Microsoft advises: 2 cloud projects with easily justified ROI
Joelle Woo, Director, Marketing and Operations, Microsoft Hong Kong
recognizes that the cloud is the future and we are 'all in' on the cloud. Today, nearly 100% of our engineers are doing work that contributes to our major cloud solutions," said Joelle Woo (pictured), director, marketing and operations, Microsoft Hong Kong. Two of Microsoft's "major cloud solutions" are Office365
and Windows Azure
"Today, nearly 100% of our engineers are doing work that contributes to our major cloud solutions."
-- Joelle Woo, director, marketing and operations, Microsoft HK
At global level, said Woo, Microsoft is investing US$9 billion in research and development (R&D) on an annual basis, and has already invested US$3 billion in cloud technology and US$500 million for each of Microsoft’s data center.
In an interview with Asia Cloud Forum
, Woo briefs us on one Microsoft’s cloud service deployment for Hong Kong’s biggest broadcaster TVB
, how to present a strong business case for cloud service deployment, and four key lessons learnt about cloud computing in 2011.
Asia Cloud Forum: Describe one of your company’s most successful customer deployments of cloud service in Hong Kong in 2011.
: TVB fun
[a smartphone app that enables TV audience interaction] leverages on cloud infrastructure to handle spike workload
during live TV programs, which can then be shut down afterwards to cut down on operation cost.
The scalability and the pay-per-usage charging model of Windows Azure
make two-way interaction with millions of TV viewers become possible at affordable cost. This offers TVB a new operation and business model to increase viewers' loyalty
and generate additional revenues for the company. The cloud deployment also benefits TVB from the ease of development and faster time-to-market.
How will you help IT/CIOs establish their business case for cloud computing/services deployment to their senior management?
For companies that wish to achieve early and significant benefits of cloud deployments, we advise that CIOs and IT pros can target cloud adoption at the following types of projects:
- New project and new application -- existing application that has too much legacy for testing/UAT (user acceptance testing) signoff to justify the new platform adoption cost.
- Application with bursting requirement -- return on investment can be easily justified if the pike load is very different from normal load since most hardware would sit idle most of the time.
What were your most important lessons learnt about cloud computing in 2011?
Woo: Cloud computing is not a fad. It is here to stay and companies are getting real value from cloud services today.
"In university research, large HPC server farm is a huge drain of grant money while those machines are not 100% utilize during the research cycle."
-- Joelle Woo, Microsoft HK
Cloud development is a much better fit for certain industry/usage scenarios than others.
- Media and entertainment: Huge growth (while unpredictable) for online content consumption due to the mobile device popularity (phone and slate).
- High performance computing: Especially in university research , large HPC (high performance computing) server farm is a huge drain of grant money while those machines are not 100% utilize during the research cycle. Pay-as-you-go cloud model makes a lot more sense to them.
- Education: Interactive learning popularity will continue to drive up more demand on online learning materials. New projects in this area are perfect candidates for cloud adoption.
Hybrid models of cloud computing
will allow customers the flexibility to move to the cloud at their own pace. Customers should plan which applications and services they want to move to the cloud based on their needs. Gartner
Group’s Matt Cain predicts that 55% of businesses will be using cloud-based email
Customers demand high levels of security and privacy
and want to be sure their data is held securely and privately.
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