagh, VP & managing director, Fujitsu Middle East says customers in the region are taking an increasing interest in transforming their businesses to meet today’s digital demands.
Fujitsu is there to help these organisations, Al Sabbagh says. “With our approach towards Hybrid IT, we are enabling our customers leverage investments from their existing infrastructure and marry them with the cloud, all without slowing down their business’ digital transformation journey, which will save them money and help accelerate their products to market. Our hybrid approach means utilising all existing systems of record (Robust IT) and unlocking their value by making them accessible to new systems of engagement (Fast IT).”
Fujitsu recently announced the ongoing global rollout of its next-generation IaaS and PaaS cloud service, Fujitsu Cloud Service K5. The K5 cloud computing platform is designed to enable digital transformation through the integration of traditional IT environments into new cloud-based technologies. K5 accelerates application development and brings together enterprise-grade reliability, performance and scalability with the cost efficiency of open source-based cloud technology, Fujitsu said during the announcement.
The K5 cloud service, can be delivered as a private cloud running either in on premise data centres or hosted by Fujitsu, as well as public cloud with support for virtual private cloud, Al-Sabbagh explains.
Those organisations who have taken the plunge are seeing the real benefits of using Hybrid IT, says Al Sabbagh. During the K5 launches, Fujitsu highlighted examples from around the world of real-world customer applications, and benefits. These include Nanto Bank of Japan, using K5 to improve access to banking and financial services for its customers as well as providing integrated management of multi-vendor smartphone applications; Optex Co. Ltd in Japan that supports its customers with sensors in various fields. It is using K5 to underpin the broad use of sensors to meAzure water quality, processing the massive amount of sensor date in real-time
Fujitsu itself has migrated 13,000 servers, 640 core systems and is planning to save over USD $300m by moving to an OpenStack-based cloud platform.
One of Fujitsu’s key partnerships in the cloud is with Microsoft Azure.
Fujitsu deployed Azure in its own data centres for its Platform as a Service (PaaS) A5 cloud offering in Japan, allowing for public and on-premise cloud services, worldwide. The company has also developed and acquired a series of automated migration tools, such as UForge, as part of its UShareSoft acquisition. This is combined with a global service presence and Global Delivery Centres (GDC), providing a one stop solution for customers who wish to migrate into Azure with Fujitsu, including ongoing service management solutions, Al-Sabbagh says.
“Currently, we are in the process of deploying (what we believe to be) the world’s largest workload migration to Azure for a global manufacturing company. This process leverages Fujitsu's migration tools and services and includes ongoing service management for Azure – a prime example of how this partnerships works,” Al-Sabbagh adds.
Other examples of where Fujitsu provides Azure services which are orchestrated alongside other cloud and traditional IT solutions. The Fujitsu Cloud Service Management (FCSM) solution can provide a 'single pane of glass' view of Azure as part of Hybrid IT solutions. This provides a single way of managing security, visibility and cost management for customers, including the identification and control of 'shadow IT'.
Indeed, a key selling point for the hybrid IT model is providing a single management interface to all different types of data – whether they are in any cloud model or on-premise, Al-Sabbagh explains. “The solution also has to ensure that that these all work together to deliver the ideal mix of services to the organisation. The customer is then able to port or migrate any of these services with minimal effort, depending on security and cost benefits, and can do so on a safe and secure platform,” he concludes.