April 2, 2014 | Written by: Vinod K. Singh
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In January 2014, IBM announced an investment of $1.2 billion in expanding their global cloud footprint. This journey begins with the opening of a new SoftLayer data center in Hong Kong (the first one for the year).
Hong Kong is a strategic market for IBM with a strong customer base. IBM is focusing on catering to the local businesses in moving their workloads to cloud. The data residency requirement for Hong Kong customers will help them to move their critical regulated workloads to cloud and the latest data privacy laws there will make customers compliant and comfortable.
SoftLayer brings cost advantage to Hong Kong customers since they can subscribe to its services at local market rates instead of global rates. This cost advantage will eventually be extended to the entire Asia Pacific region as well.
Hong Kong will be connected through multiple network providers, including NTT, Equinix and Tata. SoftLayer built its own network (though at three times the cost of other hosting providers) and globally has 19 PoPs (Point of Presence) connected through an MPLS network. Hong Kong adds to an existing Asia Pacific footprint which includes the Singapore data center and Points of Presence (PoPs) in Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo.
The Hong Kong data center will be similar to other SoftLayer data centers with bare metal, virtual machines (VMs) and private hosted cloud available to customers. Customers can use industry standard hypervisors (Microsoft Hyper-V, VMware ESXi) on their bare metal deployment. This is one of the unique aspects of SoftLayer.
IBM is also white labeling the offerings through second-tier Hong Kong telcos. SoftLayer supports more than 2,000 application programming interfaces (APIs), using almost all the functions of the SoftLayer portal that can be executed, like ordering, provisioning/ deprovisioning or configuring a load balancer or a firewall. It allows so many integration points for third party or vendors to use and hence white-labeling becomes much easier and more competitive.
IBM is supporting Hong Kong in being a business and technology hub. It is helping Hong Kong clients strategize on how to leverage on the cloud, build and run applications instantly and drive savings and revenue. With the new Hong Kong facility based on SoftLayer cloud architecture, IBM sees it as a key plank in its ambitions to address GCG customers’ demands for more secure, reliable and speedy cloud environments. The Hong Kong customers like Gameone.com, Distil Networks, Tiket.com, Simpli.fi, 6waves, Beijing Elex and Epro are taking lead to adopt Softlayer.
IBM has more than 35 years of data center management experience. It has managed more than 430 client and IBM data centers across the global and IBM has exceptionally talented global support team which handles 13B events for over 4,000 clients per day. It has an exceptionally talented global support team that follows the sun. This is one of the significant reasons for customers to come to the IBM cloud.
The focus is born on the web business (gaming, digital marketing, mobile apps and more) and dynamic enterprise workloads (Dev/Test, big data, SAP, Oracle Apps, hosted enterprise private cloud and more). By the end of 2014, IBM will operate 40 data centers across five continents, and will double SoftLayer cloud capacity.
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